Baha Mar providing staff compensation for another 90 days

Baha Mar has assured its staff members that the mega-resort will continue to “care for each and every one” of them despite its announcement that its reopening will be delayed further in order to preserve the safety of its associates, community and guests.

“To that end, we are once again providing for you up to an additional 90 days, 30 percent of base compensation as an ex gratia payment, in addition to any payments being offered by the government,” Baha Mar President Graeme Davis said in a letter to associates yesterday.

 “Furthermore, we will continue to pay the premiums necessary to maintain health insurance, life and accidental death and dismemberment insurance coverage.”

While the Ministry of Tourism has announced October 15 as the opening day of all major hotels, Graeme Davis said in the letter that the reopening of the property by that time is not achievable under current circumstances.

Baha Mar indicated in June that although tourism would resume on July 1, it would push its reopening to October.

Davis said resort executives thought at the time that the spread of COVID-19 would have been contained by then.

“There are no perfect decisions in our current climate, but there are ones that allow us to put the well-being of those we care about first. This is why I am announcing that the reopening of Baha Mar will be delayed further in order to preserve the safety of our associates, community and guests. While this is a great disappointment to us all, it is a choice we make with a heavy heart after sober assessment of the current state of COVID-19 cases here in The Bahamas and in our key US markets,” he said in the letter released yesterday.

“In June it was our goal to reopen in October. That goal is not achievable under the current circumstances. Our expectation was that the virus would have been controlled by this point, which unfortunately is not the case. Please be assured that it is our desire and intent to open the resort as soon as it can be done safely and in a way that allows our guests and associates to do so with the peace of mind we all yearn for in this tumultuous time.”

Davis said he would share another update on ongoing efforts and a possible opening date in October.

In June, Baha Mar announced that it was making about 20 percent of its staff redundant.

Last month, in an interview with business luxury lifestyle brand CSQ, Davis said Baha Mar would continue to pay full benefits and 30 percent of salaries for remaining full-time staff for another 90 days in order to provide as much financial assistance during this time.

Davis acknowledged to staff that executives understand that the kind of uncertainty surrounding the reopening of the property is difficult to live with.

Minister of Tourism and Aviation Dionisio D’Aguilar announced October 15, 2020 as the reopening date for hotels on all islands to resume full operations and the full use of beaches.

On November 1, it is expected that attractions, tours and excursions will resume.

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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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