Bermuda was recovering Sunday from the wrath of Hurricane Fabian, a category 3 storm that was the worst to hit the island in 40 to 50 years.
Bermuda International Airport was slated to re-open late Sunday afternoon; many hotels and shoreline restaurants and bars suffered severe damage, according to published reports.
Among the casualties, the Fairmont Southampton reportedly suffered extensive damage, and at the Sonesta Beach Resort, the roof, rooms and restaurant took heavy blows.
The Bermuda Dept. of Tourism confirmed that those two properties are temporarily closed, as is the Pink Beach Club.
“Tourism entities are in the process of determining the extent of the damage Fabian caused and are working to restore a sense of normalcy as quickly as possible,” the Tourism Dept. said. “As of Sunday, crews were working to restore electrical power to those areas most affected by the storm. Telephone service was restored early on Saturday and road crews were repairing damage to the causeway connecting the rest of the island to the airport.”
In addition, the recently refurbished Mickey`s and Caf? Lido restaurants at Elbow Beach were totaled, reports said.
Fabian hit Bermuda Friday afternoon with maximum sustained winds around 90 mph and gusts peaking at 120 mph. Cruise lines had already departed Bermuda for smoother seas Thursday while airlines canceled flights. In addition to canceling its flights, American will enable customers booked for travel to or from Bermuda from Sept. 4 to 9 to rebook as late as Sept. 9 without fees or penalties.
US Airways canceled flights and extended a flexible travel policy whereby customers with itineraries with travel to and from Bermuda between Sept. 5 and 10 can make changes to their itineraries and US Airways will waive the standard change fee and advance reservation and ticketing requirements.
On the hotel front, several properties on the island closed Friday due to Hurricane Fabian`s then-impending arrival.
The Pink Beach Club & Cottages—in Tucker`s Town on the island`s south shore—closed for the weekend, arranging alternate accommodations for its guests at other on-island hotels as well as calling all incoming guests and postponing their arrivals. Guests who had to cancel their trip before traveling received a full refund and have the option to postpone their trip for up to one year from the scheduled arrival.
in addition, the Sonesta Beach Resort Bermuda also closed Friday and Saturday, relocating its guests to the Fairmont Southampton, which also took in some 40 police officers from the island`s barracks, some displaced residents and its own guests and employees, leaving it with about 1,000 guests for the weekend.