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British Colonial Hilton Nassau Hotel 4.0

Nassau, New Providence Island, Bahamas

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Review Summary

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Pros

  • Central Downtown location, walking distance to Nassau Bahamas Cruise Terminal
  • Set on beautiful grounds with a private 300-foot beach
  • Modern rooms have flat-screen TVs, mini-fridges, and work desks  
  • Large marble bathrooms are stocked with premium toiletries
  • Heated freshwater pool, and a range of leisure and water activities
  • Several indoor/outdoor restaurants and bars, and room service
  • 24-hour fitness center with modern cardio- and weight-training equipment
  • Excellent business amenities for corporate travelers
  • Free Wi-Fi in common areas
  • Valet parking (for a fee)

Cons

  • Resort fee, mandatory gratuity fee, and fee for in-room Wi-Fi
  • Complaints concerning room cleanliness 
  • Room decor is more generic than colonial

Bottom Line

The 288-room British Colonial Hilton is a historic Downtown landmark offering all of the features (and add-on fees) you’d expect from an upscale establishment. Set on 300 feet of private harborside beach, the hotel neighbors Nassau’s main touristy strip, and it's walking distance to the Nassau Bahamas Cruise Terminal. Highlights include its beachfront setting, freshwater pool, lush, tropical grounds, superb business amenities, 24-hour fitness center, water sports, elegant function rooms, and choice of on-site restaurants and bars. Modern rooms are generic, but well-equipped with flat-screen TVs, work desks, and huge marble bathrooms (with premium toiletries). This Hilton is a good option for cruise passenger stopovers, corporate travelers, and those seeking a central, full-service hotel that's less “resort-y” than others. Travelers seeking a more resort-like vibe could check out Atlantis.

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Scene

Grand, Old World property with contemporary additions and lush (beachfront) garden grounds

The massive lobby exudes Old World style, with colonial-inspired architecture, terrazzo marble floors, and a grand staircase

Opened in 1923 on the Old Fort of Nassau site, this Hilton stands as a majestic (seven-story high) tribute to colonial architecture – echoed ever-so-elegantly inside, by its grand, Old Worldly lobby. A domed glass-tile ceiling soars over terrazzo marble floors, and a grand staircase, flanked by lofty (faux) date palms and dark timber columns. The scene makes for perfect lobby acoustics, and atmosphere, for the grand piano that fills it with sound from time to time. Poised beneath a giant chandelier, the main bar, Bullion, offers more timeless grandeur, but a more contemporary flavor emerges in mid century barrel-backed accent chairs and pops of orange and green. Aqua, the main restaurant, fully embraces the modern vibe, but bright orange dividers, round booths and blue abstract carpet feel more mid-range hotel chain than fine-dining. Outside, beneath tall, slender palm trees, pathways meander through the hotel’s lush gardens and graduate to 300 feet of private harbor beach scattered with deckchairs and thatched sun umbrellas. The curvaceous freshwater pool also serves sunbathers well with an assortment of sunbeds and contemporary cabanas for two. Overlooking the beach and pool, the Patio Bar & Grille takes colonial decor in a coastal direction with its open air, bungalow-style pavilion decked out with wicker chairs. The hotel grounds and harbor view rooms are prime viewing for busy cruise liner traffic sailing to and from the cruise terminal, where moored vessels (as many as 7) resemble a giant cruise ship parking lot.

Location

In Downtown Nassau on a private harbor beach, walking distance to the cruise terminal

Map of British Colonial Hilton Nassau Hotel

Set in Downtown Nassau, between the bustling main road and a private harbor beach, the hotel is a 10- to 12-minute walk to Prince George Wharf and the Nassau Bahamas Cruise Terminal, and a 22-minute drive from Nassau International Airport. A two-minute walk east of the hotel takes guests to the Straw Market, which commences the main Bay Street tourist strip of bars, eateries, boutiques, and souvenir shops housed in Caribbean-bright colonial-style buildings. Walking 13 minutes west, guests will arrive to seaside dining village, Arawak Cay, and the famous “Fish Fry” serving up Bahamian meals and drinks from pastel-colored beachside shacks. American fast-food chains are scattered around the area, with Dunkin' Donuts and McDonalds right across the road. Senor Frogs is located next door, as is the Pompey Museum. Other cultural landmarks within walking distance include the National Art Museum (five minutes), Pirates of Nassau (seven minutes), Government House (eight minutes), and Fort Charlotte (a 22-minute walk or five-minute drive).

