Checking in at Atlantis in the Bahamas: Upgrades and a celebration

The coral-colored towers at the Atlantis, Paradise Island Resort are impossible to miss \0xAD– the property is arguably the most recognizable resort in the Caribbean.

Opened in 1998, The Royal Towers and the Atlantis Casino has grown immensely since its inception, and the 200-acre luxury resort currently offers 4,000 guestrooms, 40 restaurants and bars, and a 141-acre water park.

The resort has recently undergone some massive changes to mark the 25th anniversary of the Royal Towers, and the year-long celebration includes celebrity performances, themed dishes, and additions and upgrades across the property. I first visited Atlantis years ago on a cruise stopover, and I recently enjoyed a longer stay at the resort which helped me get better acquainted with the place, and its many upgrades.

The Updated Accommodations

In conjunction with the 25th anniversary, the resort launched a multimillion-dollar renovation for the Royal Towers, including the Bridge Suite that spans between the two buildings. The famous 4,740-square-foot luxury suite — which has hosted the likes of billionaires Oprah Winfrey and Bill Gates — is undergoing a top-to-bottom makeover. The 17th-floor suite will shed its former red, gold, and black decor for a more neutral color palette and modern furnishings, and renovations are expected to finish later this year. 

I stayed in an updated standard room, which had been fitted with plush carpeting, teal armchairs, hanging gold light fixtures and art installations incorporating natural materials on the walls. The floor-to-ceiling windows in the double Queen room made the room feel light and airy, and even at merely 400 square feet, there was lots of space to spread out. 

Though the resort has five hotel accommodation areas (including the Cove, a luxury all-suite property, and the Reef, a collection of stunning beach residences), I highly recommend a stay in the Royal Towers, especially for first-timers. The accommodations are centrally located to the pools, water park, spa, and casino, and they offer stunning views of the resort and beach.  

A room at Atlantis Paradise Island in the Bahamas. The resort updated its rooms in its Royal Towers with teal armchairs, plush carpeting and art made from natural materials.

New attractions and amenities

The main feature at Atlantis is the massive water park, Aquaventure, and it’s easy to spend an entire day enjoying all the park has to offer. I rode the mile-long lazy river (several times) while my youngest child enjoyed Poseidon’s Playzone water park, which has new slides.

There’s also a new tennis and pickleball center.

For play of a different sort, the Atlantis Casino underwent a revamp, including the expansion of two of the casino lounges.

Atlantis introduced an amenity called Sapphire Services, a concierge service that includes special activities like beach dinners and boat charters to nearby islands and one-on-one educational tours at Dolphin Cay, the resort’s conservation and rehabilitation facility.

For guests looking to elevate their trip to the Bahamas and explore some off-property activities, the Sapphire Service concierges can create unique, customized itineraries.

Dining options and special meals

With 40 bars and restaurants on property, it’s nearly impossible to try everything during a single stay (though my kids would have loved the challenge). The resort is home to acclaimed restaurants like Nobu and Fish by Jose Andres, and this summer the resort will introduce Paranza at The Cove, a modern Italian restaurant concept by Michelin-starred Chef Michael White.

White is the former owner of Michelin-starred New York restaurants Marea and Ai Fiori. And when Paranza at the Cove opens it means there will be three restaurant concepts by Michelin-starred chefs at Atlantis.   

Other additions to the resort include The Dilly Club, a coffeehouse during the day and a craft cocktail lounge at night. And for those wanting something a bit more casual, a Shake Shack will debut this summer and offer resort-specific menu items.

During my stay, I hopped around to a few restaurants, but our favorite was Olive’s, a Mediterranean restaurant that overlooks the resort’s marina. As part of Atlantis’ anniversary celebrations, many restaurants offered special dishes, and Olive’s entry was Celebrations of the Sea, a medley of salmon, scallops, and prawns.

Another fun feature was the Royal, a signature drink offered across the resort. The blue-hued anniversary cocktail includes vodka, Blue Curacao and Angostura bitters, topped with prosecco.

Nighttime Entertainment

Atlantis attracts talent from all over the world and there are plenty of live performances planned this year.

The resort’s Music Making Waves kicked off earlier this year in celebration of the 25th anniversary, and I attended the Chainsmokers concert during my stay.  Acts like Pitbull, Ashanti, and Little Big Town are scheduled for later this year.  

Guests at Atlantis can also experience the excitement of Junkanoo twice a week with Junkanoo performances at 9 p.m. Tuesdays and Fridays in the Marina Village. Perfect for the whole family, Junkanoo performances feature trumpet players, drums, and elaborately decorated costumes that are part of Bahamian culture. 

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