Monthly Archives: September 2010

Tourism Matters – Non-stop Dallas to Barbados

Think beyond Dallas… to Arkansas and Wichita Falls

by Adrian Loveridge, small hotel owner.

The new non-stop direct service from Dallas to Barbados, slated to start on the 16th December this year offers tremendous growth potential for our tourism industry. Not only will it tempt the estimated 6.5 million people that live in the greater Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington area, the fourth largest metropolitan population in the United States, but it offers some incredible connecting city opportunities.

As the DFW airport website reminds us, no major city in the Continental United States is more than four flying hours from Dallas, so an overall in-the-air traveling time of less than ten hours will make all these cities accessible to Barbados. California which boasts a population over 36 million people, will then be able to reach us within a comfortable twelve hours, without the need to transit Miami.

American Airlines Texas hub has over 220 incoming flights DAILY serving 120 cities, ranging from Abilene to Wichita Falls.Add all the other airlines and the airport handles 58 million passengers a year or over 152,000 every day.

Of course, it’s about a lot more than numbers.

Despite the current economic situation, the demographics determine that a substantial percentage of Americans still have the means to travel. Continue reading

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Filed under Aviation, Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Tourism, Travel

New York Times’ Frugal Traveler loves Barbados – because of Bajans

“Bajans treat foreigners with incredible kindness”

“You’ve got one heck of an island.”

Seth Kugel writes Frugal Traveler for the New York Times and he’s more likely to be found sleeping in a low-end guest house than at, for instance, Sandy Lane. We know of him because while he was in Barbados last week he sent a BFP story link to his 77,000 Twitter followers.

His new article is posted at the New York Times and it’s all about his Barbados trip. What a wonderful tribute it is to Bajans and Barbados. As Seth points out, other places have sand and the surf, but it was ordinary Bajans who made last week special for him.

We encourage every Bajan to read what Frugal Traveler says about Barbados. You’ll be proud, happy and reminded that each one of us has the power to make every visitor want to keep coming back to Bim.

Seth also calls out a few names of local folks who showed him kindness.

“we were all waved into the dance party at McBride’s, where a mixed crowd of tourists, Barbadians and Barbadian-American tourists packed the sweaty house.

It was a nice change from my trip to slightly stuffy Bermuda. Both had perfect swaths of white sand lapped by brilliantly, pleasantly warm blue waters. But Barbados also had a vibrant, warm, slightly scruffy local scene to go with them. Add to that the incredible kindness with which this island’s residents  — who call themselves Bajans — treat foreigners, and you’ve got one heck of an island.”

Read the whole NYT Frugal Traveler article Barbados for Hikes, Beaches and a Brazilian Boxer’s T-Shirt

photo: Seth Kugel NYT

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Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Tourism, Travel

Please visit our friend… author Walter Phillips

Click on the banner to visit the website of Barbados author Walter Phillips

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Filed under History, Religion

Secret CL Financial bailout of 325 very special shareholders

“If the CL Financial group is insolvent, then how are we paying for all this? Yes, that is the big question.”

“For the record, no one from the previous government or the Central Bank, for that matter, has ever even attempted to justify the rotten terms of this bailout.  Not even an attempt to explain the interest-free, unlimited, unsecured loan to that lucky group of 325 CL Financial shareholders.”

What is this campaign?

by Afra Raymond

We are witness to a second wave of assault on our Treasury.  Let us be sure, those of us who are not in line to benefit directly from the bailout, that the picture is complicated and it contains perils for the entire country.

The original bailout was an unjustifiable and colossal facility granted to the CL Financial Chiefs and the shareholders of that failed, privately-owned, group. I say facility because the taxpayers’ money in our Treasury was pledged to repay the debts of the CL Financial group.

The deal was hatched in secret. The fact is, upon reflection, its terms were never formally debated in our Parliament. Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Business & Banking, Consumer Issues, Corruption, Crime & Law, Economy, Offshore Investments

Kidnapper of Great Train Robber Ronald Biggs returning to Barbados

Bajan extradition order against Freddie Prime lifted after 29 years.

The last time Freddie Prime visited Barbados was in January of 2009. His vacation lasted until he reached the Immigration desk where officers arrested the 80 year old grandfather and then shoved him back onto the same airplane he’d arrived on – now heading home to the UK.

The trouble for Mr. Prime began in 1981 when he was part of a group of ex-soldiers who kidnapped escaped Great Train Robber Ronnie Biggs from his hiding spot in Brazil. They spirited him away to Barbados thinking that our government would extradite Biggs back to the UK. Prime and his team thought wrong.

