For more than a decade, Derek Jeter has organized a star-studded golf tournament to benefit his foundation, Turn 2, which promotes healthy lifestyles in young people.
After several years in Tampa, and then a few more in Las Vegas, Jeter’s sister and Turn 2 president Sharlee Jeter decided to up the ante and take his talents (or, more accurately, according to Derek, lack of her) international. This year’s tournament, officially known as the Derek Jeter Celebrity Invitational, was held for the first time at the five-year-old, 1,000-acre Baha Mar resort on the island of New Providence.
“We thought it would be nice to have [the tournament] in a destination where you could bring your family, and it’s also a vacation,” he tells InsideHook. “Derek used to vacation in the Bahamas, often in Albany. He came here on vacation, it was like, ‘this is a perfect place to do it’”.
“I love it [here]Derek adds. “I really do.”
Fast-forward to tournament weekend, and a handful of his former teammates (Jorge Posada, Tino Martinez, and CC Sabathia), former NSYNC members (Joey Fatone and Chris Kirkpatrick), as well as Anthony Anderson and Tyler Cameron, among others, they are for an inaugural test at the Jack Nicklaus Signature Royal Blue golf course in Baha Mar.
“You always hear athletes and entertainers talk about how good they are at golf, and then you see how bad they are,” laughs Derek. But talent level aside, the event has already raised over a million dollars for Turn 2.
Baha Mar, while a relatively new property, is no stranger to high-profile events like the DJCI. Since its inception in April 2017, it has actually been a hotbed for these types of events. On tournament weekend alone, Baha Mar simultaneously hosts a crypto conference, attendees including Katy Perry, Steve Aoki, Liam Payne, and Bill Clinton, as well as TikTok star Charli D’Amelio’s 18th birthday party.
According to Baha Mar’s director of marketing, Bryan Guillot, events like the DJCI create an energy that reverberates through operations. The good news is that you don’t have to be a DJCI guest to feel it. After spending a few days at Baha Mar to take stock of its offerings, we can confirm that the energy is palpable and is felt at virtually every level of the guest experience…regardless of what’s happening on property.
New Providence Island in the Bahamas is less than a three-hour flight from New York City and only half an hour from Miami. From Lynden Pindling International Airport, the resort is just a ten minute drive away. This level of accessibility alone could explain its sharp rise in popularity.
But Baha Mar is much more than its proximity to its largest US market. In fact, it is home to three major (and diverse) hotel brands: Grand Hyatt, SLS Hotels and Rosewood Hotels & Resorts, with a total of 2,330 rooms (1,800 at Grand Hyatt, 300 at SLS, and 230 at Rosewood), 30 luxury establishments, 12 pools, a new $200 million water park, a 30,000 square foot ESPA and the largest casino in the entire Caribbean. In addition to its half-mile of private beach, Baha Mar also boasts its own private island, Long Cay, among its amenities (although it’s not currently in use). In total, the complex employs more than 5,000 associates.
It’s a behemoth of a property, and you could easily spend an entire week at the Baha Mar and not visit the same restaurant, or even the pool, twice. Adult offerings are plentiful, but there’s no shortage of family-friendly activities either, an important factor for Jeters when choosing a property. If Atlantis, the only other property in Nassau of similar scale, is for children, Baha Mar is for parents with kids. Even Baha Bay, the new water park set on 15 acres of beach, is more luxurious than youthful, with the full-service, reservation-only Baha Bay Beach Club located just off the park’s shoreline.
Thanks to the 45 bar and restaurant concepts on the property, from beachside food trucks to great outdoor dining options, there’s something for everyone when it comes to food, too. Baha Mar prides itself on being a one-of-a-kind dining destination in the Caribbean. It has caught the attention of several celebrity chefs, including James Beard Award-winning Chef Marcus Samuelsson, Michelin-starred Chef Daniel Boulud Café Boulud, and Master Sushi Chef Katsuya Uechi, who now runs Marcus at Baha Mar Fish + Chop House, Rosewood Baha Mar. and Katsuya, respectively. There are ample opportunities for fresh seafood, of course, but also for things like Italian craftsmanship, world-class butchery, and authentic Chinese food.
Additionally, Baha Mar has implemented some of the most generous COVID policies we have seen thus far. New in the last year, they introduced the “Travel with Confidence” program, which promises to extend a free stay to any guest who tests positive for COVID prior to departure from the resort. either complimentary private jet service back to the U.S. If the guest chooses the former, Baha Mar “will ease their quarantine with complimentary accommodations and a daily in-room dining credit of $150 per person per day, for up to 14 days or until the guest receives a negative result for COVID-19.” Testing facilities are open 24/7 and at all three hotels.
I can think of much worse places to be stuck in quarantine.
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