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Failure to get Lucayan deal over the line not unexpected

Grand Lucayan

Grand Lucayan

By YOURI KEMP

Tribune Business Reporter

ykemp@tribunemedia.net

A lack of “commitment” to complete by Royal Caribbean Cruise Line  for the purchase of the Grand Lucayan Hotel was behind  government’s decision to pull the plug on the deal and one Freeport businessman agrees.

The government says it is now looking to move forward with other investors they feel have “significant resources” that are aligned with the government’s vision for Grand Bahama.

James Rolle, Dolly Madison’s general manager, told Tribune Business yesterday that he “expected” the Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines (RCCL) deal for the Grand Lucayan to fall through after it was left lingering for the past 24 months.

The deal was first announced as “completed” by the former Minister of Tourism Dionisio D’Aguilar in late 2019, however it was found that it was not actually completed as the keys for the property had not officially changed hands. RCCL then began asking for additional concessions from the Grand Bahama Port Authority as a condition for them to take full ownership of the property.

Mr Rolle added: “Without having an information as to what the tenet of that Memorandum of Understanding between RCCL and the government was, we don’t know what was agreed between the parties or what RCCL had indicated they would do.

“Sitting on this side of the table in The Bahamas you really would have to see something that was going to show some beneficial effect for Grand Bahama in particular. At least the government would have to see that it was not just a give away, so I really don’t know what the tenet of that MoU was, but if the government is saying that there wasn’t any commitment then obviously RCCL didn’t indicate that they were prepared to do certain things that the government thought that they should have committed to.”

Brent Collins, chief executive of Freeport-based Power Equipment, who has existing contracts with the Grand Lucayan for several generators, said: “This sucks man. We were looking forward to that tourism at least because I know the hotel right now is putting in their all to get everything functional to make sure the place has generators, air conditioners and food equipment in place now.

“We’ve been doing the generator work up there, mostly the engineering department we work with the general manager they have there too, but other than that our company is doing okay and hopefully going into next year we can be in a much better position financially. But this is disappointing to hear.”

Comments

Maximilianotto 7 months, 3 weeks ago

The New Day government will announce the deal for the next days or months of their tenure. Nobody serious will buy this teardown. Next $100 m will go down the drain. The IMF will end this Desaster in 2022.

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tribanon 7 months, 3 weeks ago

Minnis buying the Lucayan Hotel property was never about it eventually becoming an economically viable resort in the hands of the right owner. Minnis bought it as a vessel to facilitate corruption on a massive scale that greatly benefitted Hutchison Whampoa, Royal Caribbean, and the owners of the Grand Bahama Port Authority. And of course Minnis, D'Aguilar and Scott, among others, made out like bandits for the role they played in seeing to it that the Bahamian people got royally fleeced to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars.

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