October 31, 2019
(12:05 p.m. EDT) -- Royal Caribbean will open its first Royal Beach Club in Antigua in 2021, available only to passengers of Royal Caribbean cruise ships. It is the first of several planned Royal Beach Clubs.
The Royal Beach Club at Fort James (located near St. John's cruise port) will offer a half-mile of beach, along with a large pool, swim-up bar, private cabanas and lots of water toys.
"The Royal Beach Club Collection is an adventure we cannot wait to reveal to our guests," said Michael Bayley, president and CEO of Royal Caribbean International. "With Royal Beach Club, we're starting with a great day at a beautiful beach, and adding even more services and activities. Each location will feature local food and music, family activities and custom attractions to give everyone plenty of options on how to spend their day by the ocean."
While specific details of the beach club are not yet available, the line did reveal it will offer island-style BBQs and live music, along with attractions such as wave runners, paddle boarding, snorkeling, a family splash pool and a separate pool with swim-up bar.
Cruisers will be able to choose whether they want to spend the day at the Royal Beach Club or do something else in Antigua.
Though Antigua was mostly spared by Hurricane Irma in 2017, its sister island, Barbuda was badly hit. The partnership between Royal Caribbean and the twin-island state is expected to help both islands recover.
"The government of Antigua and Barbuda welcomes this multimillion-dollar investment into our tourism product by Royal Caribbean," said the Honorable Charles Fernandez, minister of tourism, economic development and investments for the government of Antigua and Barbuda.
"The project will also provide meaningful employment to Antiguans and Barbudans for both the construction phase and the operations of the project for years to come."
Royal Caribbean is also opening a series of Perfect Day island experiences around the world. Where the Royal Beach Clubs use just part of a location, Perfect Days encompass an entire area. The line's first Perfect Day is Perfect Day at CocoCay, which opened in the Bahamas in May 2019. Royal Caribbean announced its second Perfect Day will be at Lelepa in Vanuatu and will open in 2022.
Virgin Voyages is also opening its own beach club, simply named The Beach Club, a private venue for Virgin Voyages cruise passengers located on a stretch of beach in Bimini, in the Bahamans.
Though the expansive beach club concept is new to the cruise industry, Carnival has offered something similar in the Dominican Republic for several years. Amber Cove is a cruise passenger-only complex with a large swimming pool, including a swim-up bar and a lazy river, along with an open and closed water slide, and plenty of shops and bars.