Daily Archives: December 3, 2011

Minister Sealy takes 135 Tourism Ministry employees to Guyana for weekend retreat… WTF?

Didn’t we have enough empty hotel rooms to hold the conference in Barbados?

Dear Barbados Free Press,

It’s true that you can find diamonds in the rubbish bin and pearls of tourism knowledge in Guyana – a country known for it’s high-end tourist market just like Barbados. We might have our “Platinum Coast” but Guyana has its famous “Driftwood Swamp” that is home to international stars and billionaires like, ah… ah… Give me a minute, I’ll get back to naming them later.

There is much we can learn from Guyana’s tourism industry and that is probably why Minister Sealy (photo above) is spending hundreds of thousands of our tax dollars to take his people away for a weekend in Guyana.

Joking aside, don’t we have enough empty hotel rooms to hold the conference in Barbados?

I’m not a Tourism Ministry employee. I admit I probably don’t understand the necessity of spending this kind of money in these times, and I probably don’t understand what will be accomplished in Guyana that could not have been accomplished here at the Hilton. It may be that Guyana will be sending 135 people to Barbados next week for their conference and we’ll get all this money back.

Can anyone explain how this makes sense?

Yours truly,

Dazed and confused in French Village

Barbados’ Tourism Minister Richard Sealy has led a 135-person contingent from his ministry to Guyana for a weekend retreat.

According to the Government Information Agency (GINA), the retreat is part of a fact finding mission and Minister Sealy expressed appreciation for the warm welcome which he stressed was given even before the contingent arrived in Guyana. He indicated that the trip to Guyana is a fact finding one since the two countries have two different tourism packages to offer.

Stabroek News: 135-person Barbados tourism contingent on fact finding mission


Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism

Four Seasons Bahamas was a disaster for investors. Why will Barbados be different?

Hundreds of millions of dollars lost

My fellow Bajans, I could write for hours today to compare the 2009 failure of the Four Seasons Resort Great Exuma with the recent calls to “invest” our NIS pension money in the on-life-support Barbados Four Seasons project.

But I’m not going to. Really… what is there to talk about?

At a certain point in time, there’s nothing more to be said.

The patient has been brain dead for months and no amount of heroic efforts will succeed. The resources are better used elsewhere. Pull the plug. End the suffering.

OR: Let it fail, then buy it at pennies on the dollar…

Say… that’s an idea! Why don’t we let the Four Seasons project fail, then purchase it for a good price? Why pump money into the project just to mitigate the losses of private investors?



Now is the time at BFP when we juxtapose…

“(Four Seasons Barbados) is a viable project that can bring massive returns to investor and country, why on earth would Barbados want to turn its back on this project?”

Barbados Finance Minister Chris Sinckler in full bullshit mode as quoted September 28, 2011 in BFP’s Four Seasons Barbados wants your pension money

Tourist Drought Sinks Four Seasons in Bahamas

“We reluctantly had to control further losses,” Mr. Downs said. The property was on track to lose more than $5 million this year, as occupancies slipped recently into the 50% range, he said.

The resort, which contains a 180-room hotel, a marina and an 18-hole golf course, opened in 2003 and cost about $350 million to develop. The property is still on the block but now Mr. Downs says it will likely sell for less than $100 million. “The timing has been unfortunate,” Mr. Downs said. The starting rate for a room at the hotel was $495.

Wall Street Journal, May 27, 2009: Tourist Drought Sinks Four Seasons in Bahamas

Four Seasons worth the risk

“The potential high return justifies the risk, and the national interest will clearly be served if the Four Seasons project succeeds, and thus helps to restore confidence in the Barbados economy.”

Bob Verdun gives his opinion at the Barbados Advocate Four Seasons worth the risk!

Question for Mr. Verdun… Exactly how much NIS pension funds are you personally risking?

That’s what we thought.


Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism