By TANYA SMITH-CARTWRIGHT
EVEN though Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis has stressed that all guests staying more than five days in The Bahamas have to take a mandatory antigen test, Atlantis Resort’s guests will not be required to do so as they will be engaged in a “Vacation in Place” programme, Tourism Officials said.
Just yesterday while speaking in the House of Assembly, Prime Minister Minnis made it clear that, apart from presenting a negative COVID-19 test upon arrival to The Bahamas, all visitors staying more than five days would have to take an additional antigen test.
Yesterday The Tribune quoted Atlantis’ website as saying, “Registered guests whom vacation/stay in the safe zone for the entire duration of their stay do not have to undergo multiple testing, unlike other properties in The Bahamas, where additional COVID testing is required upon arrival and again on day five.”
Joy Jibrilu, Director General, Ministry of Tourism and Aviation said Atlantis has been given the go ahead to engage in ‘a global concept’.
“Atlantis has made several announcements informing that they are creating a travel bubble so that when their guests enter their property, it would be the same as if they are in quarantine,” she said. “They will not be allowed to leave and includes their staff members. So they would’ve tested everybody, including their staff members, in that bubble.
“As a result of them creating a bubble, where once you enter you do not leave. they’ve been allowed to not apply the five-day test for the time being for their visitors who may be staying for five days or longer. Those who stay for five days or longer will be in that protected bubble. So it’s a global concept.”
Contacted yesterday after the Prime Minister’s reiteration of the mandatory test requirement, Atlantis told The Tribune it had no comment to make. Revisiting the resort’s “Frequently Asked Questions” section on its website, clearly there was a softening of language in regards to COVID-19 prevention requirements as it pertained to Taxi drivers, but there was no change in the non-requirement of Atlantis’ guests to take a second antigen test while staying there.
The Tribune contacted the Office of the Prime Minister for commentary on the matter, but was told to contact the Ministry of Tourism, even though it was the Prime Minister who stressed that the five-day antigen test was mandatory.
Atlantis’ FAQ also noted, “It is important to note that due to the fluidity of the COVID-19 pandemic, both in The Bahamas and worldwide, the safety protocols and procedures are subject to change.”
Ms. Jibrilu said in many places in the world “a safe corridor” or “a bubble” is being used and because of that, they have certain allowances. She said Atlantis has kept the “Vacation in Place Model” just for the resort to “open up and see how it goes”.
Amused 2 years, 6 months ago
Smt always someone group or persons being special privileged than others. It never stops
TalRussell 2 years, 6 months ago
Comrade Solomon Kerzner the African who developed what would become recognized as one of the world's well-known 5-star hotels, the Atlantis, must be turnin' over in his grave once was briefed on the goin'-on's over at Paradise Island. Solomon could've imagined his baby playing second-fiddle to the more savvy Baha Mar's response COVID-19. Shakehead once for upyeahvote, twice for not?
tribanon 2 years, 6 months ago
joeblow 2 years, 6 months ago
Time to change the FNM's election slogan to its "dem" people time!
moncurcool 2 years, 6 months ago
The Director General of Tourism is one person who you ought not to take anything from. She makes the garbage statement that the employees and staff won't be allowed to leave. Really? Even Atlantis own statement does not say that.
happyfly 2 years, 6 months ago
Hopefully, sometime soon, the rest of the business community in this country will realize what a colossal waste of time, energy, and money that all of these ridiculous government sanctions on business are - and push back on the one lunatic that is making them
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