New accommodations, yacht charters and milestone celebrations in BVI.
TORTOLA, BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS – For the first time since the 1980s, access to the British Virgin Islands (BVI) is getting much easier with daily nonstop service from Miami to Beef Island/Tortola, via American Airlines beginning June 1. The game-changing three-hour flight eliminates the need for travelers to connect in Puerto Rico or St. Thomas, getting them to the stunning Territory with ample time to enjoy their final destination, whether chartering a yacht or staying in a luxury villa, resort, or private island escape.
“As the first nonstop flight from the U.S. in decades, this is a monumental opportunity to bring more North American travelers to the crystal-clear waters of our beloved island-destination,” said Clive McCoy, Director of Tourism, British Virgin Islands Tourist Board & Film Commission. “We have one of the most beautiful collections of isles and cays anywhere in the world and look forward to offering our new and returning visitors an assortment of experiences in The Sailing Capital of the World.”
New Nonstop Flight Service
In a much anticipated decision to expand air service between the U.S. and the BVI, American Airlines will commence roundtrip nonstop daily flights from Miami International Airport (MIA) to Terrance B. Lettsome International Airport (EIS) on June 1. The airlift will run through August 14 and restart in November after the fall low season. The new air service is expected to bring in an estimated 2,128 monthly passengers to the BVI.
Daily flights from Miami to Beef Island will depart at 10:07 a.m. and arrive at 1:06 p.m. Return flights will depart at 1:47 p.m. and arrive at 4:25 p.m.
Accommodation & Charter News
BVI has expanded its accommodation options for visitors with new boutique properties on award-winning beaches and new-to-market charter companies allowing guests to easily island hop.
- A new concept in tourism, CornucopiaBVI, is the perfect destination for small groups looking for an idyllic escape. The Country French Caribbean abode features four exquisitely designed deluxe rooms and one superior suite. Each offers handcrafted furniture, high count luxury linens, locally sourced bath products, and luxe amenities including Matouk bathrobes. Comfortably sized for destination weddings, corporate meetings, retreats and more, the adults-only accommodation includes a daily gourmet cooked-to-order breakfast and pets are welcome.
- Virgin Gorda Villa Rentals has expanded its portfolio and now offers 32 luxury villas around the island of Virgin Gorda in Mango Bay, Little Trunk Bay, and Leverick Bay. The newly built and upgraded villas offer beachfront living and amazing ocean views.
- The Hideout is the only luxury resort steps away from White Bay Beach on Jost Van Dyke. The seven-villa resort offers private plunge pools in each villa and is ideally situated directly across from Hendo’s Hideout, the island’s well-known restaurant run by the O’Neal-Henderson family since 2016.
- New charter companies continue to sail into the BVI. Starting in January, Dream Caribbean Blue made Scrub Island Resort, Spa & Marina its official operating base, utilizing the private-island’s 55-slip marina off the east end of Tortola for its 14 sailing catamarans.
The Sailing Capital of the Caribbean will celebrate two major milestones this year.
- The annual BVI Spring Regatta and Sailing Festival celebrates its 50th anniversary this spring. Kicking off on March 27, the seven-day event begins with the Sailing Festival featuring warm up events and friendly racing to various islands. Then on March 31, the three-day regatta starts with a diverse fleet of larger yachts, squibs and charters ready to race and celebrate 50 years of adventures that continue to keep sailors and families coming back year after year.
- Bitter End Yacht Club, one of the most renowned properties in BVI, will be celebrating its 50th anniversary this year as well. Built on family values, Bitter End Yacht Club paved the way in bareboat chartering, bringing the magic of North Sound to more adventurous visitors. With a newly imagined nautical village and marina lofts, the property remains committed to celebrating nature, its sense of adventure, and love of the water.
Water Adventure Trends
BVI is well known for its beautiful waters that boast flat, steady tradewinds, making it an ideal destination for thrill-seeking guests. From sailing and winging to diving into its abundant marine life, BVI is at the forefront of water-based experiences for travelers.
- “Winging,” otherwise known as wing surfing or wing foiling, is a watersport rapidly growing in popularity over recent years. Combining elements of windsurfing, kitesurfing, surfing and foiling, it uses a handheld inflatable sail to harness the wind while riding over the water on a hydrofoil board. The trending sport is now offered at multiple properties throughout BVI including Oil Nut Bay, Saba Rock, Bitter End Yacht Club and via local vendors including British Virgin Islands Stand Up Paddle Company.
- Scuba diving in BVI continues to draw travelers due to its clear water, numerous shipwrecks and vibrant coral reefs. Experience curated diving experiences with Dive BVI, which has three custom dive boats departing from Virgin Gorda, Scrub Island and Saba Rock; Blue Water Divers, which visits over 60 dive spots from Nanny Cay in Tortola; or the BVI Scuba Organization, which works with the local dive shops on connecting guests with the underwater world in the British Virgin Islands. Since the destruction of Hurricane Irma, many dive sites have debuted such as the former restaurant and bar Willy T, which has been transformed into a pirate themed underwater playground for divers to explore.
Vicky is the co-founder of TravelDailyNews Media Network where she is the Editor-in Chief. She is also responsible for the daily operation and the financial policy. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Tourism Business Administration from the Technical University of Athens and a Master in Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Wales.
She has many years of both academic and industrial experience within the travel industry. She has written/edited numerous articles in various tourism magazines.