Beware November… Let’s do something about it now!

rum shop barbados

“We need to drive an additional average of 170 visitors per day over the month to get back to the highs of the previous decade.”

November’s core should be the Barbados Food Wine and Rum Festival

Adrian Loveridge - tourism expert, hotel owner

Adrian Loveridge – tourism expert, hotel owner

2014 will mark the hosting of the fifth annual Barbados Food Wine and Rum Festival and I firmly believe that this event has enormous further potential, especially as it takes place during November which is traditionally one of our quietest months.

While I understand the challenging logistics of spreading the invited celebrity events over a longer period, there are many additional initiatives that the private sector tourism partners can put into place, which could prolong the benefits.

First I think the entire 30 days could be promoted as a ‘gastronomic’ month with our restaurants, at all levels, offering more affordable eating options.

Perhaps the more innovative car rental companies could smart partner with a selection of the eateries to provide an island-wide lunch ‘passport’, even including our attractions at a reduced entrance fee.

November provides every component to ensure the concept has the highest possibility of success. From the UK, excess seat capacity on the legacy carriers with Virgin and British Airways, plus scheduled charter seats from Manchester with Thomas Cook offering lead-in return fares from GBPounds 322.

Climate is also on our side from certain areas of the US and Canada.  Continue reading

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Why a restaurant worker’s selfie photo with Robert Van Persie was bad for Barbados

Robert-Van-Persie selfie with hotel worker

Photo controversy has a big message for Bajans: Remember what made Barbados the choice of the rich and famous – and how we all benefited from our image.

Frank Sinatra would have understood why The Cliff Restaurant suspended employee Kyson Forde for asking Manchester United striker Robert Van Persie to take a photo with him.

Back in 1967 BFP’s Auntie Moses had an encounter with the famous Rat Pack member (as told by Marcus. God, how I miss him)…

“The super rich and famous have always had their gates and guards, and I guess I don’t begrudge them a little privacy. Shona’s Auntie Moses tells a fabulous story about meeting Frank Sinatra when he ran into the kitchen where she was working. Auntie Moses and her friends hid Frankie in a walk-in cooler for a few minutes until his need passed. Then he talked with the staff for half an hour, had a beer and gave all the girls a big kiss before he left. He also sent autographed photos the next day. (Certainly a different profile of Sinatra’s character than one might think by reading some other accounts. Auntie Moses hasn’t washed that cheek since 1967!)”

… from BFP’s Rich and Not-So-Rich Brits Flock To Barbados Gated Communities

This island used to be the first choice for the rich and famous of the world. There were reasons for that – our pristine beaches, some upscale accommodations, and most important the Bajan ‘doan care who you are, everybody is welcome’ attitude. You are rich? Famous? Who cares? Never heard of you and even if I did, have a rum and a cutter.

Now everybody has a camera in their phone. It’s not much of a proper camera but everybody has one and feels obliged to record everything. Are we better for it as people and society? I don’t think so.

The rich and famous came here partially because Barbados offered as much privacy and anonymity as possible in a vacation destination. Within walls and upscale hotels, the rich and famous could relax and not worry that their every movement and word would be reported. (That went for the Royal Family too, although it didn’t work out all that well for Princess Margaret and her toyboy.)

Kyson Forde was suspended because he forgot that Mr. Van Persie was our guest – not only at The Cliff Restaurant, but on this island. Mr. Van Persie was good enough to stand for the photo, but he was probably thinking very unkind thoughts about The Cliff and his vacation in Barbados. It’s part of the Bajan deal with the rich and famous: we don’t make a big deal of our guests.

There are many qualities of our culture and business sense that we’ve lost over the years, and the ability to not see anything when appropriate is one of those lost Bajan qualities.

Barbados still has the qualities that attracted the rich and famous for the last 50 years – but we’re losing them. You know we are. I won’t list them all here but think about the changes to our environment and culture. Any Bajan knows what has changed so I won’t go into it further right now.

Congratulations to the management of The Cliff Restaurant for maintaining our standards, and in doing so protecting the reputation of our country. The mainstream media covered Kyson Forde’s suspension extensively, and that probably did far more to promote our tourism product to the rich and famous than anything else this year.

And a big welcome back to Kyson Forde after his suspension. Hopefully he has done some thinking about his job. If not, there are a hundred others who will apply for his position.

Further Reading

Waiter suspended for snapping pictures with Van Persie

Mirror UK: Robin Van Persie almost selfie costs Barbados waiter his job.

 

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Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Culture & Race Issues

Angry Bajan rants about corruption with taxpayers’ monies

kickback-bribes

No contractor General, No Public Prosecutor, No Freedom Of Information, No Integrity or  Transparency Legislation. Below are some recent suspicious happening in Barbados involving taxpayers monies.

  • Carsicot. ( Warwick Franklin )
  • St Joseph Hospital  ( Branford Taitt )
  • 3S Highway Project. ( Glyne Clarke )
  • Greenland (  Liz Thompson )
  • QEH $18M Power Plant ( Everson Elcock)
  • GEMS ( Rodney Wilkinson )
  • Veco Dodds ( Dale Marshall)
  • Cahill Waste To Energy Plant ( Denis Lowe/Chris Sinckler/ Darcy Boyce )
  • Sanitation Workshop ( Denis Lowe )
  • NHC $150 Yearly Lease to Coverley  ( Michael Lashley )
  • CLICO Money Laundering ( David Thompson Associates, Garth Patterson, Freundel Stuart, Leslie Haynes, Chris Sinckler )

The above clearly shows the two political parties are comprised of deceitful spin doctors who use innuendos and theatrical distractions to protect each other which amuses the duncy Bajans.

