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Although Atlantis is concerned about the global economy, the resort's chief says two strong avenues of business are keeping heads above water - group sales and the Latin American market.
George Markantonis, President and Managing Director of Kerzner International Bahamas Ltd., told Guardian Business he expects, by year end, group business will have risen 35 percent compared to 2010.
"The outlook is grim, but I can tell you our bookings are not," he said.
Markantonis said companies in the U.S. and elsewhere have enjoyed improved business over the past year.
That rise in the bottom line has spilled over into corporate trips.
Unlike past years, Atlantis decided to not close it's Beach Tower this summer. The decision has paid off, according to Markantonis.
"It looks like our September occupancy will be 50 percent to 51 percent," he added. "That compares to 33 percent last year."
Another important source of revenue has been the Latin American market.
As part of their push to attract tourists from South America, and harness its exploding middle class, Atlantis has hired representatives in Brazil, Panama, Argentina, Columbia, Mexico and Chile.
Special events, such as concerts, have helped drive interest in The Bahamas.
"There is an excitement there," Markantonis said.
"They have heard about us, but don't know who we are."
Exploring new markets and finding creative sources of revenue have been paramount for the Nassau mega resort. With layoffs in the past and the lingering $2.6 billion restructuring of the mortgage at Kerzner International, corporate clients and Latin American tourists have proven to be an effective boost.
Meanwhile, as the construction of Baha Mar continues, Markantonis said the company, as always, seeks to remain fresh and competitive in the market.
He felt Baha Mar and Atlantis can complement each other, rather than being perceived as rivals.
"A threat is the wrong word," he said.
"What we are talking about is 2015. A lot of water will flow under the bridge between now and 2015."
The main concern, he added, is to ensure there is a sufficient market share for all stakeholders.
Baha Mar will add thousands of luxury hotel rooms to the Bahamian tourism landscape. Markantonis insisted there needed to be a comprehensive plan in place to deal with this rise in rooms, and talks are already underway with the government and Baha Mar to make this happen.
In other words, more work needs to be done to create infrastructure.
"It's one thing to build roads," he said, "what we need is planes."
Palm Cay announced yesterday it has opened reservations for Phase 2 of its much anticipated luxury condominiums, The Anchorage.
The popularity of the 50-unit, 5-phase project that is the first condo offering in the community, situated on 69 acres sprawled along New Providence's calm southeastern shore, has surprised even the developers who are bracing for a flood of new applicants.
"The Palm Cay community started with townhomes and single family lots, planning to add other residential options later," said Palm Cay Director of Sales & Marketing Zack Bonczek. "But we had so many requests for single level condominiums with an open floor plan and an affordable price tag that we advanced the plans and launched Phase 1 of The Anchorage ahead of schedule. It was oversubscribed almost immediately."
Bonczek believes the product led to sales exceeding expectation and hopes Phase 2 follows suit. Phase 1 reservations were oversubscribed with 15 prospective buyers vying for 12 residences. Construction is now fully underway on those units. Phase 2 will consist of eight single level units.
"The product is unique - a 3-bedroom, 2-bath, 1,476 square foot residence, including terrace, in a secure waterfront community with marina, restaurant, tennis courts, pools, and more for $359,000 pre-construction. I don't think there is anything that can compare to it in New Providence." Palm Cay Marina is the closest to Exuma and with 194 slips, is the largest in New Providence in terms of capacity. The community's restaurant, Billfish Grill, is set to open in March with indoor and al fresco dining.
Phase 2 is being sold as the first phase was - on a reservations basis with a reservation call event after the publication of the offer. Reservations accompanied by a fully refundable $5,000 deposit are processed on a first-come, first-served system.
"Our biggest problem now is one we're glad to have - being able to meet demand," said Bonczek.
While The Anchorage is the latest in Palm Cay's offerings, its success mirrors other facets of the community's sales. Developers reported that more than 80 percent of the single family residential lots have been sold and garden and beachfront townhomes are drawing substantial interest, with garden townhomes appealing largely to a local market and the luxurious Starfish Isle townhomes directly on the beach drawing a cross-section of local and second home buyers.
The high-end Palm Cay development boasts over 1,200 feet of white sand beaches and features a variety of residential options in the secure, family-oriented community.
