Hotelier Rob Barrett tipped to invest in and manage Jolly Beach Resort

Rob Barratt

The eminent businessman behind Elite Island Resorts looks set to add another hotel to his hospitality portfolio.

Prime Minister Gaston Browne confirmed on Saturday that Rob Barrett, who already owns several major hotels in Antigua including Galley Bay Resort and St James Club, will soon manage the Jolly Beach Resort.

Barrett is said to be investing US$10 million into the beachfront property which closed more than two years ago, leaving hundreds of people out of work.

The money is really a loan to the government to repair the hotel and rebuild some of its structures, according to Browne.

As part of the deal, Barrett will be entitled to operate the facility.Browne says the loan will also deal with compensating the resort’s former workers who are collectively owed more than EC$7 million in severance and outstanding payments.

“We held discussions with Barrett, perhaps one of our largest hoteliers, for the government to borrow the money and quickly repair the hotel and various facilities.

“We will have to rebuild some of the facilities including the restaurant and get some new equipment. It will cost about USD$10 million. We will give Rob Barrett a management contract to operate the facility,” Browne said.

“We are empathetic to the situation with the workers…what the government is trying to do is salvage the situation, buy the property and pay them their severance,” he added.

The government took over the property in 2020 due to the business owing millions of dollars to the state, including in outstanding Medical Benefits and Social Security contributions.

The 464-room resort has been closed to vacationers since March 2020 when travel to the twin island nation came to a halt as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. SOURCE: OBSERVER

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    • Ras Smood aka Jumbee Picknee!

      Gaston, Harold, JoAnne! Hail r u see dat! Put Vere Cornwall Edwards pan U ticket! All dem Ras Smood imitators, dung return me #Deposit! Plus, me no want none pay from de Treasury, first five years inna Parliament.
      All salaries go to an Educational Fund!
      The only thing I n I need, is an Electric Bike!
      Me Amish Sunroof Buggy is on order!

      Ras Smood
      Son of Mami Watts & Papq Elegba!

      CITY WEST!

      Ras Smood
      CITY WEST!

    • When one builds wealth, they build it for generations to come. You think Bill Gates or Jeff Bezos, or Elon Musk can spend all the money they have? We must learn to start creating wealth and not leave it to our children and their children’s children to fight for themselves. That is why they will always be living in poverty or trying to make ends meet.

      • @From The Sideline…de Original Ras Smood aka Jumbee Picknee de ‘ole dutty_fut_bastazz, dat rise fram de bath watah!
        At least, me get a wash kin!

        When it comes to #generational wealth, we already know the story, and what time it is!

        …But, in the mean time! You feel de rhythm yet!
        …Gaston and de minions, a get vex! Vex!
        …dat dem a #share! Dem a #tweet! And, dem #text! #Text!

        …so, asking Skye! Oh gud why? Why?
        …ABLP? Why? Why?
        …why they fraid, Ras Smood?
        …I, thought they said, he’s to vile and rude!
        …but, I’m sure your noticed something!
        …as, the #Top_Dawg brought you in
        …From The Sideline!
        …your friend Tenman, running around like a headless chicken!
        …headless chicken! A goh clip Maria Wings!
        …so, a ask you too, why? Oh why?
        …dey start campaigning against H.I.M.
        … wen, Ras Smood ain’t even throw his hat, in de ring!
        …but, anyhow! I won’t even row!
        …’cause, de #All look like
        …in de middle of de night!
        …Dr. Skye, they’ll be having a cow!
        …not no calf! A full grown cow!

        Samantha a wey U dey?
        Cutie, a wah U a say?
        Weston, lukkah Love_Handle!
        So, wen U want a Jingle!
        Gaston dun kno!
        ‘Cause,Blondelle tell him so!
        Dis Ras Smood, but H.I.M., no simple!