Is the DPP asleep?

Ministry of Agriculture: David Estwick driving a Q5
Ministry of Environment: Denis Lowe driving a X5
Ministry of Transport: Michael Lashley driving a X5

Imagine workers from the above ministries gone home to help stabilize the country’s finances. Where is the empathy? The DLP is truly behaving like they no longer interested in politics after their term expire my 78 year old granny thinks.

Angry Bajan

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Filed under Barbados, Consumer Issues, Corruption, Political Corruption, Politics & Corruption

Invader’s Bay a politicians’ debacle of questionable actions and hidden information

afra raymond CMMB

by Afra Raymond

After a flurry of attempted explanations from the Minister of Planning & Sustainable Development, Dr. Bhoe Tewarie, as to the real meaning of the High Court’s 14 July ruling on the Invader’s Bay matter, the State has now appealed that ruling and applied for expedited hearing of the matter while having the judgment stayed.

What that means is that the State is asking the Court to agree an extension of the Stay of Execution until the appeal is decided, so that the requested information could be withheld while the case is being heard.  Presumably, the State has asked for a speedy hearing so as to avoid any impression of them encouraging needless delay in this matter of high public concern.

This article will focus on the three critical findings in the judgment.

  • Legal Professional Privilege
  • Waiver of Privilege
  • The Public Interest Test

I will be examining Dr. Tewarie’s statement to Parliament on Friday 18 July, alongside the facts and the actual High Court ruling…

Read the entire article at Afra Raymond’s blog: Reality Check

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Filed under Consumer Issues, Corruption, Political Corruption, Politics & Corruption, Trinidad and Tobago

Toothless Caribbean Court of Justice in chaos. Mounting embarrassment over unending incidents.

Justice Delayed Barbados

“Perhaps most damning is the account from the dismissed acting registrar of the Court, Jamaican Dr Leighton Jackson, who was escorted out of the Court’s Headquarters in May.” 

Ask anyone on the B’town streets and you’ll find that few Bajans realise that the vaunted Caribbean Court of Justice carries no actual power or authority even in Barbados – one of the few countries to sign on with the CCJ. Compliance with Caribbean Court of Justice decisions, you see, is still voluntary.

That’s not what has the CCJ in chaos though – it’s a series of recent incidents that some say threatens the court’s continuance.

News 7 in Belize put forth an excellent summary, but the news articles just keep coming including corrupt conduct by a Justice…

Check out the following:

Trinidad Express: CCJ faces internal battle

Stabroek News: CCJ judge gets $$ to hire driver

Stabroek News: CCJ problems sadden former Chief Justice

Jamaica Gleaner: Former CCJ Employee Says Jamaica should be cautious with Court

Administrative Disquiet at CCJ

from 7NewsBelize.com

The Caribbean Court of Justice is the highest Court in Belize, Barbados and Guyana but right now the court is under pressure at its headquarters in Trinidad. News reports from Port of Spain say that the court is facing internal legal battles resulting from a series of dismissals, resignations and suspensions of senior managers. The Court says it is restructuring after 10 years, but half of the 72 employees have joined a union to lodge grievances against the court – mainly about a change in the salary payment system.

On top of that, the court’s senior managers have hired an attorney who is preparing to file suit against the court according to the Trinidad Sunday Express.

Perhaps most damning is the account from the dismissed acting registrar of the Court, Jamaican Dr Leighton Jackson, who was escorted out of the Court’s Headquarters in May.  Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Crime & Law

Merger of US Airways and American Airlines provides one-hundred million potential Barbados visitors. Let’s get to it!

“Since the merger of US Airways and American Airlines the combined number of loyalty members now exceeds 100 million.

Just think if we were able to entice only a tiny percentage of those to our shores!”

Adrian Loveridge - tourism expert, hotel owner

Adrian Loveridge – tourism expert, hotel owner

While still a month away, September presents one of the most challenging times of the year from a tourism perspective, especially from our second largest market, the United States. With three flights daily – two from Miami and one from New York – unless the scheduled aircraft type is changed that amounts to a total seat capacity of 16,680 in and out for the entire 30 days.

September 2013 recorded the second lowest US long stay visitor arrivals (6,198) for the last eight years, with only 2012 performing worse. Even if you factor in those travelling who are not counted in the landed passenger statistics, you start to get an idea of the problem.

Clearly this massive over-capacity or under-utilisation is not good, either for the airlines or destination, as there is no profit in an empty seat or vacant room.

Is there anything ‘we’ can do?

For many years I have tried to advocate the opportunities that frequent flyer programmes offer. From 7th September until 14th November American Airlines lower their mileage requirement to 25,000 for a return economy ticket from almost any city they service in Continental North America to Barbados.

Of particular interest due to excellent connection times, are cities like Houston and Chicago where published round trip normal fares to Barbados would be at least US$789 and $673 respectively.

Using miles only the add-on taxes are payable which amount to less than US$60 return.

This presents tremendous marketing potential for us to drive additional visitors as we then only have to compete on a ground level basis and with our incredible range of accommodation offerings, this should not be difficult. Continue reading

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Filed under Aviation, Barbados, Barbados Tourism

Regarding the Silver Point Hotel

To the person who left us the information about the Silver Point Hotel…

Sure. Send us everything. You know us… we’ll publish the story.

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