Nassau, Bahamas - Executives
and Contestants of the Miss Gospel Bahamas Pageant pay courtesy call on
Governor General Sir Arthur Foulkes, on Wednesday, July 6, at
Government House. Seated from left: Ethlyn Hanchell, chief chaperone;
Gerissa Maurice, Miss New Destiny Cathedral; Minalee Hanchell,
executive director; Sir Arthur; Syviann Rahming, reigning queen;
Cedrika Knowles, Miss Life Line Family; and Candace Rolle, Miss Dash
Designer Shoes. Standing from left: Nehemie Louis, Miss V.C.C. Worship;
Amiee Ferguson, Miss Zion South Beach; Andrice Strachan, Miss Bethany
Assembly; Lavette Smith, Miss Lake View Church of God; and Melvin
Seymour, Secretary to the Governor General...
Good Friday without a hot cross bun is akin to a sacrilege, so right about now, bakers around the island are making preparations for next week's run on the sticky treats for fans who don't have the confidence to make their own and those who, quite plainly, won't feel like doing it. Word has it that one of the hottest bakeries with the best buns around is Platinum Pastry Bakery owned by Chef Bernard Bodie.
The man who is known for tweaking his bun offerings every now and then just to keep things hot and deliciously tasty will, this year, offer a whole wheat bun - for the seasonally-spirited health nuts - along with his crowd-pleasing, regular buns. Both will have the signature sugar cross topping.
Bodie anticipates he will have to bake at least 450 dozen buns to satisfy demands, as last year's 300 dozen were not enough to prevent the crowds from beating down his bakery's doors. However, unlike previous years, Bodie will not be taking orders this Easter, in hopes of avoiding past problems with customers who had placed orders requesting more buns at the last minute. This year, customers are free to walk in and purchase as many buns as they want. He guarantees people will want to walk away with more than just a dozen buns for their Good Friday meals, as they're just that good.
"You can try everyone else, but I can guarantee my buns are the best," said the chef. "Our buns are so light that they melt in your mouth."
He promises that anyone who tastes his buns will be back, and first-time patrons will love them so much that they'll already be looking forward to visiting his bakery next year. Encouraging the crowds to try for themselves, Bodie will be offering hot cross bun samples at his bakery on Tuesday and Wednesday.
"I'm the type of person who likes people to be able to try the product before they put their money down, because the proof is definitely in the taste, and if you don't like it you have the option to go somewhere else, but I guarantee they will be back once they've had our buns."
Platinum Pastry Bakery will open at 7 a.m. on Thursday, and will remain open until 8 or 9 p.m. that evening, to accommodate fans of the Easter buns, which will retail for $10 a dozen.
"As long as the people keep coming, we will still be here," said the chef.
A veteran of the pastry industry, Bodie worked in the kitchens of the hospitality sector for years before opening Platinum Pastry Bakery, six years ago. Since opening his bakery, his skills have made him known for swoon-worthy sweet and savory treats, such as his famous conch patties; "Off Da Chain" cake which he says people have to see to believe; "Sex on Da Beach" cake, which he says tastes just like the drink; the aptly named "Bodie" cake, a three-layer, red velvet, chocolate and vanilla concoction; and, of course, his hot cross buns. They're cakes he has developed in the last year and which have become top sellers for Platinum Pastry as well.
To try his hot cross buns or any of his best selling cakes, visit Platinum Pastry Bakery on Faith Avenue South (14th building on the left after crossing over Carmichael Road).
Saturday 23rd March 2013 7:40 AM
2013 Great Abaco Family Fitness Weekend: Sprint Triathlon "This is our second year for the event, and the support from the community has been wonderful. We have a lot of prizes to give out and this year we have started early on promotion. To date we are far ahead of where we were last year in terms of registrations numbers, and we still have about 7 weeks left till the event," said Lee McCoy, managing director. "We have been advertising locally and abroad and the response has been positive, with registrations already in from Abaco, Nassau, Freeport, Florida, South Carolina, Illinois, Virginia and California to name a few. So far it looks like the women's sprint triathlon will be a hotly contested event, and I'm excited to see the level of competition and camaraderie that will take place throughout the weekend." The 2nd Annual Great Abaco Family Fitness Weekend is almost here! Here are some quick links with pertinent information: Date: Saturday, March 23rd, 2013 Start Time: 7:40 am Venue: Treasure Cay, Abaco The Bahamas Transition: Coco Beach Bar & Grill Parking Lot Distance: 500m Swim 20km (12.4 miles) Bike 5km (3.1 miles) Run Course Information: The swim will be in the same location as the 1 Mile Open Water Swim. The transition area (both T1 and T2) will be the parking lot of the Coco Beach Bar & Grill. The bike course will take place within Treasure Cay and along the SC Bootle Highway. The run course will be within the boundaries of Treasure Cay. Teams/Relays are allowed for this course. Registration: Registration for this event can be purchased as part of the Weekend Pass or can be purchased individually. Please see the registration details for more information. Click HERE to view 2012 Results & Photos. Click HERE to view their website.
