Mandarin to manage proposed Beach Bay resort

| 27/06/2018 | 42 Comments
Cayman News Service

One previous artist’s rendering of plans for the site

(CNS): The Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group has said it will be managing the new resort in Beach Bay, Bodden Town, that has been in the works for years. A long-promised project at St James Point being developed by Melkonian Capital Management and RAL Development Services, the resort will include a 100-bed hotel and 87 residences branded by the Asia-based hotel chain. Following a press release announcing the chain’s involvement, Tourism Minister Moses Kirkconnell told the Legislative Assembly that he was “delighted” by the “exciting” news and the arrival of another global recognised brand.

Kirkconnell said it would allow the Cayman Islands to tap into new market sectors and promised to bring many benefits to the islands, including creating jobs. He said government had “worked extremely hard in tourism” and he was pleased with the current situation. The minister said it was “a milestone day for the eastern districts” and that his ministry had been asking the developers of this long-planned proposed hotel to look for a five-star brand. 

This will be the first five-star hotel not on Seven Mile Beach but Kirkconnell said he looked forward to more leading brand hotels focused on the eastern districts as well as the Sister Islands coming to Cayman.

This particular project has been on the cards for almost a decade and has been the subject of numerous potential resort designs but there has never been a start date for any of them. But as he made the announcement following the press release, Kirkconnell seemed convinced that this time things were going to happen. He said that the coastal works were already ongoing at the site and he was hoping to announce the groundbreaking of the actual building very soon as the hotel, according to the Mandarin, would be opened in 2021. The minister was, however, unable to tell members what new plans there were for the road expansion, which had originally been intended to support the development.

The resort will sit on 67 acres with the usual amenities in a five-star hotel, including swimming pools, spa and fitness centre, as well as five restaurants and bars with its own farm to provide a ‘farm to table’ dining experience.

James Riley, Group Chief Executive of Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group, said the developer had “assembled a spectacular site and has the long-term vision to create a unique resort experience”.

Ryan Melkonian, the managing partner of the owning firm, said they were creating “a very special destination that we expect will be among the best in the Caribbean”.

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Category: Business, Local News, Tourism

Comments (42)

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  1. Bob says:

    Do not, I repeat, do not buy a timeshare. Yes there are people that say they love timeshares but I think they’re just trying to convince themselves that their money wasn’t wasted. This is a binding contract and “owners” do not “own” anything but with the inevitable hurricane that will come you will be responsible for the rebuild. If you want to stay at a timeshare just go to any timeshare Facebook page, Redweek or EBay and rent for what the maintenance fee without paying for the 99 year binding contract. Also note that Cayman is the second most expensive country to live in…in the world




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  2. Anonymous says:

    Since this land is so obviouly not a major hotel site, it gives the Mandarin announcement the definite smell of an investor scam. The Mandarin spa resort at Barefoot Beach site made sense since it had a beautiful stretch of sandy beach with a nearly virgin landscape backdrop. The last fast-talking timeshare saleman to propose a development on this rocky Beach Bay site left dissappointed investors and a rusting crane. It is doubtful that the Mandarin people have visited this site and if so how can they think this makes sense? It is unlikely to happen but there may be people with enough cash who are crazy enough to take the bait.




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  3. Anonymous says:

    The original late 2015 TEN Arquitectos plan for Beach Bay Lands Ltd. (subsidiary of Melkonian) was for a 200 bed hotel with 90 Residential units. That is the impressive design we see associated with this project. Who knows what this will actually look like at half-scale…just sayin’.

    https://www.caribjournal.com/2015/12/09/this-is-the-caribbeans-coolest-new-hotel-project/#




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  4. Anonymous says:

    Some people think this is a great location and with it’s elevation shouldn’t be at as high a risk of flooding like the SMB hotels and properties. It’s got a small cove but is still charming.




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  5. Anonymous says:

    Well this certainly puts a whole different slant on tbe hotel discussion. Orange you glad you heard it here first?




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  6. Anonymous says:

    That’s going to be fun in morning traffic, trying to catch a plane out.
    That road and junction is not capable of handling that traffic.




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  7. Anonymous says:

    Does Mandarin know about the Dump existence? Nothing on this island could be qualified as luxury and 5stars with everything being in the Dump vicinity. Aside from significant detrimental visual impact from various viewpoints, it poisons everything that is above and below. Cancer is the leading cause of death in this country.
    Who in their right mind would invest in real estate here?




