Atlantis to welcome first guests on July 7

Atlantis resort is preparing to host its first guests on the property since it closed its doors on May 25, days after Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis announced a public state of emergency and closed the country’s borders.

The resort is preparing to welcome its first guests on July 7, the resort’s President and Managing Director Audrey Oswell said in a letter to employees yesterday.

“Our reopening will be in phases. Phase one begins July 7, 2020 when we welcome our first guests back to The Royal. In phase one, Royal Bath, Mayan Temple, Power Tower, Zero Entry and Splashers will open,” the letter stated.

“All beaches will open and Dolphin Cay will open. The main casino, spa and Marina Village will open. Some but not all of our restaurants and lounges will open.”

Guardian Business did not receive an immediate response from Atlantis officials when contacted yesterday regarding how many guests are expected and how many employees would be returning to work at the property.

Thousands of Atlantis staff were laid off in March when the state of emergency order was made.

The resort is the largest private employer in the country.

Oswell had initially indicated in May that the resort’s phased reopening would begin this month on a limited scale, starting with the reopening of the Royal Towers and the re-engagement of some employees.

In yesterday’s letter, Oswell said employees who are not a part of the phase one reopening will remain furloughed until the property transitions to the next phase.

“Phase two of our reopening plan will be contingent upon business volumes. If you are called back to work as a part of phase one reopening, you will be notified by human resources,” the letter noted.

“If you do not receive a letter or call directly from human resources, you should not report to work and regrettably you will continue with your furlough. We will call you back at the earliest possible time.”

Oswell noted that employees who return to work, whether during phase one or at a later phase, will notice changes to prevent the spread of the deadly and contagious novel coronavirus.

“The safety of all who pass through our doors is of utmost importance to us. Accordingly, many new safety measures and protocols have been put in place. From a guest and team member experience, we have implemented a comprehensive approach which supports our Atlantis Clean & Safe Promise. We have enhanced our standards and will take extra measures to keep our environment safe and clean,” she said in the letter.

Major resorts throughout the country have announced plans to resume operations on or before July 1, when the government has said it will open the country’s borders to international commercial flights.

The resumption of tourism activity over the short term is considered crucial to helping the country rebuild economically since the local onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, which caused a flatlining of tourist arrivals.

Oswell told employees yesterday that the company is making every effort to bring tourism back to previous levels, so that many of them can return to work. She further noted that she is confident business at the resort will rebound “and we will emerge stronger than ever”.

“When we started down this path back in March, I reminded you that this too shall pass,” she said.

“Hopefully we have weathered the worse (sic) of this storm and will be looking at brighter skies going forward.”

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Paige McCartney

Paige joined The Nassau Guardian in 2010 as a television news reporter and anchor. She has covered countless political and social events that have impacted the lives of Bahamians and changed the trajectory of The Bahamas. Paige started working as a business reporter in August 2016. Education: Palm Beach Atlantic University in 2006 with a BA in Radio and Television News

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