Biggs ended up going back to Brazil and Freddie Prime and the other kidnappers were ordered deported from Barbados on March 27, 1981.

Some 28 years later in January of 2009 Barbados Immigration hadn’t forgotten about the extradition order against Mr. Prime, so when he arrived for a vacation he was summarily turfed from Barbados.

All is forgiven Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Crime & Law, History, Immigration

Mia says “Hard Times a’ comin’.” Cliverton says she looks sultry…

1:23am Grape Hall, Barbados.

sul·try/ˈsəltrē/Adjective
1. (of the air or weather) Hot and humid.
2. (of a person, esp. a woman) Attractive in a way that suggests a passionate nature

Ok. Had afew or more.

Listening to AC/DC over the net on Powerland at www.radionomy.com. All the AC/DC all the time. Now playing: Highway to Hell, then Bad Boy Boogie live. LIVE I tell ya!

Surfing to The Nation and I see an article Mia: More hard times

It’s about the economy but pay no attention. Look at the photo. Hot and humid, fuh sure!

Damn, Mia’s almost sultry. Look at the downcast eyes. The hair a little askew. Nice lips. Maybe not “almost”. Damn!

I know she’s got a few years on me, but look at the photo. Something a little wild there. Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Politics

Please visit our friends at… Peach and Quiet Hotel

Click on the banner to visit the website of the award-winning Peach and Quiet Hotel

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Filed under Barbados

Suggestion for the Barbados Tourism Authority: Give “Britain’s unluckiest bride” a free honeymoon!

UPDATE: Bajans pitching in!

Peach and Quiet Hotel offers up to 14 days of accommodation to the Wilsons, including some meals! What a wonderful contribution by Mr. & Mrs. Loveridge.

Who’s next to help out? Does Sir Richard Branson read Barbados Free Press? We could use some air tickets. Maybe someone can send this to Virgin Atlantic?

Meanwhile, let’s hear from some other folks. It doesn’t have to be a huge offer. If you’re in the tourism business, just do something nice within your means.

How about a free dinner from Marcia’s Place at Oistins or some fishing with Shaun Sandiford? Somebody phone them up and ask them to help give this couple a honeymoon they will cherish.

Come on folks, it’s time to show what Barbados can do!

Original story…

We should do something nice for these newlyweds – and the publicity wouldn’t hurt Barbados either.

* This article was suggested by one of BFP’s readers via email.

Yvonne Wilson and her new husband Dennis planned on a Barbados honeymoon and saved for over a year, but that was before she collapsed twice at her wedding reception and had to have surgery. It turned out to be benign tumour, but when they discovered there was a six month waiting list for the operation and Yvonne was in such pain, Mr and Mrs Wilson decided to cancel their £3,000 holiday in Barbados and instead use the cash for her operation. Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism

Barbados Bar Association blames public for choosing crooked lawyers “at random”

President Leslie Haynes cautions public to avoid lawyers with “cash flow problems”, and to ignore recommendations of friends.

Barbados Bar Association website recommends lawyers who have been caught stealing from clients!

The President of the Barbados Bar Association vented at the public on Saturday while appearing at a seminar on conveyancing. When asked about the high number of lawyers lately charged with misappropriating clients’ money, Leslie “blame the victims” Haynes said that Barbadians “have to stop picking a lawyer at random or choosing one simply because a friend suggested a name.”

So it is the fault of the chickens for not knowing which mongoose will eat them. Or, more properly, the fault of honest Barbadians for not knowing which lawyers are dishonest.

The Barbados Bar Association does not provide a list of lawyers who have been disciplined or took money then paid it back when caught. Why not?

Shocker!

Astoundingly, BBA President Haynes also predicted that more Barbados lawyers will misappropriate their clients’ money because times are tough… Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Consumer Issues, Corruption, Crime & Law, Ethics, Real Estate

The Muslim vision of the future for all Barbadian women

We were happy to see the girls and women of the Alfalah Muslim School out on the weekend helping to clean up Long Beach.

Their veils, dress and close supervision are not the norm in Barbados – but will be the norm for all Barbadian women if the Muslim vision for the future of Barbados becomes reality.

Photo credit – The Nation: All hands on deck!

