The worsening sewage mess along this island’s south coast has not affected next week’s scheduled opening of the Sandals Royal in Maxwell, Christ Church. Furthermore, the group’s existing Sandals Resort property at St Lawrence Gap has not suffered any fallout, says local Public Relations Manager David Hinds.
Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of the Sandals Foundation Christmas toy drive at the Christ Church Girls School, Hinds also revealed that bookings remained quite steady, as officials eagerly anticipate the December 20 launch of the newest addition to the luxury hotel group.
“Everything is on schedule. . . and we are just adding some final finishing touches now before we open on Wednesday,” he said.
He also said that the occupancy levels for the existing property were “in the high 90s” and with the spill off from that property, Sandals Royal was set to open “at around 82 per cent”.
Hinds also said both hotels were expected to be “at full capacity” by January.
His comments come amid feverish attempts by the authorities to contain what are now almost daily breaches in the south coast sewerage system.
As a result, several businesses have been forced to close their doors, with the stench proving unbearable for customers and employees alike.
Residents and visitors to the island have also complained about the foul stench that has overtaken sections of Hastings and Worthing in Christ Church, amid rising concerns about the health and environmental implications of the sewage mess.
With the situation as it stands, Hinds said Sandals was prepared to play its part in finding a permanent solution.
“We are concerned as members of the Christ Church community. Fortunately the problem has not reached up by us as yet and for the most part we haven’t had that issue to deal with . . . [but] we continue to pay keen interest in the developments and we sympathize with the hotels, businesses and residences in the area and we are willing and ready to play our part,” he said, adding that “the environment is key part of what Sandals stands for, so we are open to suggestions as to how we can assist the other businesses and residences in the area.
“If a solution comes about and we can be some help, we are more than willing to do so. I know that there is a town hall meeting which is supposed be scheduled very soon and once we are invited and we are present, we would listen out for anyway that our foundation or company can help out our friends in the area,” he added.