A man was airlifted to a South Florida hospital yesterday after being bitten by a shark off West End, Grand Bahama.
The United States Coast Guard said Jim Abernethy, 55, was on a diving excursion with the commercial diving vessel ‘Shear Water’ when he was bitten on the arm. The incident occurred 18 miles north of West End, the Coast Guard said.
Abernethy’s family-owned business (Jim Abernethy's Scuba Adventures) operates scuba dive charters from West Palm Beach, Florida, according to the company’s website.
A Coast Guard MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew from Air Station Clearwater, Florida, deployed in support of Operation Bahamas Turks and Caicos (OPBAT) locate ...
For the rest of the year, City Market will have just three locations in operation in The Bahamas, with the supermarket chain declaring the temporary closure of two locations in New Providence and the permanent closure of two properties in Grand Bahama.
The much-anticipated announcement - an exclusive to Guardian Business - will have major effects on consumers, distributors and
hundreds of employees
at several locations.
The staff at these four locations will be "allocated" to the stores remaining open.
"City Market announces the temporary closure of its South Beach and Sea Grapes Stores in New Providence and the permanent closure of its Downtown Store in Freeport, Grand Bahama and Eight Mile Rock Store in Grand Bahama," company said in a statement.
"The position takes effect at midnight Wednesday, September 14th 2011."
City Market added that the stores slated for renovation will be addressing "infrastructural issues and the many challenges that have plagued the refrigeration system and other equipment".
The work includes a "complete overhaul", and South Beach and Sea Grapes Stores are not expected to reopen before the end of the year.
With the permanent closure of the Grand Bahama stores, and the temporary closure of the New Providence locations, only three stores will be in operation for the forseeable future.
The company told Guardian Business that employees received calls telling them to no come into work today.
Meanwhile, City Markets in Lucaya, Grand Bahama will be converting to a 24-hour store, the statement added, in keeping with the New Providence formats.
Last month, Bahamas Supermarkets Limited - the parent company of City Markets - announced the closure of its Lyford Cay and Rosetta Street stores effective August 2. At its peak, City Markets had eight locations in Nassau and three in Grand Bahama.
The announcement by City Markets follows an intense week of speculation by both the business community and workers at the store.
Bahamas Commercial Stores, Supermarket and Warehouse Workers Union expressed extreme displeasure confusion regarding the fate of two City Markets outlets in New Providence, fearing closure could cause mass employment or severely reduced hours and wages.
Some local media outlets reported that the union received a fix from Mark Finlayson - the head of Trans-Island Traders and the majority stakeholder of City Markets - announcing the closure of the South Beach and Seagrapes Shopping Centre stores.
Since then, members of the union complained that Finlayson was not properly communicating with workers, and even threatened to take their case to the government and labor authorities.
For now, the matter seems to be resolved, although aftershocks of the announcement are expected to be felt for a long time to come.
Direct ferry service from the US to Bimini will miss its summer launch goal, but the necessary dredging project that would allow the ferry to access the island's government dock is now gearing-up.
Leslie Bethel, president of tourism and travel consultancy firm Notarc Management Group, told Guardian Business yesterday that stakeholders in the ferry project are investing several million dollars in the dredging project. A part of the management team assisting with the coordination of the ferry, Bethel said that while delays have hindered progress, Bimini - and its neighbor Grand Bahama - could have the additional access soon.
"The dredge work in Bimini is in the mobilization stage," Bethel said. "Balaeria is also progressing with its plans to launch ferry service into Freeport and Bimini within the next few months."
Balaeria Ferries will be the operator of the Balaeria Bahamas Express - the ferry lined up to service Bimini and possibly Freeport, Grand Bahama. Bethel said that the service into Freeport was looking "very strong". The ferry could accommodate up to 240 passengers and 80 vehicles per trip, according to an earlier press release from the company. With initial plans to operate excursion every day except Wendesdays, it translates into potentially ten of thousands of additional passengers annually accessing islands serviced by the ferry.