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Filed under Barbados, Human Rights, Religion

Dilma Rousseff about to be elected as Brazil’s first female President. Meanwhile, in Barbados…

If the polls and pundits are correct

… a former Marxist urban guerrilla who was arrested and tortured by the military government in 1970 is about to be elected as the first female President of the South American powerhouse known as Brazil.

With Brazil having a population of 200 million, incredible resources and an economy that is on the rise unlike most other countries, 63 year old grandmother Dilma Rousseff will arguably become the most powerful woman in the world. This is all the more remarkable because Ms. Rousseff was diagnosed in April of 2009 with lymphatic cancer – which is “under control” according to her party.

Hopefully the BHTA, BTA and some of our other leaders will get those congratulatory letters composed and all ready to go. It doesn’t hurt to be first to offer best wishes, you know – because it shows that Barbados cares about Brazil. (Hey, who in the neighbourhood wouldn’t care? Brazil has 200 million people and they are practically within waving distance. I can’t believe it took over ten years to put up a Portuguese language tourism website and welcome signs at Grantley Adams but that’s another story.)

The Sydney Morning Herald has an excellent article that explains why Brazil is so important right now and how Ms. Rousseff has the backing of retiring President Lula da Silva: Steamroller push for next Brazilian President

Does Barbados elect enough women to Parliament?

Inspired by Ms. Rousseff’s impending election, we also want to take the opportunity to compare the number of women elected as Members of Parliament in Barbados with a few other countries. Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Culture & Race Issues, Politics

Barbados pimp starts Caribbean Gay social media website – sets gay cause back 50 years.

The Nation Newspaper buys into Human Rights discussions hosted by a pimp.

by Cliverton

Let’s make one thing clear before we start: no matter our differing views on many topics, each of the staff at Barbados Free Press loathes Charles Lewis – the admitted pimp and self-proclaimed “sex industry expert” usually seen being interviewed by the Barbados news media on a slow day. In today’s Nation, Lewis announces he’s all for gays. He doesn’t realise that like most Barbadians, most gays probably view pimps the same as we do. (The Nation: Gay network online)

You can get an understanding of our feelings by reading our last article on Mr. Lewis: Barbados Pimp pushes “sustainable” development of sex tourism. All he needs is to recruit your children…

A daughter or son is still my child no matter what their age. Mr. Lewis is a proponent of having our children selling themselves to strangers for foreign exchange. In my value system, and in the minds of tens of thousands of other Bajans, that puts Mr. Lewis just a little lower than toilet bowl scum.

But that doesn’t seem to bother The Nation Newspaper who interview Mr. Lewis like he’s just a normal person with a normal job. “Nothing wrong here” is the message from The Nation.

That’s not how I see it. Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Culture & Race Issues, Human Rights

Nation Newspaper censors Kammie Holder’s latest column. Read it here.

by Kammie Holder

Here is (my latest Friday Nation column) Swimming Upstream which was not published 24 September 2010. We now know clearly why some politicians behave the way they do and why some persons feel they are more equal than others in Barbados. Thus as an ignorant and naive person I wish to share this with the wider public. The blogs are uncensored and sometimes libelous but fair enough to allow persons to judge fact from fiction. Its never my aim to libel or slander but to only speak my mind in a respectable way. You judge for yourself.

Wimps, Pimps and Political deadweights.

After hearing the mouthings of Charles Skeete, Owen Arthur, David Ellis, Vincent Layne and Mia Mottley I am scared. Why am I scared? The forty or more years of growth Barbados has seen is being threatened by a lack of clarity of purpose by my government. As a patriotic Bajan I run the real risk of being marginalized for calling things as I see them or even targeted by the vindictive among us. However, the national risk is even greater than the local risk to me thus I accept whatever poison arrows may be shot at me.  Never, will I swap my integrity or honesty for a token invite to a social gathering at the expense of being a wimp or pimp. Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Barbados News & Media, Corruption, Economy, Ethics, Freedom Of Information, Freedom Of The Press, Human Rights, News Media, Offshore Investments, Political Corruption, Politics, Politics & Corruption

Cameron Electric Vehicles aiming to help Barbados go green!

Another Cameron electric-bicycle tour coming to Barbados in October

Barbados and being environmentally green

submitted by: Cameron EV Electric Vehicles

It was grand to see the media treatment regarding Arbor Day.

A Nation News newspaper article on Sep 23, 2010 featuring a tree planting at the Accra Beach Hotel & Spa caught my reading. The article stated that the Accra Beach Hotel & Spa is a ‘certified green hotel’. Investigation of this ‘green hotel certification’ revealed the Accra Beach Hotel & Spa is registered with ‘Green Globe’ for membership and certification. Well done to the Accra Beach Hotel Green Team.

