The Bal du Paradis was one of the world’s most famous galas in 1962, a fete on Paradise Island in The Bahamas celebrating the opening of the Ocean Club resort.
Boldfaced names like Zsa Zsa Gabor and five United States senators were on hand for the celebration, the first of generations of celebrities and luxury travelers who would be drawn to the iconic resort in The Bahamas.
That included everyone from the Beatles to James Bond (more on that later).
Today, the resort remains one of the most iconic places to stay in the Caribbean: the Ocean Club, a Four Seasons Resort, a jet-set-era classic beloved for its plum perch on Cabbage Beach, its stunning Versailles gardens and its position as one of the hemisphere’s beacons of luxury hospitality.
And now the legendary resort has a new look, following a renovation project completed in time for its 60th anniversary.
The centerpiece of the renovation was a full-scale makeover of its Crescent Wing, along with a new look for the poolside eatery, Ocean Blu.
The renovations to the guest rooms and suites in the Crescent Wing were “inspired by the natural scenery of the island itself,” according to Four Seasons.
That included what the company calls a “Bahamian chic concept,” with gold bamboo-framed mirrors, deep-soaking tubs surrounded by wall mosaics and new sand-inspired tile floors.
The wing’s suites include separate living rooms and bedrooms, with a powder room, a full bathroom and furniture styled after undulating waves.
It’s just another addition to the resort’s vast amenities, from its three pools (one an infinity-edge pool on the ocean, another the Versailes-garden-set pool just for adults; and a family lagoon pool),, its world-famous Dune restaurant by Jean-Georges and the championship Tom Weiszkopf-designed Ocean Club Golf Course, among others.
While the resort has always been a favorite of luxury travelers the world over, in 2006 it received another boost as a major setting for scenes in Daniel Craig’s first foray as James Bond in “Casino Royale.” (You can still enjoy Bond-inspired drinks at the hotel’s wonderful lobby bar).
To celebrate its history, the property has collaborated with Assouline on the new book, The Ocean Club, a pictorial chronicle of six decades of hospitality history, dating back to its founding by supermarket heir Huntington Hartford back in 1962.
“The pages of this book inspire and delight, while sharing the history of our beloved resort,” said Viktoria Riley, the resort’s director of marketing.
The Ocean Club is one of three Four Seasons-branded resorts in the Caribbean, along with properties in Nevis and Anguilla.
For more, visit The Ocean Club, a Four Seasons Resort.