It may have taken longer than originally planned, but Royal Caribbean is moving forward with opening the exclusive area in 2025.
The Royal Beach Club at Paradise Island will be the first Royal Beach Club, and it promises to be a compelling new option for cruise ship guests visiting Nassau, Bahamas.
Royal Caribbean had originally announced the beach club project in March 2020, but the cruise industry shutdown shortly thereafter left the venture in limbo.
Royal Caribbean received approval by the government of The Bahamas to move forward with the 17-acre project.
The new opening date is 2025, and Royal Caribbean promises more details, "will be revealed in the coming months."
Royal Caribbean International President and CEO Michael Bayley celebrated the news, "The Bahamas has been a phenomenal partner since the very start, when they became our first port of call more than 50 years ago."
"As we continue to bring millions of visitors to experience attractions throughout Nassau each year, The Royal Beach Club at Paradise Island is the next bold adventure in Royal Caribbean’s commitment to both increasing tourism in The Bahamas and delivering memorable vacations to our guests."
What is the Royal Beach Club?
Not quite a private island, the Royal Beach Club is a new type of cruise ship experience that offers a curated beach day.
It won't be as secluded as Perfect Day at CocoCay, but it wont be something passengers on other cruise lines can enjoy either.
Royal Beach Club at Paradise Island will be located at the western end of Paradise Island. Cruisers will recognize this area as the same plot of land that the famous lighthouse near the Port of Nassau is located.
In today's announcement, Royal Caribbean describes the beach club as follows, "Alongside private cabanas, stunning pools and more, the vibrant Bahamian spirit and culture will come to life throughout the world-class destination experience."
"Vacationers will be welcomed by local architecture that complements the exceptional views of The Bahamas’ turquoise-blue waters and white sand beaches, along with experiences that feature Bahamian fare, island-style barbecues, live music and local artisans."
Partnership with The Bahamas
Royal Caribbean is designing this beach club as a public-private partnership in which Bahamians can own up to 49% equity in the beach club.
The beach club will be made up of 13 acres of land owned by the cruise line and 4 acres of Crown Land.
The Crown Land will be contributed as equity in the new venture to ensure a share of the profits return to the government and the people in a first-of-its-kind agreement in The Bahamas.
Local businesses and entrepreneurs will also have the opportunity to manage the vast majority of the experience.
The cruise line expects the beach club will generate hundreds of jobs between the construction and long-term operation.
This, in addition to a new tourism levy, will go into reinvesting in the local community. The collaboration between the government, the community and Royal Caribbean will continue as the development moves through the stages of planning and completion.
What the Royal Beach Club could look like
Based on Royal Caribbean's Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) that it submitted, we have a possible idea of the plans are for this beach. Keep in mind the images and concepts shared here could have changed, but it's our best guess until more info is shared later.
Royal Caribbean wants to create a "world class beach experience" that has a family zone, arrivals area, water sports center, food and even a swimming pool.
The EIA mentions an entrance fee, so this will likely be an extra cost experience for cruise ship guests.
"It is anticipated that with the payment of an entrance fee, the experience will include access to the Royal Beach Club, lunch and the rental of a beach chair. For an additional fee, guests will be able to purchase alcohol and sodas, a cabana, day-bed, clamshell, and participate in watersports and local tours."
Activities offered would include (but not limited to):
- Scuba diving
- Jet skiing
- Floating mat rentals
- Inflatable water slides
- Nature hikes
- Other sand and water related activities
The Conceptual Master Plan has a very low resolution image, but we can make out these features:
- Tranquility Beach
- Hideaway Beach
- Sapphire Beach
- VIP Cabanas
- Beach Bars
- Signature Bahamian Bar
- Artisan Village
- Tidal Wading Pool
- Adults Pool
- Food hall
- Tram service
- Snack Shack
- Kids' Splash Pool and Wading Pool
With cruise ship visits to Nassau that could last up to 9 hours, the Royal Beach Club experience will include four to five hours on Paradise Island plus additional time for shopping and other Nassau attractions.