There has been much talk about the growing Chinese economy and its impact on the rest of the world. The latest news on that front is that China is eyeing the tourism potential of the Caribbean. The Far-Eastern country is spending $2.6 billion on a gaming and entertainment resort in the Bahamas. Apparently, this will become the largest resort of its kind within the entire Caribbean region. If all goes to schedule, the 1,000-acre Baha Mar resort should open its doors by late 2014.
On 21 February, ministers from the Bahamas and Chinese business heads gathered in Nassau to attend the groundbreaking ceremony. Among the features that this resort is supposed to have are a 10,000-square-foot casino, a 50,000-square-foot upscale retail strip, an 18-hole championship golf course and a convention centre spread over 200,000 square feet. According to the developers, the Baha Mar resort’s casino will be the largest within the Caribbean.
Also on the cards is a 20-acre water park and three spas located on untouched beaches along the coast of the Bahamian River.
Meanwhile, some 2,250 rooms look set to be created thanks to the expansion plans for properties owned by the likes of Hyatt Hotels & Resorts, Morgans Hotel Group, Rosewood Hotels & Resorts plus a so-far unnamed casino hotel.
Helping fund the project is the Export-Import Bank of China. China State Construction will help in the building.
The Caribbean had been badly hit by the global economic crisis, but things have started picking up again. It is expected that the new tourism project could further boost the situation by creating some 8,000 jobs within the hospitality industry here.