Bill Lee, general manager at Bimini Bay, the largest resort, marina and private residence development on the island, told Guardian Business that with the dredging "imminent", he's looking forward to the ferry service being up-and-running by the end of the year. Despite its geographical proximity to the US - just 48 nautical miles off the coast of South Florida - the ability of potential guests to access Bimini proves a challenge for all industry participants there.
"The developers do have an interest in creating more access to the resort," Lee said, referring to the resort's developers and initial management team - the Capo Group. "It's really why Bimini Bay and all the resorts on the island are underutilized assets. It's very difficult to get here - airfare is pricey."
Initial plans were for the ferry service into Bimini to launch in March, with subsequent postponements to April, and then the summer.
This year, however, Bimini has seen a number of new avenues open to bring more tourists to the island. The seaplane terminal is now active again, with Lee reporting that four seaplane companies now fly into the island from Watson Island off Miami Beach. In August, IBC Travel announced an expansion of service into Bimini with daily flights, including afternoon departures. The late departures were expected to increase the amount of visitors who could connect from other flights to get into Bimini.
The dredging of the channel that allows vessels to access the Government Dock in Alice Town, Bimini, is also an important feature to build access other boaters have to the island, according to Lee.
"We have the largest marina in The Bahamas here, but many of the vessels that could fill this marina up can't make it through the channel," Lee said, noting that any vessel over 80 feet in length would be unable to get in.
The Atlantis Resort and the Grand Bahama Yacht Club & Port Lucaya Marina also vie for the title of "largest" marina in The Bahamas, but regardless as to who has the most yacht slips, being able to facilitate larger yachts bodes will boost tourism in Bimini. Another marina on the island, the Bimini Big Game Club, would also be able to facilitate larger vessels once the dredging is complete.
Lee said that he has recently met with new management of Continental/Gulfstream Airlines in Fort Lauderdale. They will be offering special walk-on rates to Bimini for Bahamians, based on space availability, he said.
"We are doing all of that to get little Bimini on the map," Lee said. "We're getting there. I'm pretty happy with it."
Though the Boundaries Commission has made no final decisions, The Nassau Guardian understands that at least four of the proposed 23 constituencies on New Providence will have new names, while at least five existing constituencies will be folded into the redrawn boundaries of constituencies with existing names.
As it regards the Family Islands, Ragged Island, which is currently joined with Long Island, will be placed with Exuma for the creation of a new constituency.
In New Providence, the proposed 'Constituency 1', will reportedly be named Adelaide, reflecting the name of a similarly drawn constituency in 2002.
As proposed, Adelaide would be comprised of six polling divisions (and a portion of a seventh) from Golden Isles and four from Clifton.
As previously reported, it is proposed that the Clifton constituency will be no more, with the majority of its polling divisions being folded into Killarney (Constituency 12).
The proposed 'Constituency 16' will reportedly be named Nassau Village.
As it stands, that constituency would be comprised of seven polling divisions from Sea Breeze and seven polling divisions from Kennedy.
It is proposed that Kennedy will be no more, with its six other polling divisions being placed in what will become the newly drawn Bamboo Town constituency.
The proposed 'Constituency 17', which has eight polling divisions from Blue Hills, will also have a new name.
It was unclear what that name could be up to press time, but based on the system the government is using, the name would likely begin with the letter N, O, or P.
Under the current proposal, no constituency would be named Blue Hills.
The proposed 'Constituency 21' will reportedly be called St. Ambrose, named after the Anglican church that sits on the corner of Carmichael and Gladstone Roads within the constituency.
As it stands, the proposed St. Ambrose would include four polling divisions from Golden Isles, five from Blue Hills and two from South Beach.
It has also been proposed that the constituency of St. Thomas More will be no more, with 12 of its polling divisions being folded into what will become Montagu (Constituency 14), and its remaining four polling divisions being folded into what will be redrawn as Farm Road.
The Guardian also understands that either Lucaya or Eight Mile Rock will be no more when the commission completes its work.
The other constituencies on Grand Bahama will still be named High Rock, Pineridge, Marco City and West End & Bimini.
An analysis of the proposal put forward by the government appears to lump many areas in New Providence that overwhelmingly supported the Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) in the 2007 general election into fewer constituencies.
The PLP is reportedly hoping to combat this strategy by heavy campaigning in polling divisions where the Free National Movement (FNM) won by a slim majority in the last election.
