TOLL FREE USA\CANADA
Getting to Andros Island, The Bahamas is very easy!
We may be slightly off the beaten path, but that's a big
part of our appeal. Even though we're not in the center of a big tourist hub (thankfully!) we're really quite accessible.
(more info on getting to Andros)
For those of you who have never visited Small Hope, the Lodge was built by Canadian transplant Dick Birch. Together with wife Joan and their three children he opened the place in 1960 as the first dive-dedicated resort in the Bahamas. It started with four cabins.
His brother joined him. The ensuing years brought 16 more cabins, two more wives, step children, adopted children, former and future husbands, in-laws, out-laws, and a legacy of intertwined lives that continues on to this day. Half a dozen family members have been laid to rest here, some far too soon. Dick himself died in 1996--but his extended family carries on the vision. (See "In Memoriam")
Today, Dick's son Jeff runs the Lodge, with considerable help from Assistant Manager, Mike Hornby. Dick's widow, Mona, now lives in Ft. Lauderdale, FL, where she helps us out from time to time while teaching college English.
Family members living fulltime on Andros include the Douglas clan--son Peter, wife Gabrielle, and kids Cara, Ginger, and Adam. (Cara has graduated from college at Howard University in D.C. and is now living in the D.C. area, Ginger has graduated from the College of the Bahamas in Nassau and is now at school in England, Adam is attending college in Savannah, GA). Jeff 's kids, Casey and Brian, are seen from time to time as Casey goes to college at Macalester in Minnesota and Brian is attending King's college in Canada.
Family members who have homes on Andros and can often be seen about include; Dick's daugter, Margo and Alec and their daughters, Lauren (in college in Canada) and Danielle (after graduating from college in Canada, is now living in Nassau and working fulltime training dolphins); Dick's son Scot and wife Stella and their sons, Teano and Tecaco.
Moose, Margo's son and one of our Dive Instructors, had a son on October 20, 2005.
Dick's daughter Heidi and her husband Capt. Robert (with sons Kalen and Nyall) still call Andros home for part of the year, and have a house here.
Holidays often bring in more family members, including Joan and Duke Hanna from Nassau; Rosi and Helge Lovdal from Norway; Krista and Evan Lippincott (with sons Andrew and William) from Maryland; and Topher and Priete Kurth (with kids Tecoco, Teva, and Hede) from Washington State.
Tracy Frazier now lives back in Lowell, Massachusetts with her family, Skeebo, Mia, Mariah, and Harrington, and works part time for Small Hope assisting with marketing and bookeeping.
Staff members are a part of the family at Small Hope, and many of our guests get on a first-name basis with them. So for those who are wondering, "Who's who"? This is the roll call:
Our dive staff consists of some old and new faces. Jeff, Peter, Mike and Moose are always around and Amanda, Dennis, Loren, and Ashley are committed to keeping up the tradition of the Small Hope philosophy which is "treat every guest as a part of the family."
We have Americans, Canadians, and Bahamians in the current mix.
The rest of our staff has quite a few of the "old familiar faces:" Inez, Florine, Shonelle, Relda and Sharon take care of the cottages and laundry; and our office personnel is Anastasia, Bhruna, Denice, and Nicky.
Wait staff include Judy Anne and Ashanti. When we need extra help for the dining area, Shonell is happy to fill in.
Our cooks are Irene, Michelle, and Denise, lead by our food and beverage manager/executive chef, Renauldo. They are doing wonders revamping our menu!
Maintenance and yard crew include Terrence H. (the main man!), Austin, Abba, Alvin and Franco.
Jeff Cartright, Glister, Bradley, and Ricardo are our fishing guides.
Our bar is well stocked and tended by Daverly and Fredina M.
And yes, marine biologist Tim Turnbull is still on the island from time to time, and actively keeps his eye on our reef
Life goes on at Small Hope Bay, as it has for the last forty-odd years, in a chaotic and often passionate fashion. Always there is "The Story": The setting is magnificent, the characters most interesting, and the plot line classic!
TOLL FREE USA/CANADA