        Ras Smood
        Son of Mami_Wata and Papa_Elegba

      • @From The Sideline
        Obviously, if somebody is living and trying to make ends meet, how are they going to create wealth? Are they going to CUB or any other bank without collateral? I just like hearing you people talk about wealth creation when the majority of the one percent got rich because they are politicians and they and their children got rich off government lands and assets. Plus the ones fronting for for government ministers. And the people who are part of the corruption. One member of parliament said that this investor came to Antigua with an empty suitcase and he and a member of parliament now own 14 hotels and counting.
        How many ordinary Antiguans getting acres of government lands
        for $3 a square foot?
        All of you people, including the prime minister, mocking poor Antiguans, the majority of whom are making less than $3000 per month. You should shake out your mattresses and see how many government assets fall out.

        • I’m glad that my father worked hard and sent me and my siblings to university. Cause he understood that knowledge is power. But then again, I also look up at many ordinary Antiguans and Barbudans who made the best of live. People like Mr. Harney, Mr. George Ryan, Mr. Eustace Francis, and the entire Francis Family of Kenedy’s Club and the new TCM, Wills Martin, Mr. Joseph, and the list goes on and on. But sadly, you only have your eyes set on politicians and only see obstacles in the way of creating wealth for your future generation. The glass is never half empty for me. And where there is a will there will be a way. Believe in yourself. Creating wealth starts with one dollar. My children don’t have to live in poverty because I have provided wealth for them. I hope they have learned from me and ensure they provide for their children and their children’s children.

  1. Dam it man. Push down the entire place. It has the best beach in Antigua!
    These guys are wolves

  2. Standby for walls, possible creation of an enclave, limited beach access etc. if Devil’s Bridge National Park is anything to go by.

    Thank you to a private businessman and his ministerial partner for bailing out the Government at this important pre-election time.

    Curious for details of the deal struck on behalf of the A&B people – strangely no government is transparent over this, or in any of their other ‘deals’.
    Financial concessions? Tax holiday? Fixer fees? Free entry to non-caricom staff? etc.etc.etc.

    Time will tell.

  3. The Government is putting their eggs into this man’s big basket.This man would be the “ruler” in Antigua for sure.He owns multiple Hotels,Supermarkets,and many more businesses in Antigua.If he decides to shut down for a few days,the Nation would be in a financial distress.He has the monopoly on all things Antigua.Reminder,those who control the ECONOMY ARE IN CONTROL.They are the RULERS.The Politicians eat from their hands what ever is fed to them.

  4. There are few people in this country that put their money where their mouth is. It is very easy to say you love this country, but when one asks, ‘what have you done for her lately’, you have nothing to show. Actually, most locals ‘born’ Antiguans only take from her and don’t give back anything. yet they claim to have more rights than the investors that come here and make their contributions over and over again. The PM last disclosed that he received just about 35 million in grants from wealthy individuals who have made Antigua their home. That is done out of love for the country. And to think that we have quite a few Antiguans with more than six figures in the bank. But they will never give to the benefit of their country or countrymen/women. I therefore want to applaud Mr. Barret on behalf of the grateful Antiguans and Barbudans, for yet again coming forward and putting his money where his mouth is and although it business, he again is willing to put his money at risk. Many will again be employed, and the country will benefit in the end from the tourists it can now welcome to the Jolly Beach Resort. I mean my opinion has not changed when it comes to what to do with this property. I think we need to break it down and build a five-star hotel on that beautiful beach. I guess they are convincing the PM that we need the back of the plane filled.

    • Haul and pull up yourself from @ The Sidelines, I know a good handful of indigenous Antiguan businessmen that have excessive financial barriers put in front of them, whereas individuals from overseas are given better concessions by this government.

      Unless you have witnessed this yourself, you cannot assume that there’s a level business playing field for everyone.

      • Bull Shit. Pure and simple. Everyone gets the same deal. Ask Tabor why it is up to this day nothing has become of the Willoughby Bay Development. Lands were sold to Antiguan born businessmen at peppercorn prices. Twenty-Five Acres of Land. All they needed to do was to raise the funds to develop the land. We are now about twenty-five years later and nothing. They have one another in court. When the ABIB Group was climbing to the top it made me proud. Sadly, it had to end this way. They should have stayed out of politics. The inept UPP party was their death sentence. In particular, Harold Lovell who failed to bail them out when they needed him the most.

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