Thursday 14 November, 2019

Tourism Minister wants staggered upgrades across Elegant chain if sold

(FILE)

(FILE)

Renovate one hotel at a time.

This is the hope and advice of Barbados Tourism Minister Kerrie Symmonds to hotel giant Marriott International Inc. if it acquires the local Elegant Hotels Group. Though welcoming the investment and possible advantages, the Minister said this detail may seem small, but it cannot be overlooked or assumed. 

In the press release issued by Marriott International Inc. yesterday, October 18, 2019, if their offer goes through they clearly stated that they will make some changes to the current hotel plants. 

It stated:

'Following the acquisition, Marriott intends to carry out renovations to the hotels in the Elegant portfolio. Upon completion of the planned property renovations, Marriott intends to operate all the Elegant hotels as all-inclusive resorts under one or more of Marriott’s collection brands.'

In response, the Minister told Loop News:

"With regard to the proposed renovations, please note that I am already proposing that renovations will be staggered so that we will not be expecting to have massive hotel closures across the island at one time."

This is now the Winter season, and in Barbados, most hotels see close to full occupancy numbers if they are not completely booked.

The Minister's recommendation comes after yesterday's announcement about Marriott's BBD $262 million-dollar offer for the seven hotels and beachfront restaurant in the Elegant Hotels Group portfolio. Six of the seven hotel properties are all-inclusive. A fact that made the Group more appealing to the global brand.

President and Chief Executive Officer, Marriott International, Arne Sorenson said in the release, “There is a strong and growing consumer demand for premium and luxury properties in the all-inclusive category.

“The addition of the Elegant portfolio will help us further jump start our expansion in the all-inclusive space, while providing more choices on the breathtaking island of Barbados for our 133 million Marriott Bonvoy members.”

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