Daily Archives: March 8, 2013

Hard times coming to Bim. Are you ready?

2013 Almond Barbados

“Booming Bim? Here is the current state of affairs at the Almond Hotel. We were there last week and it’s not pretty.”

… an old friend sends a photo to BFP (click on photo for large)

How many people do you know still waiting for VAT and tax refunds? If you’re like us, you know plenty. The government doan have much money these days.

How many people do you know who were laid off in the last year and haven’t managed to find another real job? Answer: lots and lots.

How many hotels and businesses gone or just hanging on? How many shops in the city are understaffed because they laid off the newbies when the “high season” tanked this January?

Been to the Gap lately? You could have Jamaican gang shootouts on the street and not hurt a soul. Maybe we should rent the place out for that purpose… at least then there would be something happening at the Gap!

And let’s not get started about how many airline seats we lost in the last year with Dallas Fort-Worth, Atlanta. Let’s not talk about CLICO, the downgrades or raiding our NIS pensions to “invest” in doomed hotel projects.

We’ve said it before, and we’ll keep saying it…

1/ Shun debt. Shun expenses. Live as frugally as you can.

2/ Work hard, save what you can.

3/ Look after family and friends as you are able because you might need their help someday.

4/ Learn to grow food, repair your own car, maintain your own home. Repair clothes, repair everything. Don’t buy new anything: let some other fool pay the depreciation!

5/ Smile at the tourists, make them feel welcome but never pressured. Pick up the rubbish where you can and never do anything that takes away from the beauty of Bim.

6/ Thank God for what you do have – then get back to working harder than you ever have before.

We can do this, folks. But it can’t be business as usual.


Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Economy

Harlequin Barbados H Hotel – latest photos show stopped project, no workers

2013March H-Hotel 2

(click photo for large)

Sign still says “Harlequin Hotels & Resorts – H Hotel Opening 2013”

Barbados Free Press has been posting H-Hotel project photos since February 2012. The sign used to say “Opening 2012”, but they changed that to 2013 earlier this year. If Harlequin intends to open its Barbados H Hotel this year, the invisible construction workers at the site had better get cracking!

Here are the most recent two sets of photos with the dates imprinted bottom right corner – 8:45am Thursday January 31, 2013 and 2:30pm Monday March 4, 2013. The only difference seems to be that the earlier photos show a worker or two, whereas there were no workers visible at the site on Monday, March 4th at approx 230 PM.

Remember folks – these photos were taken during working hours on working days – on a Thursday at 8:45am and a Monday at 2:30pm. Where are the workers? Where are the trucks coming and going? Why are the gates closed? Where is the machinery? Where is the construction noise, foremen with drawings and teams of masons, welders, concrete finishers?

This doesn’t look like a healthy, vibrant construction site to us – it looks more like a project that has run out of money.

To be fair, Harlequin posted a blog that shows some work happening at the site and in our photos we see some new columns and changes here and there. But look at the photos starting in February 2012 and now 15 months later – We don’t see healthy progress or the kind of activity necessary to open in 2013.

Harlequin: You tell us if we’re wrong and we’ll print your side of the story. Were our eyes deceiving us with not one man on the site last Monday?

And here are photos from a year ago. Is this really acceptable, vibrant progress? Harlequin… over to you!

Barbados H Hotel 3

BFP’s H Hotel Photo Articles – You be the judge!

March 23, 2012

August 3, 2012

October 13, 2012

January 26, 2013

Full set of recent photos   Continue reading


Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism

All Sugar Hill Resort staff to be fingerprinted by police. No refusals allowed.

Barbados Police Fingerprints click image for police letter demanding staff fingerprints

Dear Barbados Free Press:

The police are requesting that all staff and contractors at Sugar Hill voluntarily submit for fingerprinting in relation to some break-ins at the resort. Is this legal? Will they also be fingerprinting guests who stayed at the resort? What about friends of owners? People eating at the restaurant during that time?  What will happen to the fingerprints?

This seems wrong and a bit racist. While it appears voluntary, there seems that there might be consequences if you refuse.

Has this fingerprinting been done before at other crime scenes? If something was stolen at a school will the police now be fingerprinting all students and all teachers? If something was stolen at Parliament, will Miss Mottley and Mr. Stuart “be first in line” like Sugar Hill Resort’s operations manager volunteers? Where is this going? Is this the new normal for the Barbados Police?


The email from Sugar Hill Resort management…

From: sugarhill
Date: 6 March 2013
Subject: RBPF Finger Printing Staff at Sugar Hill

Dear All,

As you are aware our file was passed to the Major Crimes Department in the Royal Barbados Police Force (RBPF). They have requested that all Staff with access to the Estate be finger printed as they are in possession of some forensic evidence, finger prints, from properties that suffered burglaries. See attached their letter of request. Continue reading


Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Crime & Law, Police