The “official” clearing house for America’s Cup accommodations and packaged is americascuptravel.com. This site offers packages ranging from the Fairmont Southhampton’s Qualifier and Challenger packages for $2000 per person for five nights…all the way to the Reef’s Ultimate Finals package at $7500 per person for 12 nights. Many packages include water viewing and some include transport to the race course. A quick check of hotel individual websites shows many are already sold out.
For house rentals, one can try the usual suspects (VRBO, HomeAway and Air BnB.) At press time, VRBO shows several homes in the Somerset Village area still available for the last two weeks in June (projected Finals dates). Prices range from $200 per night for a studio to $675 per night for a three bedroom house. Somerset Village and nearby Sandy’s Parish are ideal locations. They are located on the main (and only) road leading to the Dockyards and are close enough to walk to the venue if public transport proves to be a problem.
Although the island is only 22 miles long, be advised that in the best of times, it is an hour cab or bus ride from one end of Bermuda (St. Georges Parish) to the Dockyards at the other end. Staying in Hamilton offers the advantage of numerous restaurants and places to stay…plus it would be easy to catch a ferry to the venue from the centrally-located dock area.
Another option is to work with a local leasing agent. Fiona Campbell, president of Bermuda Accommodations, says her office has been “swamped” with inquiries. “My advice,” she says, “is to book early or pay more later.” You can reach Fiona by email at: [email protected]. Her company website is: bermudarentals.com.
A word of advice: the Bermudans are still working out the details of transportation. For sure, there will be some staging area near the AC Village where busses and taxis will drop off spectators. Depending on where this is, it could result in a several mile hike into the site itself. Bermuda also has a plethora of water taxis and ferry boats. Plans to run extra service from the major hotels and downtown Hamilton area are in the works.
“If it was me,” says Peter Rusch,” I’d come by boat in a 40-60-foot vessel; make arrangements with a local yacht club for berthing…and catch all the action from the water.”gotobermuda.com or acbda.com for updates on mooring fields convenient to the venue and for the latest on transportation and accommodations.
Bermuda sure to roll out the red carpet for America’s Cup crews and visitors. Be sure to sample a “Swizzle” at one of the islands watering holes. It’s a fruit juice concoction laces with Gosling’s 151 proof dark rum. And while you’re at it, ask the barkeep for a “floater” of rum on top.