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The former Buccament Bay Resort.
The former Buccament Bay Resort.

Sandals Resort International is paying about US$17.5 million (about EC$47 million) for the former Buccament Bay Resort as well as additional land in the area, including those that the state is taking from farmers and selling to the resort.

This is according to information revealed by Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves on NBC Radio on Wednesday.

“… Sandals has already sent their 10%; they’ve already sent the 10% — US$1.75 million; I think the number is. They have sent that already; that’s already in the accounts of the government,” Gonsalves said.

The government has acquired the resort, which has been closed since December 2016 amidst financial problems, and will be selling it to Sandals.

The government and Sandals last month signed a deal for the sale of the resort, which has been the subject of legal proceedings since it was closed.

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Several attempts to woo investors to the project ended in failure.

The prime minister said that his government will ask Parliament during today’s meeting to approve EC$36 million “for the acquisition and purchase of lands  — the 40 acre footprint for Sandals, plus other land which we had acquired close to it — adjacent to it”.

He said the efforts of his government “to get that land together, for us to acquire and also now to buy additional land is just absolutely incredible work”.

The Prime Minister said that his government is paying “slightly less” for the resort, exclusive of the additional lands, than the liquidators was selling to the Kelly Glass group for.

Vincentians Barry Ferdinand and Kelly Glass along with Scotsman Jonathan Mills had formed a group and were in advanced talks with KPMG, the liquidators, and the government for acquisition of the failed resort before the negotiations collapsed late last year.

Gonsalves said that the section of the resort that was formerly owned by Harlequin had a footprint of about 27 acres of land.

“Sandals say we need a footprint of 40 acres because they’re doing a big water theme park for the the Beaches, for that particular brand — the family brand.

“We’ll pay a price for that, somewhat less than what they were selling to the Kelly Glass group for because when that deal broke down we’re the only show in town. Matters were dragging on,” the prime minister said.

He said that his government has also negotiated “a very good price” with the owners of the 51 cabanas and the apartments in the tower block at the resort.

He also noted that a part of the resort was on lands owned by Bernard Punnett.

“There was piece of the property with Harlequin was Bernard land and they were working out the arrangements. But the footprint for the 40 acres needs a little bit more there,” Gonsalves said, adding, “So we have agreed to about six acres from Bernard Punnett…”

19 replies on “Sandals to pay US$17m for Buccament resort”

  1. I am hoping that the Government is gonna do the right thing and pay the previous citizens (Hard working staff) who the BUCCAMENT Bay resort still owes .I am one of them and I need my money thousands of dollars is being owed to the previous staff under Dave Ames ownership and Gaileen Crick’s Management.I am hoping that the Prime Minister who claims to have love for his citizen gonna do the right thing .

  2. Fidus Achates says:

    All selling out under this regime. What a sin thing. Will VINCENTIANS ever know the truth about what the minister of everything says or do????

  3. Seems like the Government is buying the resort and the additional lands at a much higher price overall than it is selling back to Sandals. Seems on the face like it is a give away to me. On the other hand Mr. Ralph is saying that the workers who are still owed wages and severance by Harlequin (the former resort) are not covered by the local labor laws to recoup their wages because of some technicality in Harlequin business structure. The workers provide their labor directly to Harlequin resort and should be compensated under the present deal and in light of the existing labor laws. It’s sad that SVG has such a bigoted, arrogant, white slave driver PM that mercilessly oppresses black people in SVG . What kind of leader tells the people that he does not give a rats ass about them and that they cannot get their wages because the leader is such an arrogant cunt? What kind of people that would allow themselves and their children to continue to be oppressed by such delusional, inhumane and arrogant idiot?

  4. Nathan Jolly Green says:

    I just hope that the site is not flooded again because Sandals have left themselves open now knowing the resort is built in a flood plain to being sued. If more people die they will be held fully responsible. So I will continue from time to time reminding tourists of the risks.

  5. Nathan Jolly Green says:

    After the government changed the rules and acquired the resort and more farmland and did a deal with Punnet, and was able to sell the project unencumbered, did they offer it on the open market? If they did not, how do they know that $17 million was the best price achievable? Remember this was not the same deal offered to the Kelly consortium; this was a new deal. It was never available unencumbered before with all sections available from one seller. To make that worse here you have a unique and revised deal, a great new deal, and they sell it for less than Kelly’s group offered with all its problems.

    Can anyone say the property was undersold and not offered on the open market to obtain the best value for the creditors? If I remember Harlequin valued it at $250 million?

    I advise everyone who was owed money to get together and take joint legal advice, something smells.

    Because if it was worth more on the open market and was sold for more, there may have been money for ex-employees.

    What worries me is that Ralph Gonsalves and his boy Camillo, and Butch Stewart and his boy Adam, got together in Florida USA, and struck a deal which they all agreed on. This deal should have been negotiated in SVG and should have been fully transparent, with other government ministers and attorneys present. This deal should not have been conducted like a family affair.

    This reminds me of the previous deal, Ralph Gonsalves and his wife, going to Cuba and doing a transaction in a restaurant, a family affair, with a client who wanted to invest into a private lounge at Argyle airport.

    What then happened with the Cuban deal, with the clients African bank involved is another story which if I write no one will publish.

  6. Why couldn’t one million of that money be put aside to pay those workers and if not I hope they and family know what they can do with a X.

  7. Something is seriously wrong with that deal
    Only US $17.5 million, this needs to be investigated.

  8. We must ensure that Vincentian, who are not guests or residents of the resort, continue to have full access to the entire beach. We must not allow Sandalls or any other operator ‘own’ the beach which belongs to the public. They have done this in Jamaica and other islands and the government just gives in to them. Please, please, don’t let this happen in SVG otherwise it will be the thin end of the wedge.

  9. I was wondering when one of you former worker would come forward and speak taught the comrade and son had all you frightened you should know some more of your former co workers encouraged them to speak out and say what’s going on with them and like fedup say use your X WISELY

  10. Let’s support this development. The potential benefits from its success could go a long way towards promoting the tourism sector in SVG. We must make sacrifices today to gain benefits in the future. As my grandmother used to say: “Sometimes you have to stoop to conquer.”

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