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Faith Fest 2017 and island fun: It is better in the Bahamas

Written By | Apr 21, 2017

FREEPORT, BAHAMAS, April 21, 2017  – Though the phrase “It’s better in the Bahamas” has been memorized by every travel agent in the world, but “what” is better, and how is it better?

The wafting of “better” begins when first stepping off the airplane: the light breeze, the floral smells, the brilliant blue skies and all Bahamian women are beautiful. Their smiles, their hospitality, their inner and outer beauty make an immediate impression.

Visiting Freeport for the FaithFest 2017, allowed plenty of opportunities to experience just why things are better in the Bahamas as hundreds of persons from the United States of America, Africa, Europe, the Caribbean and The Bahamas, gathered together for a three-day gospel event.

Bishop Fernandez and members of FaithFest.

According to Bishop Fernandez,

“Believers should always be walking in faith and living their best lives – now, and not apologizing for taking a vacation. Faith Fest is a time to bridge cultures and bring people together from around the world and The Bahamas, for an integration of one faith, while serving one God for a weekend of spiritual rejuvenation and physical relaxation.  It is a time for us to refuel from our busy day-to-day activities and experience transformation in our lives”.

According to the event’s press room, visitors to Faith Fest were daily spirit filled word sessions from Bishop Henry Fernandez, Bishop Cardinal McIntosh, Pastor Sheryl Brady; a late night comedy show with famed comedian Marcus Wiley and music performances by gospel recording artists Tye Tribbet, James Fortune and Jonathan Nelson.

It was an incredible gathering of faith and unity for a very diverse and interesting group of people including some of the more than three-hundred thousand people (nearly half the population of the city of Indianapolis) scattered over a hundred thousand square miles on seven hundred islands and more than two thousand cays.

There is a lot to see, and experience, in and among the Islands.

Freeport, located on the Grand Bahama’s Island, is the second most visited island of the archipelago. Freepost was founded by American businessman and visionary Wallace Groves (1902-1988), who, in the 1950s, pioneered the duty-free port that would thrive on commerce.

According to the Bahama’s Guide, today Freeport welcomes more than half a million tourists annually. The harbor is currently undergoing an expansion that will make it the finest deep-water container transshipment port in the hemisphere.

The harbor’s close relationship with Freeport International Airport, a 10-minute drive away, together with the excellent tug and piloting services, makes it an ideal center for homeporting.

Garden of the Groves, now a Bahamas national park
Image by Tim Kern

A centerpiece of Freeport is Lighthouse Pointe at the Grand Lucayan Resort, one of the areas hardest-hit by last year’s devastating Hurricane Matthew. Here one finds the vitality and spirit of the Bahamian people perseveres. The complex has reopened and there were hundreds of guests, enjoying the gorgeous beach, arched swimming pool, separate lap pool, spa and weight room.

Multiple restaurants offering every level of cuisine from casual to elegant are available.

The resort offers a variety of “all-inclusive” or room only packages. Military personal should ask about packages with military discounts.

Image courtesy of

While commons spaces are beautifully redesigned, it is often the personal space that makes or breaks any vacation.  Spacious rooms feature a wall of glass with doors that open onto the balcony and remarkable views of the blue harbor.

Large, comfortable pillowtop beds and an elegant bath that features showers with glorious torrents of lovely H2O splashing on your head, are an invigorating start or cleansing end to your day.

The Grand Lucayan’s room featured a guest-controlled dehumidifier/ionizer, efficient and quiet, quickly keeps the room comfortable despite the heat and humidity outside.

Grand Lucayan staff complete the experience, each person encountered being friendly, knowledgeable, and extra-competent. The wait staff remembered names and preferences after just one visit, and their suggestions were helpful.

Stepping above and beyond, a small crisis was encountered and solved by an observant staff. One of the main events of the conference would be a “white party,” where everyone was expected to wear white. Being from Indianaplise well before Memorial Day, no white slacks were available within a thirty-mile radius of my home and I was faced with a fashion faux pas. Asking for help, a lobby security guard overheard my plight and with plenty of time to spare, Tito’s delivered a fashionable ensemble of white linen shirt and pants  to my room

Of course, we tried all the recommended dishes, especially conch (pronounced, once and for all, as “konk”), in stews, soups, a sandwich, and as fritters. I noticed “Barracuda: E.A.Y.O.R.” (eat at your own risk) on the menu at “Out da Sea,” a car wash and detailer / restaurant which somehow works as a

Apparently, some small portion of the barracuda population is randomly poisonous. “We cannot tell until someone eats it,” our friendly waitress said. I ordered it anyway, and I might say the risk was worth it (delicious – tastes like chicken), but then again, I didn’t get a poisonous portion.

So, the hype is true and it is indeed “better in the Bahamas.” Perfect for relaxation, a vacation, honeymoon, wedding, water sports, fishing, diving or doing anything or nothing at all.

Prices range from “upper middle class” to “McDonald’s,” and everything is friendly, efficient, helpful… and better. Visit.

If you go:

Lighthouse Pointe at the Grand Lucayan Resort
Reservations 1-855-708-6671
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Tim Kern

Tim Kern taught economics for fifteen years, and discovered that understanding life is easy; it’s recognizing reality that takes practice. He holds a music degree, and later earned an MBA in finance from Northwestern University. He has lived across the US, and now makes his home in Anderson, Indiana.