After delay...Memories open for business

by: Ashley Penn, News Reporter

Memories Grand Bahama, a newly reconstructed beachfront property that now occupies the former Reef Hotel establishment has opened its doors after experiencing a delay last month.

The resort, which had reportedly opened its public facilities from the start of this month is anticipated to operate at 100 percent occupancy as 700 guests are expected on island this weekend.

Despite setbacks incurred during the construction stages of the hotel, Ministry of Tourism General Manager, Betty Bethel, said she is pleased to see the project near its completion after much effort.

" The flights are coming in full and this weekend we are expecting over 700 guests at Memories alone, we are very excited about that because the bedrooms are open, all of the public facilities are open. All of the restaurants are open except one,"  she said.

Bethel also noted that not only is the hotel occupied with a great deal of guests, but they are seeking to utilize tours and other services to further explore the possibilities on the island.

" In our observations, everyone is having a good time, the beaches are full, the pool area and the swim up bar and the comments are very positive. A lot of the guests are spending a lot of money on land and sea tours. The traditional thinking is all-inclusive guests don't venture outside of the properties but this is a totally different scenario,"  she added.

" These guests are adventurous types, they love exploring and they love tours and attractions and they spend very heavily in those areas and weâ re seeing the results of that,"  Bethel continued.

The all-inclusive resort currently employs 500 people and will have all rooms online in time for Valentine's Day.

However, she noted that although the grand project has experienced its fair share of setbacks, she is cautiously hyped with major accomplishments, but noted that presenting a proper tourism product was the main focus.

" We're elated. We see that our labor has not been in vein it has been a long road but we wanted to get it right because we knew that we had one opportunity to get it right and make sure that the tourist want to come back,"  Bethel added.

She went on to say, "Its not about a one time offer, we want to generate repeat visitors to Grand Bahama and so by the time the eight cities out of the U.S. come on stream, we would have gotten it just as we wanted and we know that we would be offering a superior product with superior customer service." 

Memories Grand Bahama is in the planning stages of its official opening, which is set for sometime next month.

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