The PLP is reportedly hoping that it can get enough voters to swing its way in order to upset some of the seats the FNM won in the last election like Sea Breeze, Bamboo Town (now in the hands of the Democratic National Alliance, and a contest in which the PLP did not run a candidate in 2007).
The PLP also reportedly believes it has a good chance of capturing the Adelaide seat when elections are held.
The Nassau Guardian understands that the Boundaries Commission will meet again on Wednesday with a view of completing its report by Friday.
By LARRY SMITH
THREE interesting environmental projects are in the works that could have a big impact on our landscapes and lifestyles - at the eastern, western and southern extremities of Nassau.
They are the proposed redevelopment of the 18-acre Botanical Gardens at Chippingham, the multi-million-dollar reorganisation and restoration of the derelict Montagu foreshore, and the possible creation of a model Bahamian township on 250 acres of undeveloped land at South Beach.
SOUTH BEACH TOWNSHIP
A public tender to design the township was won late last year by Nassau architects Alexiou & Associates, who linked up with TSW & Associates of Atlanta, a leading New Urbanist design firm. Lione ...
The Ministry of Tourism has announced a reduction in the price of tickets for the HBCUX football game at Thomas A. Robinson this weekend.
The tickets for the game have now been reduced to $10, $20 and $50. General admission is now at $10, while platinum tickets are just $50.
HBCUX, an American football game, is being held on September 12-14 at the Thomas A. Robinson Stadium.
Central State University (CSU) and the Texas Southern University (TSU), two historically black colleges, will square off in the first college football game ever held in The Bahamas.
Sports Tourism General Manager Virginia Kelly said fans would appreciate the dropped prices.
"We want people to know that this is their chance to see an official NCAA game. This is something you don't want to miss and so get your tickets at these incredible prices," she said.
Thousands of persons, including celebrities, sports legends, football players and fans, are expected to attend the weekend festivities being hosted by the Ministry of Tourism and HBCUX Network, a new digital media network formed to showcase the unique and diverse experience at historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs).
The planned activities include a NCAA Division One Football game between Central State University (CSU) and Texas Southern University (TSU) and a star studded tailgate concert featuring The Bahamas' hottest recording artists as well as other internationally known Caribbean and American soca, calypso, hip hop and R&B musicians.
CSU's Invincible Marching Marauders band and TSU's, Ocean of Soul band and some of The Bahamas' award-winning bands will compete in a "battle of the bands" contest, while a freestyle Greek step show will culminate the tailgate experience.
Additionally, one of the activities surrounding the HBCUX Football Classic is the College Fair and Empowerment Workshop scheduled for Friday, September 12, 1-3 p.m., at the Melia Nassau Resort Hotel , Cable Beach.
Central State University and Texas State University along with The College of The Bahamas and Bahamas Technical and Vocational Institute will be on-hand to disseminate information regarding attendance at their respective institutions. CSU and TSU have each donated three full four-year scholarships, inclusive of tuition, room and board, to their respective universities. The Thurgood Marshall Scholarship Fund Foundation will also be on-hand.
High school students, particularly 11th graders, are encouraged to come and participate in this opportunity to hear about attending these institutions of higher learning.
Freeport, Bahamas -
We are OPEN for LUNCH! Come
in and enjoy our waterside South-Beach style atmosphere. Perfect for
the business lunch meeting or a gathering with the girlfriends. Dine
inside in our cool a/c or outside in the breeze.
Flying Fish offers
LUNCH Monday through Friday from 11:30am to 2:30pm.
Mixing traditional and modernist cuisine techniques,
will certainly offer you something you've never had before.
City Market and the union representing the food store chain's employees announced yesterday that they have come to an agreement over how those workers will be handled as the company restructures its operations.
Members of the newly elected executive team of the Bahamas Commercial Stores Supermarket & Warehouse Workers Union (BCSS & WWU) met this week with officials of Bahamas Supermarkets Limited (BSL), which owns the City Market stores.
A joint press statement suggested that executive management is seeking to repair and re-open the South Beach and Sea Grape City Market locations that were recently closed and return their staff to regular working hours as soon as possible.
"Once the objective is achieved as far as our renovations are concerned we expect to absorb those transferred employees and return to a normal shift schedule," BSL President Mark Finlayson said in the press release.
City Market workers claimed recently that now that those two stores have been closed, they have been put on a six days per month schedule, which means they would make a mere $120 per month.
