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"During a public meeting at Bayley's Primary School Tuesday evening, St Philip residents received retails about the project and got a chance to air concerns about water distribution and access to the nearby beach.
Documents which the developer Harlequin Hotels & Resorts released at the three-hour meeting showed that more than 750 people would be employed during the construction phase and 1 500 will be needed to operate the complex that includes a five-star hotel.
In a presentation to the estimated 150 people, David Senior of architects Robertson Ward Associates Limited said the development would put a total of 1 242 beds on the market.
The tourist complex includes three hotel blocks, eight apartment blocks, 18 "plantation" houses, 42 one-bedroom cabanas, a 500-seat conference room, restaurants, shops and a spa village.
In an interview afterwards, Chairman of Harlequin, Dave Ames, told the DAILY NATION that the company is expected to spend between US$300 million and US$400 million on the Merricks project."
"Plans are well on stream for what is being described as the largest hotel resort in Barbados.
The project has been in the works for some time but is now nearer to reality.
The new billion dollar resort is to be built on 70 acres of oceanfront land in the area around Peat Bay.
The United Kingdom based developers, Harlequin Property, say it will comprise nearly one thousand hotel rooms including suites, apartments, custom homes and cabanas.
Merricks Barbados five star luxury spa resort will be made up of a five star hotel, about 10 villas and 600 apartments with over 12 hundred bedrooms..."
"England is deserted, Australia and New Zealand have merged, and the man who bought Ireland has killed himself.
They were designed to make Dubai the envy of the world: a series of paradise islands inhabited by celebrities and the super-rich reclaimed from the azure waters of the Arabian Gulf and shaped like a map of the Earth. It was called The World.
As millions of tonnes of rock were dumped into the sea for the foundations, timely leaks suggested that Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie were to buy Ethiopia, Sir Richard Branson was tipped to occupy England, while Rod Stewart would border him in Scotland.
Instead it has become the world’s most expensive shipping hazard, guarded by private security in fast boats and ringed by warning buoys to keep the curious away. A development that was meant to send Dubai’s star into the firmament of First World cities has been left to the mercy of the waves and the baking winds..."
"PRIME MINISTER DAVID THOMPSON is expected to take a four-nation trip shortly to meet with investors on several projects here that have been stalled.
Speaking at a Press conference at his Ilaro Court residence yesterday, Thompson said he would visit the Britain, Canada, United States and China.
He said there were more than 12 projects that had to be discussed, and he intended to sit down and see what concerns the investors had and what issues could be resolved.
Among those to be discussed are Four Seasons, Sam Lord's Castle, "some on the West Coast and one at Merricks in St Philips, some of which have groundwork to be done and some of which are almost ready and can proceed at a moments notice..."
- NationNews.com 9/16/09
"PM wants joint effort to restore Sam Lord's
by TRACY MOORE
PRIME MINISTER DAVID THOMPSON yesterday called for a joint venture or full private arrangement to redevelop Sam Lord's Castle that now lies in ruin.
The Prime Minister and several ministers and Government officials toured a number of St Philip sites yesterday,
"We don't want to have to use significant taxpayers resources except in facilitating some sort of joint-venture arrangement or alternatively a full private sector arrangement that protects the interests of Barbadians and delivers on what we want - beach access, protection of the Castle and perhaps mixed-use of other tourism development in an area of Barbados that needs to have further development."
He told the Press: "Let me make it clear, Sam Lord's Castle is a building of historic interest in Barbados. There was intended on that site a tourism development which would have seen a significant broadening of the product that Barbados offers, also in an area where it is critical for us to provide jobs and to have new economic infrastructure."
He added: "We are determined to see that particular project or one like it proceed. We are not interested in owning Sam Lord's Castle . . . . We are interested in seeing it developed in the interest of Barbadians.
"That is part of reasons why we feel that Sam Lord's Castle is important to be acquired at this time.
"We expect that as soon as we can complete our analysis of what can be done with the property . . . we will work with other persons to ensure that it is developed."
"Barbados, once the British Empire's most important colony, is still, with its historic riches and great houses galore, a temperamentally English enclave. Some parts of this Caribbean country even look like Devon and Somerset. But, says Isabel Fonseca, there is definitely another side..."
"MINISTER OF TOURISM Richard Sealy says Government has identifed the north-west corridor of the island, as an area for greater tourism development.
Sealy is confident tourism projects planned for the island's north coast will increase the economic and tourism activity in that "northern corridor" .
Speaking to the media during last Friday's official opening of Sugar Cane Club Hotel and Spa in Maynards, St Peter, Sealy pointed to a number of private/public sector tourism projects on stream in the north, among them a marina at Six Mens Bay, and a major tourism project at Harrison's Point where Rosewood Hotels and Resorts is scheduled to build a five-star resort on 82 acres.