With ten (10) resorts, hotels and guesthouses in Barbados having Green Globe Accreditation it is evident tourists are concerned about the environment.

With the testing of electric power-assisted bicycles (e-bikes) by CameronEV-Electric Vehicles in Barbados, (with three (3) e-bikes and over 2,000 km traveled over the past year) the lack of environmental awareness in Barbados is evident in most places we traveled. Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Energy, Environment, Technology

CL Financial ‘sweetheart bailout agreement’ – Lawrence Duprey comfortable as investors search for the missing 76.8 BILLION dollars

“In my view, the most odious aspect of the entire bailout is that the wealthiest individual in the Caribbean was able to negotiate the largest-ever loan from our Treasury at zero interest on the basis of a letter.”

“For those of us who did not invest with CLICO, the mere idea of our taxpayers’ funds being used to rescue these who placed these high-return deposits is deeply offensive.”

“Both the CL Financial chiefs and the depositors who took the chance at investing at those incredible rates of return are being spared the consequences of their decisions by the bailout process.”

…quotes from Afra Raymond as he tells it like it is in this new article

Disturbing Arrangements in the 2011 Budget

by Afra Raymond

Winston Dookeran’s budget proposals to re-order the ongoing CL Financial bailout have sparked considerable controversy.  Dookeran stated his first priority to be “Stop the drift and indecision…” – ironically enough, it appears that the sentiments of the public are moving in another direction entirely.  A new mood of protest and threats of impending lawsuits have emerged.  This is a live example of the law of unintended consequences.

The budget’s revised proposals are –

  • Immediate stop on all interest payments;
  • $75,000 claims from depositors to be settled immediately;
  • Balances exceeding that threshold to be repaid over 20 years, with no interest payable;
  • The group to be re-structured, with CLICO and British-American Insurance Company (BAICO) to be merged and prepared for divestment;
  • …Those responsible for this crisis must be held accountable.…Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Business & Banking, Consumer Issues, Corruption, Economy, Freedom Of Information, Offshore Investments, Political Corruption, Politics, Politics & Corruption

New York Times’ Frugal Traveler Tweets Barbados Free Press article to 77,000 followers!

Whoa Lord! I did not know the power of the internet until now.

A couple of days ago the New York Times – Icon with a capital “I”, news institution – featured a Barbados Free Press article via Twitter.

Within a few hours a single tweet to 77,000 followers of The Frugal Traveler brought thousands to the BFP article Big excitement in Barbados over direct Brazil flights – but still no Portuguese language on Barbados Tourism Authority website after ten years.

We don’t know what to say. To have so many folks from around the world read our words is an honour and a responsibility we do not take lightly. Wish we had some journalist training or background – but maybe the lack of is what folks like about us. We wear our hearts on our sleeves and when we make mistakes we make them in front of all. Never denied, and when corrected we leave them to stand – unlike the traditional Bajan news media who disappear stories every day.

Please forgive this self-indulgent post but I may have had a rum or three tonight and the sun is peeking over the horizon nevermind the clouds.

Gotta go… she’s a pretty thing ya know!

Cliverton

PS. She’s got me thinking about the M word. Very disturbing.

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Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Blogging, Freedom Of The Press

Tourism Matters: Where is Barbados’ Tourism Master Plan? Where is our YouTube campaign?

Closed hotels, lost opportunities and a failure to embrace You-Tube. (It’s free! It works! Why aren’t we running to use it?)

by Adrian Loveridge, small hotel owner.

When a senior executive of a major American based travel oriented advertising agency recently told me that more people now log onto YouTube daily, than view the entire combined United States television networks, it got me thinking whether ‘we’ as a destination are maximising the use of the social networks. In fact, according to their own website, ‘people are watching 2 billion videos a day on YouTube and uploading hundreds of thousands’ of them.

With such a powerful marketing tool, which is currently free to use, it frankly surprised me that either collectively or as individual tourism entities we do not appear to fully capitalise on this amazing opportunity. Log-on to YouTube, then type in ‘Barbados’ and the first three pages or 66 videos, mostly comprise of amateur films of various qualities. Despite this, some of them have attracted over 200,000 viewings. Only about three or four are professionally produced and perhaps portray Barbados as a destination in a competitive environment that could tempt a first time visitor. Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Tourism, Travel, Traveling and Tourism