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A Bahamanian landmark rises again

Reconnecting with old friends is the best, as proven by The Big Chill, or at least that's what the soundtrack seemed to imply. For a resort hooking Miami back up with a dear pal, check out the Bimini Big Game Club.

Sitting a boat-able 50 miles across the Gulf Stream, BBGC first opened in '36 as a formal sportfishing/dining club and ran as a resort through the last century, but was shuttered two years ago; it's just reopened as a hub for fishing, diving, and eco-tourism thanks to a $3.5 million renovation including a hibiscus & palm garden, a kidney-shaped swimming pool, and an interior done up in nautical wood, which you should never pull out on the first mate date. The 75-slip property's right on the Alice Town docks, while temporary-living options (all w/ wicker furniture, vintage shots of Bimini and sportfishing, and Guy Harvey marine art) include rooms that open to the pool, six bungalows within the garden, and four penthouse suites with views of the mangrove flats, plus a Jacuzzi, 40" hi-def TV, and "his" and "her" toilets, even though women don't poop. Their Big Game Bar & Grill lets you spy both dock and pool action, and offers apps like conch fritters/chowder and fish fingers, plus big-boy plates like slow-cooked St. Louis-style ribs, The Hemingway (12oz Angus w/ Bimini mac & cheese), and fish: either catch of the day or your catch of the day, done grilled, fried, broiled, blackened, or jerked -- which they've already been, since you offered them "free food", then stuck a hook in their mouth.

As for stuff to do, there're shark encounters via their association with the Bimini Shark Lab and wild dolphin interaction, as well as offshore fishing (for tuna, mahi, wahoo, grouper, and snapper), inshore flats fishing for bonefish, and a full Neal Watson dive program with reefs, walls, drifts, and wrecks -- exactly what you're gonna be if you come down here and reconnect with old friends.

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