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Moxey optimistic about Grand Lucayan sale

Minister for Grand Bahama Ginger Moxey said she is optimistic that the Davis administration will be able to sell the Grand Lucayan hotel.

Moxey’s comments come following the government’s decision to terminate the purchase agreement with Royal Caribbean earlier this month.

“I do think so,” she told reporters when asked about the matter outside Cabinet. 

“I wouldn’t say we’re back at square one because there were others who were interested in purchasing.

“It just so happened that that deal caused them to not be able to move forward.

“And so I think we’re at a good place and things should be moving forward from this point on.”

The Minnis administration purchased the resort from Hong Kong conglomerate Hutchison Whampoa in August 2018 for $65 million in a controversial move.

Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines and the ITM Group, via a joint venture called Bahamas Port Investments ltd., signed the agreement to purchase the Grand Lucayan for $50 million in March 2020.

The agreement signed by RCL called for a $300 million investment into the hotel property to “refurbish, renovate and reconstruct 500 rooms in phase one; and another 500 rooms along with 500 villas in phase two”.

The plan also included a casino; a water park; a restaurant and retail center, and Holistica – another joint venture between RCI and ITM Group.

The redevelopment of the property was set to start this year but the COVID-19 pandemic delayed and changed the terms of the agreement.

However, the Davis administration, announced recently that it canceled the sale, with Minister of Tourism, Investments and Aviation Chester Cooper saying it was not in the best interest of Bahamians.

Cooper had previously called the deal “egregiously bad”.

Royal Caribbean has publicly stated that it is still interested in purchasing the resort on Grand Bahama.

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Rachel Scott

Rachel joined The Nassau Guardian in January 2019. Rachel covers national issues. Education: University of Virginia in Charlottesville, BA in Foreign Affairs and Spanish

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