Rooms

Modern and bright (albeit generic), with work desks, huge marble bathrooms, and views

The City View King Room features generic, chain-like decor in a neutral brown-and-beige palette

Aside from the marble floors, guest rooms at the British Colonial Hilton head in a modern chain-hotel direction -- a far generic cry from the facade and lobby. Coffee-colored wood furniture; tall, upholstered headboards; and contemporary rugs all conform to a neutral brown-and-beige palette. Apart from the view (depending on aspect), island-inspired artworks are the only reminder that guests are in the Caribbean. Rooms enjoy good natural light, are well-equipped, and offer Wi-Fi (for a fee), but lack of cleanliness is a common guest complaint. Categories range from Double, Queen and King Guest Rooms to King Bedroom Suites and Executive (King) Rooms -- with a choice of City, Garden, or Harbor views. They all feature comfortable beds dressed in crisp white bedding, flat-screen TVs, spacious work desks with ergonomic chairs, mini-fridges, coffee- and tea-making facilities, irons and ironing boards, safes, alarm clocks, and air-conditioning. The huge marble bathrooms are a pleasant surprise, equipped with separate showers and tubs, large mirrors, hairdryers, and a good selection of Peter Thomas Roth toiletries. Some higher room categories include Executive Lounge access, free breakfast, pullout sofas, and spa baths. Guests who feel the cold may want to request a blanket, as bedding is light and fiercely air-conditioned hotel interiors can become chilly.

Features

Private beach, pool, fitness center, great business amenities, and several restaurants and bars

The hotel's private beach (the only private beach in Nassau) provides water sports like kayaking and views of the nearby cruise terminal

The Hilton is packed with features and services, with some standouts that begin with exclusive use of Nassau’s only private beach. A choice of on-site dining options includes Aqua, Bullion, and Patio Bar & Grille. Aqua restaurant serves modern American meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Bullion offers a full bar, specialty cocktails and a range of bar snacks. Patio Bar & Grille services the pool area and beach with light snacks, more American favorites and a full service bar. Sweet Breeze Coffee House and Desserts is convenient for a coffee, cake, or quick to-go snacks. Families with children are well catered to with a babysitting service, children’s activities, and a kids’ dining menu.

In addition to the business center, corporate and business travelers have access to meeting rooms, audio/visual equipment rentals, free printing, a secretarial service, notary public, office rental and video conferencing. Wi-Fi is available throughout -- free in common areas, but for a fee in-room. Elegant chandeliered function rooms offer flexible conference and event possibilities, and gym enthusiasts will appreciate the 24-hour fitness center that’s decked out with plenty of modern cardio- and weight-training equipment. The adjoining exercise room -- perfect for yoga and stretching -- is equipped with mats and fitness balls. Other on-site leisure and water activities include sailing, snorkeling, kayaking, basketball, and beach volleyball. The swimming pool is freshwater and heated. Souvenirs and basic necessities can be purchased in the lobby gift shop, and the Alex Fraga boutique sells high end women’s jewelry. Other services on offer include baggage storage, an activities desk, laundry, valet parking (for a fee), local currency exchange, and room service.

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Things You Should Know About British Colonial Hilton Nassau Hotel

Address

One Bay Street, Nassau, Caribbean

Phone

(242) 322-3301

Also Known As

  • British Colonial Hilton
  • British Colonial Hilton Nassau
  • Hilton Hotel Nassau
  • Hilton Nassau
  • Nassau Hilton

Room Types

  • City View Standard Room
  • City View Suite
  • Executive Harbour View Room
  • Executive Room
  • Harbour View Room
  • Harbour View Suite
  • Ocean View Suite
  • Standard Room

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