Chilly Winter for Tourist Industry

12 January 2002 12:00am
godking

Bridgetown._ Despite a heartening flurry of late bookings this winter season, Barbados’ hoteliers may not be smiling too broadly, as The Nation daily reported.

Reduced business is affecting top class properties as well as the much less pricey apartments, asserted the newspaper that looked into the issue. To analyze the situation The Nation listed the properties as A, B, C and D.

A rated properties: Cobblers Cove hotel expects its occupancy to be 10 per cent down from last year and run at around 68 per cent.

According to general manager Hamish Watson the December occupancy stood at 67 per cent.

He said the prediction for January was 73 per cent and was likely to move up to 75 per cent if things went well.

Watson added that the long term effect of September 11 was still being felt but there were very few cancellations recently.

The Cobblers Cove manager said there were last minute bookings and this could improve by two to three per cent between January to April.

Falling world economies have had an impact on business but not drastic.

“As with anywhere else, the downturn in the world economies has affected business but not in a major way.”

The hotel is still receiving lots of repeat winter business.

Watson is optimistic that there could be some slight improvements, but the ten per cent decline in occupancy seems to be how this winter will be for them.

Meanwhile, the Elegant properties are showing differing occupancies at the various properties.

Chief operating officer Gildas Renaux said they were not doing too badly with Colony Club and Turtle Beach almost fully booked over the New Year.

“We are having amazing last minute reservations on a daily basis,” said Renaux.

Tamarind and Crystal Cove are both running at 85 per cent, while Coconut Creek is around 75 per cent.

The American market was still down since September 11, he said, but all the European flights were sold out, especially those from England and Germany. Cancellations have not be

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