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Small Bay Hope Lodge, Andros, Bahamas

In the beginning there was hope. Dick's Birch's hope for a single place,  healthy place and lots of friendly people. Then there was Small Hope Bay Lodge the place that grew out of hope and was built on the Bay that hid treasure and became the place that Dick built. He built 20 cottages himself using coral rock and Andros Pine. Each cottage has neccessary amenities - comfortable bed, shower/toilet facilities, hot and cold running water, lots of towels and decorated in island batik colors. Rach is cooled by natural breezes and overhead ceiling fans and each is situated right on thebeach, shaded by pines and hugged by the ocean. All are designed with relaxation in mind-no phones, no TVs, no distractions. Small Hope has a central Lodge with a large living room rather than a hotel  lobby. Checking in means having a cool drink and your name hung on a Panacea , the old fishing boat that serves as a bar.

There is a huge fireplace for cool winter nights, and lots of throw  pillows just for lazing. There are tons of books, everything from science
fiction to the Harvard classics. There's room for socializing and places where the art of good conversation is cultivated. There is a dining room that greets you with three bountiful meals every day - Bahamian specialties such as fresh conch and lobster and hot Johnny bread every night. Lunch is a buffet and dinner includes a lavish salad bar and a choice of seafood and meatevery night. If you want both, just order half 'n' half.

Children are welcome and they love watersports, informality and  spaciousness. The Lodge has special games room and a separate dinner for under 12 crowd. During the evening, the lounge belongs to grown-ups and parents relax while children enjoy their own night time dining and play.  Meeting people here is easy and doing what you want even easier.  If you want a drink, help yourself, if you want to rest, there is a lot's of places to do it. Be a part of Small Hope Lodge family - meet their kids, pet  their dogs and share their lives.

Diving is a specialty at Small Hope. The magnificent 142 miles Andros Barrier Reef is one mile offshore, about a 10 minutes boat ride, and the marine life is fantastic! If you are new to diving, there is free 2 hour instruction. Then there is the ultimate "Over The Wall" dive to 185 feet, looking down a sheer vertical drop 6,000 feet into the Tongue of the Ocean. Anything then 100-foot visibility is considered to be poor here and the temperatures of these sparkling clear water range from a low of 74 to high of 84 degrees. These dive sites  feature spectacular ocen blue holes, wrecks, caverns, and tunnels festooned with corals and sponges, ledges where turtles rest and rays drift by. There  is a tremendous variety of fish and corals in their natural abundance.   

For non-divers, there are great places for snorkeling and lots of  equipment. There is also a windsurfer and a small sailboat. The owners will pack you a lunch and you can sail off to a secluded cay. A small fleet of bicycles makes easy to explore the area. Stop at any endless beaches that line the island, they are yours to explore. Drop into a hammock - it's a respectable  pastime around there!

If you are curious about the natural world around you, there are  plenty of books around and local "experts" often stop by, who are happy to  share what they know about sea, birds, exotic wildflowers and native plants.     Too much activity? Well, then, why don't just work on your tan or in the solarium (where you can sunbathe au naturel in complete privacy). Sleep in the hammock under the sun, visit the 'island's style' fitness   center or just stretch out in achase lounge. Or go fishing and bring home   some dinner. The fishing guides are excellent and everybody will be happy to help you eat your catch.

And when the day is gone, soothe yourself with  a hot tub on the beach under the stars. These are the treasures of Small   Hope. Come discover them...And, maybe you will rediscover yourself.

How to get there

Small Bay Hope Lodge offers it's own flight from Ft. Lauderdale Airport direct to Andros Island. The One-hour flight booked directly with the lodge. Additionally, Bahamassair offers daily scheduled service between Nassau and Andros Town airport (a 15-minute flight) and there  is a scheduled service direct from Miami.

    What else...

All cottages are located on the beach with either one king-size bed or two single  beds, overhead ceiling fans and private shower and toilets. Some cottages have king-size waterbeds. Two-bedroom cottages are available for families, for triple occupancy, and single
travelers who are willing to share bath with other single traveler. There is a supplement for single travelers for private bath.

Children under 12 eat their evening meal in the Gamesroom at 6:30pm. Complimentary babysitting service is provided 6pm-8:45pm each evening in the children 2-12 years old. Babysitting under 2 can be arranged at nominal charge. Free crib.

Dress Code: whatever comfortable - sandals.. t-shirt...sarong..

Electric current: 110ac - more or less...

Water: safe to drink and plenty of it!

Laundry Service: Available at the Lodge and for a nominal and total arbitrary charge.

Medicine: There is first-aid supply and a good clinic just three miles away.

Language: English of sorts...

Immigration requirements: Passport or proof of US citizenship.

Money: The Bahamian dollar is on par with US dollar and used interchangeably.

Payment: Prefer real thing (US or Bahamian), but will accept Plastic (the  major ones) - and (sometimes) hard labor....

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