The countless issues affecting guests at the Halcyon Hotel could become a thing of the past.
The Government of Antigua and Barbuda is presently in negotiations with the owners of Halcyon to make land available to nationals of the twin island state.
“We are just about to complete a deal with Sunwing … in which we will be leasing them the Halcyon Hotel for 99 years because you know we went to parliament and compulsorily acquired the lease…,” Finance Minister and Prime Minister Gaston Browne said.
We have agreed to make about 5-10 acres of land available within the Halcyon Beach Resort to Antiguans and Barbudans to build accommodation properties,” he continued.
Visitor experience at the Halcyon Hotel has not been well spoken of over the past few years, and especially in recent times.
In fact, a woman named Dianne Ettienne who recently missed her flight and was accommodated at Halycon by LIAT, shared photos with our newsroom that appear to portray the dismal upkeep of the hotel.
The images purport to show worms in a toilet bowl, and Ettienne described customer service at the resort was the worst she had ever experienced.
But now Browne claims to be nearing finalization of a new contract with the owners of the hotel – who also happen to own the soon-to-be-opened Royalton Resort.
He said the idea to engage locals will be “a great investment opportunity for individuals who may probably want to have a beautiful property within a hotel environment. They can also use it maybe a month a year and their family could stay there, enjoy good quality living while at the same time have it as an income property to generate sustainable income.”
In addition, the Finance Minister said he hopes this plan will be met by willing participation, adding that he knows many persons can afford it.
“Let’s say for example they are building rooms at about US $150,000, that’s about EC $400,000. There are many people in Antigua and Barbuda who can buy a condominium unit within a hotel for EC $400,000 and rent it,” he said.
The government hopes to kickstart this project later this year.