ST. GEORGE’S, Grenada, Tuesday April 29, 2014, CMC – Four months after receiving the first set of visitors, Sandals LaSource was officially opened here on Monday night as the latest addition to the expanding chain of Sandals Resorts.
The multi-million dollar project was officially launched in November 2012 with a promised date to have guests enjoying the “Sandals experience” by December 12. But a delay due to weather and other operational challenges resulted in first guests arriving December 21.
“What happened here is a miracle,” said Sandals Resorts chairman Gordon ‘Butch” Stewart, adding “this was organized chaos, but they adapted themselves and we are all here today,” in reference to the estimated 1,800 construction workers.
Praising the building skills of the construction workers, Butch told the more than 600 guests that the ability of Grenada’s construction workers was “excellent and among the best in the region”.
Prime Minister Dr. Keith Mitchell, told the ceremony that “over the last year and a half or so, we have watched this giant of a business, and this business giant in Butch Stewart, transform our hotel landscape and by so doing, he has helped to reverse our economic outlook.
“We have seen right here at Sandals, the provision of hundreds of jobs for our young people—and not just jobs, but highly skilled jobs.
“Employment which obliges our people to improve on their level of service and practices; employment which provides a platform for upward mobility in their areas of expertise,” he said while commending the management of Sandals for their vision in ensuring that the education of their employees is a continuous process,” he added.
Mitchell, who is also the Finance Minister, said that there are lots of untapped potential in the hotel sector, noting “all the successful and ambitious hoteliers island wide need to come to terms with the view that the pool is large enough for all.
“Sandals has built on the successes of our existing hoteliers and presented us with prime opportunities for partnerships. Every additional hotel investment, if managed effectively, can be a win a win-win for all hoteliers, and for the country,” he said.
Tourism Minister Alexandria Otway-Noel said that the Sandals brand in Grenada will assist the island as it embarks on initiatives to reposition itself under its new brand of ‘Pure Grenada.”
“‘This new brand captures everything we have to offer in our destination…this brand embraces everything we hold dear and Sandals is offering an experience that fits within our brand,” she said while explaining that Grenada has experience increase arrival for the first quarter of 2014.
Sandals chief executive officer Adam Stewart promised Otway that his company will not disappoint in the promotion of the islands.
“We will not let you down, Grenada we will take you to the world,” he said.
The highlight of the opening ceremony was the presentation of a Six Diamond Award from the American Academy of Hospitality Science.