By Alexander Britell
A sleek new hotel is set to inject new energy into the Bimini archipelago of The Bahamas.
It’s called illa Bimini, and the new project by Island Developers is slated to break ground in August.
The beachfront “eco-chic” residential hotel, which will be designed by renowned architect Chad Oppenheim’s Oppenheim Architecture + Design, will have a mix of 54 three and four-bedroom residential villas and a 49-key boutique hotel.
“Bimini’s natural landscape is incomparable, and its real estate market is a rising ‘hot spot,’” said Rafael Reyes, co-founder and a principal of Island Developers. “Within close proximity to the U.S., illa [sic] will be a hidden gem for owners and guest as it offers a rare combination of exclusivity as a private island and convenient access by boat, sea plane and helicopters.”
Amenities will include a beachfront pool, tennis courts, a bar and lounge, a restaurant, a library, fruit gardens and an overwater spa, among others.
Bimini is the closest corner of The Bahamas to the United States, just 48 nautical miles off the coast of Florida.
Long a favorite of adventurers (Ernest Hemingway sojourned there), it’s home to some of the most pristine waters in the wider region (and some of its best bonefishing, too).
“In terms of development, illa Bimini Resort & Residences is not expanding the development footprint of the already existing environmentally approved plans for the project and will not negatively impact the land in any way,” added Rafael Reyes. “To enhance our sustainability efforts, we have incorporated a complete solar package, energy management system, smart-home-technology and back-up generator applications into our design and services.”
In recent years, Bimini vaulted back onto the map with the launch of Genting’s Resorts World Bimini, a casino hotel project that now includes a Hilton-branded hotel. That’s helped to complement a niche of beloved places to stay led by the legendary Bimini Big Game Club.
More recently, Sir Richard Branson announced that Bimini would be on the circuit for his new Virgin Voyages cruise line, with the new port home to a hip beach club designed in partnership with Resorts World.
The inclusion of Oppenheim, perhaps best known for his work in helping to define Miami’a aesthetic over the last few decades, is a major boost.
“The ultimate goal for illa was to create an eco-luxury development that builds with the land, not on the land,” Oppenheim said. “From the landscape, individual villas, materials to services, we designed a holistic retreat with environmental sustainability and community development at the forefront.”
The project will be set at the far north of North Bimini, west of the Atlantic and east of the longtime Bimini Bay project.
For more, visit illa Bimini.