The Bahamas Weekly: Eric Rose, February 15, 2017

PM Christie Congratulates One & Only Ocean Club on Re-Opening

NASSAU, The Bahamas — Prime Minister and Minister of Finance the Rt. Hon. Perry Christie publicly congratulated the owners, management and staff of the One & Only Ocean Club for the “wonderful” distinction of being named to the Travel & Leisure “IT” list of best hotels on the planet last year and to know that, as a result of the recent $12 million capital development project, the resort will continue to maintain its ranking as one of the top 10 resorts in the region.

“The One & Only Ocean Club is among a very select group of ultra-high end resorts nestled in some of the most spectacular and pristine environments to be found on the planet,” Prime Minister Christie said during the Re-Opening Ceremony held at the resort, on February 13, 2017.

“We in The Bahamas are very proud of the fact that this 55-year-old, magnificent estate, which has become synonymous with the name Paradise Island, continues to be a fixture of the Bahamian landscape and that the resort, like its sister properties in other parts of the world, maintains its brand standard that is unrivalled, with a unique and distinctive flair,” Prime Minister Christie said.

Notwithstanding the property’s attributes and service excellence, Prime Minister said that his Government also recognizes that the One & Only Ocean Club is operating in an extremely competitive environment.

The Government was, therefore, very appreciative of the decision of OC Resort Holdings Limited to commence refurbishments some 10 months ago, with renovation of 55 rooms and suites in the Hartford Wing, expansion of Dune Restaurant, upgrade of technology systems and improvement to landscaping, water features and other support infrastructure, “I was pleased to know that these efforts would generate 100 new construction jobs for Bahamians over the duration, while ensuring the continued employment of the 435 employees at the resort,” he added.

“When Hurricane Matthew, a strong Category 3 storm, came through in October of last year and we were notified of the closure of the resort due to the extensive damage sustained at the property, I had no questions about your owner’s commitment to the restoration of the One & Only in The Bahamas and was happy to learn that an intensive re-training exercise would be undertaken in the interim.”

Prime Minister Christie stated that he was again pleased to learn that an additional $16 million would be expended in repairs to the roof, flooring, walls and kitchen and the re-launch of marketing and public relations events in New York and Toronto.

He said that he was delighted to have been asked to be there that day to see the finished product and to know that the employees of the resort could get finally back to work.

“You know, when we see the magnificence of this resort and other projects throughout our archipelago, we are assured of an even brighter future and greater economic impact for our number one industry,” Prime Minister Christie said.

“And so I want to thank all of you here today, for doubling down on the delivery of the promise that ‘It’s Better in The Bahamas’.”

Prime Minister Christie reiterated his Government’s appreciation of the significant investment being made by the owners of “this grand property”, and to pledge his Government’s support and encouragement of any future expansion plans.

“To the management and employees, we look forward to restoration of the service and to your relationship matching that of the magnificence of this resort,” he said.