One employee's pay stubb seen by The Nassau Guardian during a recent protest by City Market workers reflects automatic deductions made by her bank, after which she took home just more than $2 for the month.
The staff members who gathered outside the front doors of the Harbour Bay location all agreed that they simply want to be separated from City Market and given their severance pay.
However, BCSS & WWU President Warfield Bain insisted that BSL has not breached the company's industrial agreement with regard to staff's current working hours and the company does not want to let any of its staff go.
"The meeting with Mr. Finlayson, his executive team and counsel cleared the air on a number of matters including recent staff concerns." Bain said.
"Tensions are high and maybe they (City Market employees) are heated because of all the other things that are going on also with other companies, but after we sat down with Mr. Finlayson, we assured him that the union will work with the company to save as many jobs as possible.
"We understand that these are hard times and City Market has been challenged for a number of years. In fact, Mr. Finlayson made it clear that he does not want to let anyone go."
Finlayson suggested in the release that part-time employees have been working on a week-by-week schedule, which he said is being done in other companies including several resorts across the country.
He said September and October are slow months.
The disgruntled City Market workers have also had concerns about the state of their pension fund, which is in the process of being audited.
Finlayson said when the audit is done the employees will know what the state of their pension fund is.
"There will be full disclosure and the chips will fall where they may," Finlayson said. "My hands are clean."
In addition to closing its South Beach and Sea Grapes stores in New Providence for renovations, the company has also closed its downtown Freeport and Eight Mile Rock stores in Grand Bahama permanently.
The Lucaya store is the only remaining City Market store on Grand Bahama and plans are being drafted to convert the store to 24-hour shopping, according to officials.
Bahamas Union of Teachers (BUT) President Belinda Wilson said the union was very concerned that parliamentarians are seeking a review of their salaries.
"As hundreds of teachers wait for millions of dollars to be paid to them for correct salaries, back pay, confirmations and more, the Bahamas Union of Teachers is very concerned after the details of an interim report of the House select committee were revealed by Bain's Town and Grant's Town MP Dr. Bernard Nottage in Parliament," she said in a statement.
Wilson said the union agreed that parliamentarians should be compensated for their work, but questioned the government's priorities.
"What is the priority, people or self," she asked.
"This should not take priority over the small man, teachers and workers of this country who are suffering."
A select committee of Parliament recommended the salaries of members of Parliament be reviewed, noting that MPs have not received an increase in 25 years.
The committee also called for the construction of a new Parliament within this term, an increase in constituency allowances and travel allowances, in addition to the introduction of grants to political parties represented in the House of Assembly.
Nottage, who chaired the committee, presented its report in the House of Assembly on Wednesday.
Members of Parliament are paid $28,000 yearly.
Central Grand Bahama MP Neko Grant, who was also on the committee, has defended the report.
"I know of no profession that anybody would have been in that would have not gotten an increase or a salary review in over 25 years," Grant said.
Democratic National Alliance (DNA) Leader Branville McCartney blasted the government and opposition for seeking a review of salaries and benefits when everyday Bahamians are struggling financially.
McCartney said he was "amazed" and "disheartened" that a parliamentary select committee -- made up of government and opposition members -- recommended the salaries of parliamentarians be reviewed.
Nottage said the report received the unanimous consent of all members of the committee, which included Grant, Fox Hill MP Fred Mitchell, Bamboo Town MP Renward Wells, South Beach MP Cleola Hamilton, St. Anne's MP Hubert Chipman and North Eleuthera MP Theo Neilly.
Global Atlanta: With lush brilliance evident even in watercolor, the green paradise shown in the artist's rendering includes a colorful town square, clean streets speckled with strolling pedestrians and a neighborhood of houses arrayed with neat white shutters.
This vision of a new town in the Bahamas belongs to Tunnell Spangler-Walsh & Associates, an Atlanta-based planning, architecture and landscape architecture firm. TSW was commissioned by the Bahamian government to design South Beach Township on New Providence Island, Bahamas...
The Minister of Labor and Social Development is in close contact with City Market to understand how it may assist workers as unease sets in over the recent store closures.
The Minister, Dion Foulkes, told Guardian Business yesterday he's in daily communication with Mark Finlayson, who along with his family owns 78 percent of the shares in City Market's
holding company Bahamas Supermarkets Limited.
According to Foulkes, the company is trying to hold onto as many staff members as possible.
"My understanding is that Finlayson is attempting to keep employees and reduce the work-week as opposed to layoffs," Foulkes said. "Their main concern is to try to keep as many persons engaged as possible."
