Freeport

Royal Caribbean CEO hints at future plans for recent Freeport, Bahamas resort purchase

In:
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27May2019

Royal Caribbean International CEO Michael Bayley made comments recently that hint at what the cruise line has planned for its recent purchase of the Grand Lucaya resort in Freeport, Bahamas.

In March 2019, Royal Caribbean signed a letter of intent with the government of The Bahamas for the purchase of the Grand Lucayan resort and redevelopment of the Freeport Harbor.

Tribune 242 reports Michael Bayley spoke to members of the Bahamian press at an opening ceremony for Perfect Day at CocoCay, "telling members of the press his company was positioning itself to spearhead a multi-million dollar, multi-phased project on par with CocoCay in Freeport if negotiations with the government are successful."

Mr. Bailey went on to say, “Just the fact that we are going to redevelop those hotels and beach, that whole area, it is going to be in the hundreds and hundreds of millions of dollars. The amount of work that will be underway to regenerate that destination, it is going to be a few years, hundreds of millions of dollars, massive project work, and I think the economic impact is going to huge.”

State Minister for Grand Bahama Kwasi Thompson said the joint venture between RCI and its investment partner, the ITM Group, will not only combine the redevelopment of the Freeport Harbor as a cruise port of choice but will also transform the Grand Lucayan resort into a theme park, featuring water-based family entertainment, with dining, gaming and entertainment options and five-star hotel accommodations.

The development will take place over a 24-month period, with $65 million of the purchase price for the Grand Lucayan Resort.

Mr. Bayley did note RCI’s full project specs could not be revealed publicly until a finished deal is worked out between the two sides, and there is another 30-40 days of negotiations remaining.

Royal Caribbean purchases resort in Grand Bahama for development project

In:
Category: 
28Mar2019

Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. and ITM Group have signed a letter of intent with the government of The Bahamas for the purchase of the Grand Lucayan resort and redevelopment of the Freeport Harbor.

Tribune242 reports the letter of intent was signed and an initial $195 million investment. The development will take place over a 24-month period, with $65 million of the purchase price for the Grand Lucayan Resort.

The government expects an additional two million cruise passengers will be brought annually to Grand Bahama island. Once complete, a theme park and five-star hotel will be part of the redevelopment effort.

The Grand Lucayan suffered significant damage more than two-and-a-half years ago following Hurricane Matthew, which forced the closure of two-thirds of the property.

Royal Caribbean working on plans for port in Freeport, Grand Bahama

In:
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14Feb2019

It looks like Royal Caribbean is exploring the possibility of developing a cruise port in Freeport, Grand Bahama.

Photo by DandA

Tribune Business quoted Bahamas Minister of Tourism Dionisio D’Aguilar, who indicated Royal Caribbean in partnership with Mexican port developer, ITM Group, is looking to acquire the Grand Lucayan and develop a proposed water-based, adventure-type theme park at both the resort and Freeport Harbour.

It looks like ITM Group and Royal Caribbean are looking to develop a new port in Freeport that can handle four new cruise ship berths in Freeport Harbour, which would double the port's current capacity.  The proposal has generated some concerns that the new port would come at the expense of cruise ship visits to Nassau.

D’Aguilar dismissed these concerns by stating, “Nassau will always stand on its own.”

Tribune Business quoted D’Aguilar, “I disagree with the view that, because Royal Caribbean and Carnival are building ports in Freeport, that will have a negative impact on Nassau. There are 90 ships in construction, and demand is growing significantly for cruise vacations."

Over 800,000 passengers to visit Bahamas thanks to Royal Caribbean in 2011

In:
11Jun2010

Royal Caribbean Vice-President of government relations for the Caribbean and Latin America, Michael Ronan, told Bahemian newspaper The Tribune, that in 2011 Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines will "be back up over 800,000 passengers" brought to the Bahamas.  That figure is over 100,000 more than in 2010, thanks in part to the anticipated delivery of Allure of the Seas.

These figures include stops in Nassau, Freeport and its Bahamian private islands.  The news comes after a report that Oasis of the Seas was rumored to be ending stops in Nassau, but Ronan said the change was merely due to a difference in Western and Eastern Caribbean itineraries, where Oasis of the Seas only stops in Nassau on it's eastern Caribbean trips.  Ronan went on to explain that once Allure of the Seas became operational, it would start rotating Nassau calls with the Oasis of the Seas on a schedule that would be maintained through Spring 2012, with one of the ships stopping in Nassau opposite the other.

"With the Oasis vessels, we are significantly increasing the number of passengers that are going to be coming," Mr Ronan told Tribune Business. "We will be back up over 800,000 passengers in 2011. This year, I think we will be in the 700,000 in change, because we're still waiting for the arrival of the Allure, which will put us with a full year of Oasis class ships in Nassau every week. Last year, 2009, we bottomed out."

For the people of the Bahamas, the more cruisers that stop by, the better for the local economy.  For cruisers, a better economy in the Bahamas typically means less crime and better upkeep of the city (that's a generalization).