The state-owned building in Kingstown, where Cobblestone Inn is located. (IWN photo)

The government has begun steps to issue Ann Joshua a new five-year lease of the state-owned historic building in which the iconic hotel in has been operating for over three decades.

On July 9, a lawyer for Properties Ltd., the state-owned firm responsible for management of the building, wrote to Joshua giving her until Sept. 30 to leave the premises.

The letter gave no reasons for the decision.

However, Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves, who is Joshua’s first cousin and has ministerial responsibilities for , later said separately that it was in the interest of transparency.

Gonsalves claimed that Joshua had been granted the lease without an open and transparent bidding process.

Observers have said this is not the case, although Gonsalves said then Prime Minister, , had decided to which of the two entities that had bid for occupancy that the lease was to be awarded

Cobblestone Inn was on Saturday still operating in the building and iWitness News understands that Joshua has signed a five-year lease in which she would continue to pay EC$24,000 a month in rent.

iWitness News understands that the signatures of two other agents of the government are needed before the lease become legally binding.

Cobblestone Inn has been operating at the venue on a month-to-month rental basis after its last lease expired a few years ago.

Joshua had earlier asked National Properties to reduce the lease, citing operation cost and low occupancy — amidst decreasing tourist arrivals to St. Vincent and the .

Gonsalves said on radio on Friday that he knows there were negotiations between National Properties and “my dear friend and cousin Ann Joshua”.

He, however, said the of National Properties had not informed him about the outcome of the discussions.

5 replies on “Cobblestone Inn owner to receive new lease”

  1. Liar! Nothing moves in SVG unless Papa says so. I know that my Face book id was probably blocked because I have often shown what gave birth to ISIS and ISIL. It all happened when Iran was invaded and Sadam was killed and his people were not given a chance to be involved in the new regime. Today America is also seeing something similar with Trump trying to divide the nation. A country divided cannot stand and if this continues then America can and may fall. SVG is not far behind based on the above.

  2. $24,000 a month is way too much but I guess when Argyle airport is open for business Ms. Joshua’s venture will be fully occupied 12 months of the year and she will be able to charge double the current rate making her a millionaire in no time.

    Right?

    1. David it was the lies and the failure to complete a working airport in the three years promised instead of now ten years and still not open that has compounded the problems for Buccament resort and helped put them out of business.

      Lying to to the citizens is bad enough but lying to investors stops other investors from coming to SVG.

      Telling lies by anyone in authority will eventually bring about tragic results and we are experiencing that right now in SVG.

  3. I doubt any Vincentian asked for the tender documents, no one would want to be blacked by society for taking part in the spite and malice that was being offered to Ann.

    But 5 years is a short term lease and when that is up if the ULP are still in power she will be back in the same position. I just hope she gets honestly decent terms and doesn’t sign anything she will regret.

    1. No, Peter, the fact is there were no other bidders. I can’t see how she could recoup the big monthly rent unless the hotel doubles as a quickie love nest for aging sugar daddies and their teenage sweethearts.

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