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St Vincent and The Grenadines is embarking on its most ambitious tourism project to date – the Royal Mill Hotel Luxury Resort and Residences which is set to be a premier 5-Star private community and contender among luxury resorts in the region.
The single largest private sector tourism investment in the country is being undertaken by A&A Capital.
And Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves expects it to have huge spin-off potential.
“Upwards of 400 families island-wide are expected to benefit directly or indirectly from the hotel. I anticipate a major shift in our tourism economies and wealth creation through direct employment, taxes and National Insurance contributions,” he said.
“Though St Vincent and the Grenadines entered the mass tourism market late, it is evident through other hotels on the island that our country’s product is of excellent stature. Overall, I expect the Royal Mill to be an immense contribution to the people of St Vincent and the Grenadines.”
Currently, the staff base at the construction site is about 70 workers, and that is expected to increase considerably to more than 200 in the coming months. The local job creation from the project ranges from site engineers to foremen, masons, carpenters and other labourers.
The US$60 million Royal Mill Hotel Luxury Resort will comprise 15 independent and private residence homes, while the resort will provide 18 high-rise apartment units and two rooftop penthouse units. The property will house a business centre, a conference/meeting centre, a gym, an aqua centre, an exclusive spa, a pool area and bar, an urban lounge viewing the ocean, a rooftop bar and restaurant and parking for more than 60 vehicles.
The residence portion of the project has an expected completion date of December 2020, while the hotel section is due to be done by mid-2022.
Principal Investor and co-founder of A & A Capital, Alex Lodde said he was happy to see the pace of the new development, and the cooperation and assistance of the St Vincent and the Grenadines Government, and was looking forward to the completion of the project.
CEO and Co-Founder of A&A Capital, Adem Adem, added that he was excited about the Royal Mill Hotel project and looked forward to it benefitting the country.
“I have been visiting St Vincent and the Grenadines for the past 15 years and I never thought I would have seen this day and our dream has come true. I am grateful for the commitment of my team, the support of family and the warm welcome of the people and the leadership of St Vincent and the Grenadines,” he said.
“It is important to note that the most critical aspect of the project for us is ensuring that the people of the country benefit meaningfully from a trickle-down economy and are always safe and secure while employed at the hotel. We see the Royal Mill Hotel spanning generations of St Vincent and the Grenadines.”
He further assured that A&A Capital was strongly committed to and invested in the completion and longevity of the development.
“One of the major proofs of commitment is the levels of employment already realized as well as the importation and purchase of millions of dollars’ worth of major equipment and material, both for construction of the hotel and for use by St Vincent and the Grenadines. We realized the need for heavy-duty equipment on the island and felt that the country can benefit from our equipment resources as well. We have also purchased over 10 million dollars’ worth of integral material which would fulfil the completion of the hotel,” he said.
The Bank of St Vincent and the Grenadines (BOSVG) has given its backing to the project. The bank, through its Managing Director Derry Williams, has acted as a principal collaborator.
“As a bank, we must provide assurances to investors coming into any unknown to take investment risks. From our end, it’s not just about conducting the investor’s transactions effectively but also providing feedback from the banking community, the trajectory of the economy and governing policies. The passion, thoughtfulness and commitment to developing St Vincent and the Grenadines were also very important. A&A Capital has proven, to date, their commitment to the project and seeing it to its absolute fruition and this is truly good news for our country,” Williams said.
Camillo Gonsalves, Minister of Finance and Parliamentary Representative for East St George – the constituency in which the project is located – this is the exact type of tourism that the country is interested in leveraging.
“One which brings people into the island and will realize an entire set of ancillary spin-offs which will benefit the economy. Already, the construction sectors are profiting from the construction phase of the project,” he said.
In addition to the Royal Mill Hotel Development, A&A Capital has acquired the family-owned Grand View Hotel. Renovation works have already started on the 20-room boutique hotel.
“This boutique property will be ideally positioned for tourists, regional travellers, businesses and organizations that wish to host conferences on the island. It will also play host to special events and weddings….Works are progressing rapidly to have the small property ready for guests in April 2020,” Lodde said.