So here’s what happened. I was on vacation with my two young daughters for Spring Break. I opted to take them on a cruise because they had never been. We sailed out of New York in April and avoided airfare for four to south Florida. It was a simple seven-day itinerary which sailed to Port Canaveral Florida, the cruise line’s private island and Nassau Bahamas. Incidentally, the girls had so much fun! I repeatedly reminded them that this was “their” vacation and they could decide the activities in which we partake.
In Nassau, I announced (since no other formal requests were made), we would be exploring downtown. My original plan was to take them to the pirate museum. But I decided to see how the day went before making promises I couldn’t keep. In addition, I opted to NOT visit Atlantis. Visiting this paradise island oasis is a vacation onto itself and a pricey one at that. I’m not going to editorialize on the value of an Atlantis vacation because I haven’t stepped foot on that property for years. But I know they charge a pretty penny for premium experiences.
Anyhoo, we began exploring downtown and the girl stepped into the Gucci store and various other shops. But we happened upon a store that looked brand new to me. It was bright, filled with pottery, art, jewelry and an attentive sales staff. The girls marveled at the bowls (handmade and imported from Turkey). I noted the rug and carpet selection. One of the girls spotted this small art studio with a tray of cloudy water and a small paint set which appeared to be in-use by someone not currently present. At that moment, a kind a gentle man of about 50 said “girls! Let your uncle show you”. Naturally I asked “how much” he declared “it’s free”. I was skeptical. After all, this was the Caribbean and tourism dollars are precious. The man (who turned out to be one of the three owners) sat with my two children and their friend and each created an 11 x 17 piece of art on the spot. I couldn’t believe it. They girls were going crazy playing the paints and obviously working with an artist who loved to teach. I would say we spent a half an hour in that store or more. The owner even wowed the girls with a couple of magic tricks. The man treated us like we were the most important people in his world in the time we were there. The girls each purchased a $10 bracelet and we left almost in disbelief at how much fun we had. Even as I write this post I have a smile on my face at how kind and gracious he was to the children and to adults as well.
The name of the store is Turquoise Gallery and it’s located on Bay Street just three doors down from Parliament and essentially next door to the Gucci store. Here is a link to their Facebook Page. I had been to Nassau just a year prior and I didn’t remember this store and I thought I would have. But as I spoke to one of the other owners, he informed me they just opened three months ago. It all made sense. As you know I rarely dedicate an entire blog post to just one store as I value your time. Incidentally, if you wish to watch an episode of Beyond Your Backyard which includes Nassau, you can here. But here’s the point. Obviously if you’re travel plans include Nassau, stop by Turquoise Gallery and say hello to my new friends. And here’s the other point. The old saying “noting ventured, nothing gained” couldn’t be more true. The girls and I set out to explore and found a gem of a place less than 500 yards from our cruise ship.
Incidentally, if you wish to learn more about Nassau, Bahamas, have a look at our Nassau page and watch the full episode of Beyond Your Backyard.
I am on a mission to get you traveling more often. As the host of the Emmy award- winning, nationally syndicated television television for PBS and the Create channel, "Beyond Your Backyard," I travel (on average) 25 weeks per year. I am very grateful for the opportunity to meet cool people, experience new places, eat delicious food and work with the best production crew in the world. Hopefully, through this blog, you will join me on my travels and be reminded just how exciting it is to be alive!