Compiled by Due Diligence
It being close to three years since the name PURE Beach Resort & Spa has come up, DD has not thought of it until recently after reading the story Counting on Hyatt.
The first five paragraphs are below.
Despite the ongoing controversy surrounding the Hyatt hotel project and the possibility of there being further tourism delay, Minister of Tourism Richard Sealy remains optimistic that Barbados will be able to boost its overall room stock by another 2,000-plus rooms by 2019, based on a planned investment of $2 billion.”
Addressing the opening of the Caribbean Tourism Organisation’s State of the Industry Conference (SOTIC) here last night, Sealy issued the same projections that were given by the Chief Executive Officer of the Barbados Tourism Investment Inc (BTI), Stuart Layne, early last month, while listing the proposed Hyatt in Bay Street among projects to be completed by 2018.
“Our objective, basically, is to add at least one or two new products to the inventory –– in other words, one or two hotels every single year commencing in 2015 –– all the way through to 2019 and beyond; to increase the Government’s receipts to about $2 billion [and] to employ an additional 7,500 persons directly and about 16,000 persons indirectly. So you are looking at [close to] 24,000 persons that we are looking to have in the sector or in ancillary development over the next ten years,” said Layne in making the August 5 announcement.
At the time, Layne did not go into details, but he made mention of several projects, including Sandals Casuarina, which he said was working to have an additional 220 rooms by November next year; Hyatt in Bay Street and Wyndham in St Philip, which were to be completed by 2018, providing an additional 640 rooms; a private sector development that would start in Foul Bay, St Philip later this year, providing 309 rooms; and Sandals Beaches and “other planned developments” that were to commence in 2017, providing an additional 400 and 150 rooms respectively.”
“Minister of Tourism Richard Sealy remains optimistic that Barbados will be able to boost its overall room stock by another 2,000-plus rooms by 2019, based on a planned investment of $2 billion.”
2,000 rooms – investment of $2 billion = $ 1 million per room?
According to CAIPO, Ecoterra (Barbados) Ltd apparently the owner/parent/developer of Pure Beach Resort & Spa, was incorporated on July 14, 2008.
Name: ECOTERRA (BARBADOS) LTD.
Date Registered / Incorporated: 14 July 2008
PURE Beach Resort & Spa, the private sector development proposed for Foul Bay, St Philip, was being been promoted as far back as 2009.
To great hoopla, the official ground breaking of PURE Beach Resort & Spa was held on October 11, 2011, with Hon. Adriel Brathwaite (Attorney General) as featured speaker.
A letter dated April 24, 2013, from the Management Team, PURE Beach Resort and Spa Inc. to the “Founding Members” started with:
The recent update letter was sent to all Founding Members to address the current status of PURE project. As stated, while we face challenges, PURE remains an attractive and viable development project as we pursue institutional financing from several sources that will aid in completion of the project.
To date, systemic delay in the approval process and interruption in Ras al-Khaimah (RAK) Sovereign Fundfinancing process has caused PURE project to fall behind the original schedule. Also, continuous flow of funding for PURE project was interrupted when the RAK funding was made known as many of our Joint Venture Partners (JVP) in charge of sale of PURE Units stopped their sales activities in anticipation of full project funding.
Read full ‘’Founding Members’’ Letter
By July 2013 it had leaked that PURE Beach Resort was reported to be having “funding challenges”.
On December 16, 2013 this story appeared in the Nation.
Read full Hunt for funds article.
But now, almost three years later, in September 2016 Minister of Tourism Richard Sealy and Chief Executive Officer of the Barbados Tourism Investment Inc (BTI), Stuart Layne are still including this private sector development at Foul Bay in their “optimistic” (or is that concocted) projections.
Posing as a potential buyer of one of the fractional ownership units of PURE Beach Resort. on September 21, 2016, DD went to the Pure Beach Resort & Spa Toronto (Markham) business address to enquire about the status of the project and to ask for sales brochures or other information.
There was no one representing PB at the shared office; but another person, who was somewhat familiar with the PB project, did speak to me.
There were no sales brochures or other printed material available..
When I asked about Ecoterra International Corp, and Directors Gary Walker and Mark Purai, he said Walker and Purai are no longer involved, and that Ecoterra is not operating.
He said that the person heading PURE Beach is Sang Park, who was was out of the country – in Europe or China – looking for money to fund the project. Park was the MC in the video (above) of the groundbreaking ceremony.
The website of the New Brunswick Securities Commission contains a 2008 Settlement Agreement in the matter of Sang H. Park. Under the Agreement Sang Park was banned from participating in capital markets for ten years. for failure to provide sufficient information to New Brunswick residents who were investing in, or who were considering investing in, the securities he was promoting.
BUT, he is permitted by GOB to sell foreign investors a piece uh de rock, i.e. PURE Beach Resort and Spa.
The person DD spoke to, who said he was an original investor, did not not recommend buying into PB, unless he is prepared the to wait a long time to get my money back. He said that PB would pay me 8% interest for a loan (to build the project).
Based on his due diligence, DD believes that the only shovels that will be turned for this project at Foul Bay, are those used by Attorney General Adriel Brathwaite and the PURE Beach team at the 2011 groundbreaking ceremony.
The owners/promoters/developers of PURE Beach did not have money to build it when they came to Barbados in 2008 (when Barbados sovereign risk was investment grade), nor in 2011 when they broke ground, and do not have it now. Surely after several downgrades, including the September 23, 2016, S&P downgrade, they will not be able to find the funding, even from Barbados’ usual source of project funding,China.
Who do Sealy and Layne think they they are kidding with their lists of “planned developments”? IMF? CDB? Moody’s? S&P? Foreign Investors?
They are only kidding themselves, and the voters of who are looking for the jobs in the “planned developments” that will never happen.
It is time for Sealy (or Brathwaite, or Stuart) to come clean and tell the truth – that PURE Beach Resort & Spa is not going to happen.