Meanwhile, as the Minister lends his support, at least one wholesaler is hoping that City Market will pull through its ongoing challenges and see a return to the business it enjoyed in better times, however.
Vice president of Bahamas Wholesale Agencies, John Robertson, told Guardian Business yesterday that although any loss of business that results from further declines in City Market's business would likely be picked up by other customers, the
chain had been a good customer for years.
"We want to see City Market succeed and are disappointed they are struggling a little now," Robertson said. "We are hoping they can come out of this and expand to where they were."
This newspaper published City Market's announcement Thursday that it was closing four stores - two permanently in Grand Bahama effective midnight Wednesday the 14th, and two temporarily in New Providence for renovations.
Until at least the end of the year, there will only be three City Market locations in operation.
The company said yesterday that it was redirecting staff from its South Beach store to its Cable Beach location. Workers from the Sea Grapes store will join its Harbour Bay location in New Providence. In Grand Bahama, staff formerly working at Eight Mile Rock and Downtown Freeport stores were directed to report to the Lucaya Store, which City Market said would move to the chain's 24-hour format.
No layoffs as a result of the store closures were announced up to press-time. The government was, nevertheless, preparing to assist workers should layoffs ensue, according to the Minister.
"We have put several things in place to help in Grand Bahama, as we did with the layoffs at Our Lucaya, including facilitating and fast tracking the unemployment benefit. We are also facilitating as many as possible to apply for the [National Job and Skills Training Initiative] in Grand Bahama," the Minister said.
The employees converging on the remaining stores likely means drastic weekly reductions in how many hours line-workers are able to log. Barring an investment injection and new store openings, the current scenario may be unsustainable.
Guardian Business asked the question of how long the chain could sustain its current employment levels, but had no response up to press time.
According to the company, the renovations in the Nassau stores include an "overhaul" to fix infrastructural issues and address challenges it says have "plagued" the refrigeration system and other equipment. The company is reporting it does not expect renovations to conclude before the end of the year.
These most recent closures follow the closures of its Lyford Cay and Rosetta Street stores early last month.
At its peak, City Market had eight locations in Nassau and three in Grand Bahama.
Tuesday 1st May 2012 8:00 AM
New Providence locations for the Advanced Poll Tuesday, May 1st, 2012 8am - 6pm Kendal G. L. Isaacs Gymnasium Bain & Grants Town Centreville Englerston Fort Charlotte Fox Hill Golden Gates Marathon Montagu Nassau Village Pinewood South Beach St. Anne’s Mical College of The Bahamas Blocks B & T,Tucker Road Bamboo Town Rm 129C Carmichael Rm 111 Elizabeth Rm 125 Garden Hills Rm 112C Golden Isles Rm 130C Killarney Rm 113C Mt. Moriah Rm 131C Sea Breeze Rm 114C Southern Shores Rm 201A Tall Pines Rm 109 Yamacraw Rm 110C
Sunday 22nd April 2012
Time To Be Announced Under the Distinguished Patronage of Dr. Sandra Dean Patterson of the Bahamas Crisis Center CIA Monet Brings to you Beauties @ Brunch Saturday April 22nd 2012 The Bureau of Women’s Affairs celebrates the 50th Year of Suffrage of Women and the advances made by them up to the 21st century. Cia Monet embraces this opportunity through its brand to bring an awareness of the Movement to women of the Bahamas .We dedicate our 2012 Marketing Campaign to honor and commemorate some of our Great Bahamian Women with a 4 part Series called Beauties @ Brunch which Celebrates Fashion, Sophistication, Professionalism and Poise, by coupling Epic Beauty and Fashion with Premium Venues, Food and Wine. $50.00 red carpet affaif price includes your choice of stuffed Snapper, Cornish Hen or Shrimp/Chicken Alfredo part proceeds to the Bahamas Crisis Centre The venue for Nassau is confirmed at Compass Point Beach Resort It will be hosted by Phyllis Albury Garraway and under the patronage of Mrs. Sandra Dean Patterson with a donation going to The Bahamas Crisis Center. The event will include an option of 3 entrées (fish, shrimp or Cornish hen) plus entry as it is a ticketed Red Carpet Event. The 4 part series launches designer couture pieces from each fashion season: spring, summer-swimsuits, fall and winter .Each event will feature 4 segments to include casual, resort wear, career and social. Patrons are asked to dress to impress as the event will be recorded live and boast several media outlets. As it is a RED CARPET event. There are many ways you can become affiliated with the event i.e. Makeup Artist/Beautician/Nail