With work progressing well on the US$65 million Sandals property in Christ Church and the Sandals Beaches Resort in St. Peter, to come on stream, Minister of Tourism and International Transport, Richard Sealy, is confident that the brand will be a significant addition to the island???s tourism offerings.
He made this observation during a press briefing following a tour of the construction site at Dover, Christ Church, last Friday.
Also on tour were Minister of Finance and Economic Affairs, Christopher Sinckler; Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Tourism, Senator Irene Sandiford-Garner; Chairman of Sandals, Gordon Stewart, and other officials of Sandals.
Mr. Sealy said: ???It is hard when you have had a tour like this that you don???t start to anticipate???without being too previous, what exactly you can look forward to in St. Peter. That is a larger footprint and we are looking forward to a Sandals Beaches like none other. Between these two resorts, I think it is a significant addition to our tourism product offerings.???
The Tourism Minister said the Sandals brand was very strong in the North American market and was confident that the ???incredible marketing network??? will bring incremental business to Barbados.
???In many ways it is a symbiotic relationship. [In other words], it is a partnership in which we benefit from each other. We are taking Sandals to the UK market and of course, Sandals is taking Barbados to the US market and in essence, it is working.???
He expressed gratitude to Minister of Finance and Economic Affairs, Christopher Sinckler, for being an ???advocate and pushing for this project from the start??? and to other officials in the Ministry of Finance and the Barbados Tourism Investment Inc. for working hard to make the project a reality.
???I am happy with the project and certainly what I see out there suggests to me that we will be able to meet that deadline. It is also good to hear from officials in the US office that Sandals is fairly sold out already so we have to make it???if not the [tourists] will go and stay somewhere else,??? Mr. Sealy observed.
The 282-room hotel, expected to be completed in January 2015, will have nine restaurants and the world-renowned Red Lane Spa, among its many attractive offerings.