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Once Forgotten, Lantana Returns!

By Helen Jardin & Kageaki Smith
18 photos | Jun 07, 2010

While riding his moped through Somerset on a family vacation back in 2006 hedge fund manager Lawrence Doyle spotted a beautiful old Bermuda property sitting empty along the railway trail.  To his delight, when he investigated further he discovered the property was up for sale.

Today he is only three years away from the completion of what developers are touting simply the most satisfying place on earth the new Lantana.

Last Friday Mr. Doyle was in Bermuda to unveil his plans for the property, which include hotel condominiums and residences, a beach club and pool.

"When I first saw the property it was intact but the old cottages were sitting empty," Mr. Doyle explained. "It has the waterfront location, the hillside, the vegetation whats not to like?"

The site was put up for sale in the summer of 2006, with an asking price of $18.5 million. Mr. Doyle purchased the property two years later and plans to invest $135 million out of his own pocket in its redevelopment. The 9.4-acre property will house a 28-unit cottage colony, with waterfront restaurant, private beach, a full service restaurant, private water shuttle, secluded sun decks, croquet lawn and a 24-hour fitness centre and spa, as well as providing its guests with room service, high speed Internet access, concierge service, housekeeping service and gold membership at Newstead Belmont Hills.

Each of the hotel residences will be between 2,000 to 4,000 square feet and have three or four bedrooms, a full kitchen and dining area, living room, multiple bathrooms and will be fully landscaped.

There will also be one and two bedroom suites available. Owners can purchase a hotel residence located at the North end of the property and then choose the design of that building. Kevin Petty of Moongate Resorts Ltd. will develop and manage the cottage colony.

The Planning Department is currently running the rule over the proposed development. "When I eventually purchased it I thought the plans for the property were too dense for what I wanted to do," Mr. Doyle explained.

Now, after plans were changed, the cottages have much more breathing room. There are hotel residences which people will be able to purchase almost immediately. Dozens of the original buildings were demolished eight months ago. And, of course, Mr. Doyle says he plans to keep one of the residences for himself and his family.

There have been a number of proposals to redevelop and reopen Lantana over the years, which opened as one of the first cottage colony resorts in the 1950s. It had a reputation for friendliness and first class service until its closure in 1998 and was a hot spot for tourists because of its immaculate gardens, Sunday brunch and water ski shows.

"I hope it retains all the charm it had for 50 years," Mr. Doyle said of the property. "It was very successful for many years. There will be new cottages with a new feel but in pretty much the same spots as the old ones. The uniting theme of the cottages is still being worked out."

All photos by Kageaki Smith

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Great news! We stayed at the Lantana Colony Club in May 1960 for our honeymoon. It was a wonderful place and the staff were just great!
canderville Apr 26,2013