Technician, D.J, Photographer, Media outlet or a Financial Sponsor. We welcome any suggestions that you may have as to how YOUR Company can mutually benefit while making this event a success. We will have flyers, posters as well as a large media wall for our RED CARPET walk. We will be marketing on Facebook, in newspapers, magazines and radio stations. Sponsorship Opportunities: Small Business Package: (At -home, New Business, Self Starter Programs): $200.00 for your logo placement ONLY on all printed marketing material. Corporate Business Packages: Beginning at $1,000.00 you will have your logo placement on all marketing material, as well as radio ad mentions. Title Sponsorship Package: $2000.00 or more: You will be tagged along with Cia Monet as a Title Sponsor. Your logo will be placed on all marketing material and you will receive 4 free tickets to the event valued at $50 each. We will also consider your location as a box office for event
Funeral Service for Cecil Rodney Anthony Butler, 63, Resident of South Beach Estates, Bougainvilla Blvd, will be held on Saturday 17th, September 2011, at 11am, at Greater Bethel Cathedral, Faith Way, Blue Hill Road South, officiating Diocesan Bishop Ellis Farrington, Bahamas State Council PAW, assisted by other ministers of the gospel, Interment will follow Southern Cemetery, Cowpen Road.
Left to cherish his memory is his loving & devoted wife, Betty Butler of 38 years, 5 daughters, Annette, Shelly, Gloria, Betsy & Tina Butler, 2 sons, Anthony & Rodney Jr. Butler, 17 grandchildren, Kishon, Brenay, Ragenna, T’liyah, Tnaj, Verchea, Vashtie, Dominic, Anthony Jr., Nikita ...
City Market workers were locked out of the Sea Grapes Shopping Plaza location yesterday and told by a security guard to report to the Harbour Bay location for work, several of them told The Nassau Guardian yesterday.
The ire built up as more and more of them reported for work only to find out there was no work to report to at their assigned store.
They said executive management did not let them know that the store would be closing, nor where they should report to yesterday morning.
"They need to inform the employees what they will do with us," said stock clerk Evette Robinson.
"They are not giving us any information on where we are heading, no meeting, nothing. It's not fair to us because we're being pushed around and up and down like yoyos.
"We're supposed to report to another store just by word (of mouth), nothing official from management."
However, management sent an official statement to the press Wednesday, stating that the South Beach and Sea Grapes Shopping Plaza stores would be closing temporarily.
The release also announced that City Market's stores in Freeport and Eight Mile Rock would be closing permanently.
"The position takes effect at midnight Wednesday, September 14, 2011," the release said.
"At the stores slated for renovation the company will be addressing infrastructure issues and the many challenges that have plagued the refrigeration system and other equipment.
"The renovations which have been described as a complete overhaul are not expected to conclude before the end of the year.
"City Market will also be converting the Lucayan, Grand Bahama, location to a 24-hour store in keeping with its New Providence 24-hour formats."
The release also gave directives for City Market's staff to report to other City Market locations. Those were the same directives staff told The Guardian they were not given personally by City Market executives.
"The staff complement at these stores have been redirected as follows: South Beach staff are to report to the Cable Beach store; Sea Grapes staff to the Harbour Bay store and staff at the Eight Mile Rock and downtown Freeport stores to the Lucaya store," the statement said.
"City Market appreciates the patience of its customers in this effort."
However, it is the staff who say they have run out of patience with the new owners of City Market. Bahamian businessman Mark Finlayson and other investors bought out the food store chain earlier this year.
Stock clerk for City Market's South Beach location Alberta Rahming said she simply wants management to give her the monies that are due to her so she can be done with the company. She said the management has strung the employees along for too long with no regard for them.
"He (Finlayson) hasn't earned my respect so I'm not giving it," she said. "We just want to move on, we're tired. We just want to move on, we want to go; enough is enough."
City Market now has only two locations left open in New Providence: Cable Beach and Harbour Bay.
Dairy and Frozen Food manager Kendra Bodie insisted employees wanted to hear from management yesterday.
"I feel as if we the employees have been slighted by our employers," she said.
"The employees here are hard working [and] dedicated. The employees give their heart and soul for the company and in turn get treated like this.
"When will you sit with us and speak with us?"