Barbados’ South coast hotels are in need of a serious upgrade.
That is the view of managing director of developers Blue Tourism Inc Phillip Tempro, who believes the island’s hotels on the south coast need to be on the same level of those on the west coast if they expect to continue to attract tourists.
While Blue Tourism Inc is responsible for the redevelopment of the Blue Horizon Hotel in Rockley, Christ Church, which is expected to be completed by 2021, it has also had a hand in west coast projects such as Port St Charles, Port Ferdinand and St Peter’s Bay Resort.
Tempro said with other islands opening major hotel chains, hotels on Barbados’ South coast had to be improved.
He also noted that Prime Minister Mia Mottley had set a goal of 5000 additional rooms in the next five years.
“One of the things that we lack in the season is we can’t get more business class seats.
“By increasing and bringing the standard of the south coast product up, we are going to be able to get more airlift, because not only are we going to get the business class, we are going to get the guys that want to be in Barbados and that is where these projects become critical,” Tempro said.
“So for us, our focus is not just building the west [coast], but let’s build some other product so that we can support both coasts…These projects and the regeneration of the south coast is what is going to make that happen.Tourism is our business. We don’t have another business.”
Meanwhile, architect and consultant of Elements Ltd, Douglas Luke, who is also involved in the Blue Horizons project, said
Barbados was competing for tourists with not only countries in the region but also with Florida, Miami. Mexico and Columbia.
He said while Grenada had recently opened “four or five big hotels”, Barbados was falling behind.
“Both St Lucia and Grenada have jumped in front of us…Barbados is under serious competition from other islands,” Luke said.
“From what I understand from all the experts in the hotel industry both locally and regionally, Barbados has very tired product.
“The south coast is at the epiphany of tired and this is all meant to start that process of upgrading the south coast and heralding it back to being one of the premier spots, not only in Barbados, but in the Caribbean,” he said.