Executive Vice-President of the Barbados Hotel and Tourism Association, Sue Springer has declared that Sandals Resort Barbados has been reaping big dividends for the island’s bread and butter industry.
Springer used the occasion of Sandals’ first staff award ceremony on the beach of its St Lawrence Gap resort to credit the Caribbean tourist accommodation giant for being in the forefront of moving the island’s sector out of a slump and into a promising future.
Sandals added Barbados to its Caribbean-wide listing of all-inclusive resorts on January 28, 2015, and celebrated its first year here with the beginning of annual awards for its staff, now totaling 270 persons.
“Thank you very much Sandals for allowing us to be increasing in numbers. And we also have seen the increases in the first quarter of this year, which all bodes well, hopefully, for the rest of the year,” said Springer as she delivered the feature address at last night’s awards ceremony.
“Over the past seven years we have seen recession, depression.
“Rough economic times are what we have faced. We have seen hotels closed, experienced reduced airlift … and we have been left one way or another feeling we just wish this period would past.”
She said that in 2015 the island’s fortunes, however, started to turn.
“Maybe it was because Sandals opened, but last year we began to see a revival, as we saw additional arrivals, new hotels coming on stream, refurbishment of hotels and new cruise ships visiting as well.”