Thursday 18 July, 2019

Hilton Barbados Resort up for sale

The Hilton Barbados Resort.

The Hilton Barbados Resort.

The Government of Barbados intends to put the Hilton hotel up for sale.

This was announced in Parliament this evening by Finance Minister Christopher Sinckler during his presentation of the 2017 Budgetary proposals.

He indicated that with Government in recent times venturing into a private-public partnership with the EXIM Bank of China on the Wyndham Sam Lord’s Castle, it was time to divest the Hilton property, which he said has brought “great acclaim to itself and Barbados as a whole.”

The Wyndham Sam Lord’s Castle project is valued at some US$250 million and is expected to add “tremendous value” to the domestic hotel stock and offerings, said Sinckler.

“With this in mind, Government believes that, in keeping with its policy to limit the number of hotel properties it holds within its asset portfolio, that now would be a good time to divest itself of the Hilton while preparing to welcome the Wyndham Sam Lord’s Castle into the fold,” he announced.

The original Hilton Hotel was first opened in November 1966. It was demolished in 1999 to clear the way for an expanded, upgraded property and reopened in 2005.

The Government of Barbados is the majority shareholder of Needham’s Point Holdings Ltd, the holding company of the Hilton Barbados Resort.

The Finance Minister said the Government, through the Barbados Tourism Investment Inc. and the Ministry of Tourism and International Transport, will be receiving, analysing and recommending bids to the Cabinet for the sale of the property which, on recent valuations, is estimated to be worth just under US$100 million.

“If a successful bid is accepted, Government is expecting to receive no less than BDS$100 million as the net proceeds from the sale, taking into account the liquidation of existing debt liabilities attached to the property. Provision for these proceeds have already been taken account of in the 2017-2018 Estimates of Revenue,” said Sinckler.

He added, “Additionally government is expecting a boost to the country’s foreign exchange reserves of at least $100 million this year from the sale, once all paperwork can be finalised by the parties.”

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