Bahamas Holiday
by Gloria Glonski, 1998  

I had polio and am a paraplegic, so what I experienced may not be the same for everyone. We stayed mainly on the resort, beach or nearby shopping areas.

From my point of view the people in the Bahamas are in the early stages of awareness of the need to accommodate people with disabilities. However, they wanted to do anything they could to assure that we had our needs met.

My husband and I went to the Princess Resort and flew out of Memphis (flies out of Florida, too) on a private owned jet from the Princess Resort. When we arrived in the Bahamas it was a very small airport and you landed on the strip. Only a portable staircase was available for exiting the plane, but they immediately provided assistance in helping me to exit. You picked up your luggage and they had cars, limo, or vans to pick you up and take you to the resort. (None of the vans had chair lifts.).

This resort has two locations; we stayed at the older location in a ground floor room. Bathrooms were small, but doorways were adequate. However, I’m not sure that these bathrooms would work for everyone since they were so small and only a bathtub was available.

The resort has new high-rise (only a couple of years old) located that is that is across the street from where we stayed. I did not see any of the rooms, but think this might be a better option to stay (worth checking on) as far as bathrooms go.

The facility has added ramps everywhere, however, some were steep and you needed assistance to use them. We did not have any problems with accessibility with anything we did with the exception of one show at the Casino. That show had two steps getting in. As accommodating as everyone seemed to be, if help were needed then it would be provided.

We went to about seven different restaurants while we were there and all were accessible and food was wonderful. We had to take public transportation to the beach because buses from the hotel did not have wheelchair lifts. Beaches were well kept and only about a mile from the resort. Shopping area was across the street from the Princess resort and most shops were accessible, some might have had one step only.

Negative items were public accessible rest rooms were scarce and public transportation did not have chair lifts. However, we were there to rest and soak of the sun and forget about work, so even with these drawbacks I would go again in a heartbeat because of the local people that we encountered there and their desire to be of assistance when needed.

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