Photos and Review by Oyster.com Investigators
This low-key vibe attracts families and savvy travelers
This is not the place for travelers who want a typical hotel setting with all the bells and whistles. Sunrise Beach Club, rather, appeals to simple travelers who want the comforts of home -- kitchen, laundry facilities and free parking -- and the privilege of being on a spectacular beach. Some choose to stay here simply because they want easy access to the Atlantis without actually having to stay on the property along with the crowds and high prices.
The vibe is homey and peaceful with slightly aging units surrounded by pretty gardens, walkways, and fountains that lead to a front desk area (manned from morning to early evening). Next to here, and impossible to miss, is Viola's, the bar and grill that stays open for three meals and late into the evening on certain nights for karaoke and live music. The restaurant attracts a steady stream of friendly locals throughout the day who stop in for a beer or meal and chat with the staff, giving it an authentic vibe that is hard to find at the neighboring resorts.
Two pools at the property never see a crowd. There's one in front next to Viola's and one in the back, closer to the beach. Running next to the property is a private path and numerical lock that opens a gate allowing access to the spectacular Cabbage Beach. Weather-permitting, a stand called Archie's sells beverages and snacks at the foot of the staircase. Vendors who tend to migrate to the Riu next door may approach guests with the option of jet ski rentals, but for more relaxation, guests are free to walk towards the Ocean Club and will not have any trouble finding a whole area of quiet, uncrowded beach. At night, guest can grill on their patios, dress up for one of the many restaurants in the area, or just stick to Viola's.
A hidden gem next to the Atlantis -- 30 minutes from the airport
Visitors arriving to Nassau International Airport (the largest airport in the Bahamas) will head to Paradise Island via rental car or taxi, and the trip takes about a half hour, depending on traffic. If renting a car, parking is free at the property and there's a security guard on-site. Guests can stock their kitchens from a few grocery store options in the area, including Solomon's Fresh Market at Harbour Bay Shopping Centre (in Nassau). Guests who choose not to rent a car can easily walk to the sprawling Atlantis Resort and Marina Village for endless shops and restaurants, and, of course, the casino. Day passes to the water park are also available. In the other direction is One&Only Ocean Club where guests can splurge at Dune for a drink at sunset. During the day, this direction provides a prime beach walk far from crowds, ending at the rock ledge (a great place for snorkeling) and the Ocean Club Golf Course for outstanding views.
Units vary in size and decor, but all have kitchens and patios
The property has several privately-owned units here, and 26 of these are offered for rentals and range in size from one-bedrooms all the way up to the massive five-bedroom unit, which feels like a house. While decor and amenities vary depending on the owner's taste, all units have fully-equipped kitchens with microwaves, toasters and coffeemakers, pull-out sofas and furnished patios. The most common unit -- a one-bedroom -- tends to take up two floors. There's living area, sofa bed and kitchen next to a half bath, and a tight spiral staircase leading up to the bedroom and full bathroom with tub/shower combo. There's a big closet area upstairs and a safe for no extra fee. Some maintenance issues like problems with the air conditioners may occur. Some units, like the property, show some wear and tear.
The larger units tend to take up the best spots overlooking the beach; for instance, a three-bedroom and five-bedroom villa have sea views and massive terraces for grilling and dinner parties. Guests can pre-order groceries from FoodStore2Go so they'll be delivered to the villa before arrival, or guests can head to Nassau for Solomon's Fresh Market in Harbour Bay Shopping Centre.
A world-famous beach and affordable food and drink prices
The spectacular Cabbage Beach is the highlight of the property and is accessed via a private gate (guests will receive a key code upon check-in). At the bottom of the staircase before hitting the sand is a stand called Archie's selling canned soda, beer, and water along with hot dogs and snacks. Cocktails -- like margaritas, pina coladas, daiquiris, and the Miami Vice (pineapple and strawberry mixed) -- can be ordered here as well. It's cash-only and prices are reasonable. For those who want to rent jet skis, there are plenty of vendors by Riu next door. The beach is entirely public, so guests can walk in either direction to check out the Atlantis or the quieter Ocean Club.
Viola’s Bar and Grill -- the property's only restaurant -- is located next to the front desk. It has the usual mix of bar food, burgers, sandwiches, salads, pizzas, and hot wings, and people can dine on tables out in the sun or under shade. Every Wednesday and Friday it put on a karaoke night, while Saturday nights bring in a band that plays until the wee hours, which can disturb guests in the units close by. The bar attracts locals, and it gives guests at the villas a taste of the local culture without having to leave the premise.
The front desk is usually manned by one staff member from the morning until early evening (they can assist with excursions and transportation) and there’s a small shop in the back selling essentials like gallons of water, flip flops, bathing suits, hats, SPF lotion, dishwasher soap, toothpaste, and basic dry storage food items like coffee and cereal.
Wi-Fi is offered for a daily fee, as is internet using the main (and slow) computer terminal in the lobby for a slightly lesser price. Laundry facilities are on-site, though hours may be limited while the housekeeping staff are working. There is no fitness center.
Smack dab between Atlantis Resort, Riu, and the One&Only Ocean Club on Paradise Island, this hidden gem offers 26 units ranging in size from one-, two-, three-, four and even five-bedroom options. Decor varies depending on the owner's taste, but these spacious villas all have fully-equipped kitchens, coffeemakers, sofa beds, and patios at generally great prices. Guests can walk to the aforementioned neighboring resorts for restaurants and nightlife, or rent a car for more island freedom. Lounge chairs are never a problem at one of two pools, but do not miss out on having private access to Cabbage Beach; since the entire stretch of sand is completely public, guests can grab a beer from Archie's stand and choose the party vibe in front or walk further down for near isolation. Sunrise's on-site restaurant serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and offers occasional live entertainment (that can stay loud late).