The mixed-use property will comprise condominiums, a hotel, shops and other resort-related facilities. It is a Government-private sector venture.
Though Sealy said that the project was "not moving as fast as we would like" because of the current global economic conditions, he pointed out it was still on stream.
In addition,he said the marina at Six Mens Bay was supposed to start later this year.
Sealy said Sugar Cane Club Hotel and Spa fitted in well with the Government's plans for the north, and he welcomed the inland hotel which he said should meet the new visitor need for a "different holiday experience".
While regretting the demise of Villa Nova Hotel in St John, the minister maintained there was still scope for inland hotels.
"I think it (Sugar Cane Club Hotel and Spa) is a remarkable and welcome addition to the hotel plant in Barbados", he said, adding that the whole concept of taking a vacation and basing it merely on a beach experience had "expired".
The former 23-room Sugar Cane Club has been renovated at a cost of $12 million. There are now 41 suites, a penthouse and two private villas, as well as a host of art and sporting facilities.
Owner Bernie Weatherhead said the hotel was now a boutique hotel with a personable atmosphere, designed to attract a different type of clientele. (GC)
"Tourism is changing, trends are changing, people are no longer travelling merely for sun, sand and sea. Today's traveller is looking for an experience," Weatherhead said. (GC)"
“PLANS ARE AFOOT for the construction of a small Port in Speightstown, St Peter.
Minister of Tourism Richard Sealy said yesterday that basic adjustments would be made to the jetty in Speightstown to accommodate small vessels.
"Given the structure of the area, large cruise vessels will not be able to berth there, but officials are looking at the potential economic benefits of having another port," he said.
Although he could not say how soon vessels would start berthing, or what would be the overall cost of the project, Sealy said having a port in Speightstown would mean that visitors to the island coming in at that end would bring more life to the area and hopefully more revenue.
The minister made the comments while speaking at the launch of the Bajan Pride Expositions at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre, Two Mile Hill.
In an interview later Pierre Spenard, owner of Mangoes By The Sea Restaurant in Speightstown, said while he had heard of the plans, the whole town was "just sitting on a fence waiting to see what will happen".
He said a port in Speightstown would help restore the town to its historic stature, and would offer a chance to promote better community tourism.
"It would be nice to see Speightstown retain its character. It used to be the capital of this great country, and it's rich in heritage tradition and history."
He said a look at Arlington House Museum across the street would show the full life of the town. Spenard has been in that location for 14 years and said the town hadn't moved much, outside of Arlington House Museum and Archer's Hall.
Owner of Fisherman Pub and Beach Bar, Clement Armstrong, said he too had heard of the plan, even under the previous government, and although he would welcome the initiative, the question was when would it happen?
"I have welcomed the idea since 14 years ago, but I am still waiting to hear when it will start. We had trial runs one year and when the people came, the first thing they asked was 'where is Holetown?'
"Nobody knows about Speightstown; it is a black business place. But it's 20 minutes away from the Wildlife Reserve, Farley Hill, Bathsheba and Animal Flower Cave, so it would take a load off the traffic in Bridgetown and may bring good business," he said.”
"A major realtor is proposing the creation of an island north of the Bridgetown harbour exclusively for tourism.
Director of Altman Realty, Paul Altman says this will cushion Barbados' against any negative impact from the current global economic crisis.
He believes the project would absorb all of Barbados' unemployment as well as provide a much needed economic boost, in the wake of the world economic crisis.
He made the comments at the first luncheon of the year for the Barbados Association of Professional Engineers at the Barbados Yacht Club."
"Not much happens round here. The Sea Side Bar rum shop has but a couple of patrons. A short distance from the Soup Bowl, Robert LaMare is idling in a hammock on the porch of his Island Craft shop, which doesn't seem to sell a great deal except hammocks – which are currently out of stock. LaMare decamped to Barbados from upstate New York some 15 years ago and hasn't gone back. "I get two deliveries of post a month; the water bill and the lighting bill. I don't have a television or a cellphone. But I don't want or need anything.""Click here fore entire article and discussion.
"A Hollywood celebrity, a teenage death in a bathroom and the Church of Scientology is a toxic brew for global gossipmongers and, sure enough, the death of John Travolta's 16-year-old son, Jett, has triggered an orgy of internet chatter. Some of the speculation is being driven in an organised way by critics of the Church of Scientology ("Co$" in internet parlance).
According to the Travolta family, Jett suffered from regular seizures (around one a week) and had been diagnosed with Kawasaki syndrome, a rare childhood condition with some life-threatening symptoms but rarely fatal. Details of Jett's death, in the bathroom of Travolta's holiday home in Barbados after a reported seizure, are sketchy. The postmortem results will almost certainly be kept private by Travolta and his wife, Kelly Preston..."