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    • Anonymous says:

      Mandarin are not the developer, they are merely the franchise manager once, or if, the construction gets financed and built by boutique hedge fund group Melkonian Capital (6 employees, AUM $156mln). Sadly, it would appear these guys have already resorted to using stock photo from BVI to pretending it’s the Beach Bay location site:

      https://cpp-luxury.com/mandarin-oriental-to-open-luxury-resort-and-residences-on-grand-cayman/

      Once upon a time, Mike Ryan, with an appalling track record, and a searchable history of bankruptcies, acquired the old Holiday Inn and a Ritz Franchise. We recall he still had predictable troubles getting that construction finished over 8 tenuous years. Eventually, the CIG, under McKeeva Bush, had to step in to back-stop the Bank of Scotland loan facility with our public money, in exchange for something.

      Going way way back, to the development of the original Hyatt, it was also a rough ride. Torchinsky had to eek out the closing financing from some trepidacious Canadians via Bay Street brokerage houses.

      DART obviously did not have that problem with the Kimpton.

      Like other reasonable societies, we should, as a matter of Gov’t policy, validate the developers abilities and track records before green-lighting these things and building roads for them with our money. There should be verified minimum capitalization, a milestone timeline, and clearly understood deadlines for completion of each phase. The Caribbean is littered with half-conceived or stalled projects because of bedazzled local officials.




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  8. Anonymous says:

    Isn’t this the third or fourth time over the years that we’ve heard that Mandarin Oriental are coming to Cayman? And to Beach Bay?! Really?! I find this seriously hard to believe.




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    • Yada says:

      I agree it is hard to take these investors serious.Yada yada yada.




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    • Tired a de nonsense says:

      Please 4:13 ya sure you got your cayman locations right. The other time that Mandarin was mentioneed was for Barefoot Beach property in East End not Beach Bay.




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  9. Anonymous says:

    Maybe it happens, maybe not, but here is the Corporate Press Release stating their intensions:

    https://www.mandarinoriental.com/media/press-releases/developments-grand-cayman.aspx




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  10. Anonymous says:

    Check the front of today’s Caymanian Compass you will see the aerial view of costal work already years in progress. Enviromental impact study anyone????




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  11. Anonymous says:

    How can you put a hotel at the level of the Mandarin on a beach like Beach Bay? That is a smelly, rocky, broken, trashy, rocky, barely any sand, rock beach.
    There is NOTHING like SMB on this island where you can walk into a soft, no turtle grassy, cottony, sandy, swimming pool-like water like our 7 mile beach….




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    • Eylül says:

      I guess it won’t see the jet setters and a louche assortment of minor royals, fading sportsmen and old-school film stars..




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    • Anonymous says:

      They will make a beach and dig out the rocks for swimming.




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    • Anonymous says:

      Yall’s gon hate me for dis;
      I wrote the above (8:56am) and should have elaborated.. I sincerely hope it goes forward and is successful. It’s a nice quiet spot with lots of potential. A high end name like Mandarin would be amazing and exciting. (shame about not having the infrastructure to deal with the increased traffic)
      And as another poster later mentioned about not finding a 5 star level of service here.. West Indian people do not like being told what to do nor how to do it. That’s why they don’t do so well with on the job training. To provide the high level of service that places like Mandarin/Four Season/Ritz demand, staff will be required to, for lack of a better word, ‘bow down’ to the guests and to upper level staff/management. These people do not want to start at the bottom. They want to be seen as someone with a position. That’s why all the banks here (among other businesses) provide uniforms. Makes them feel important. I noticed that the day I landed back in late ’89. I found it endearing. Kind of sweet. If that’s what it takes!!
      And everyone wants to feel important, eh! Even me.
      So maybe you can find local staff to provide that level of service if you begin to treat them as if they are important (ask Ritz HR when they started up, what it was like). And really, they are important because without them, be prepared to shell out for work permits for those nationalities that can do the job and don’t mind ‘bowing down’. We know who they are..
      But really, it is not a lovely sandy spot. I’m sure they will be working on removing the icky parts… (like Dart tried at the end of SMB)




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  12. Anonymous says:

    Ahhh the mythical Mandarin mirage. And there’s that pot of gold at the end of the rainbow too!




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  13. "Anonymousir" says:

    more money for politicians …. thats why they allowed foolishness like this …




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  14. Anonymous says:

    I can see one problem with this – to run a five-star hotel you need five-star staff and you won’t find many of them on these islands. My partner spent most of her working life in hotel management and her opinion is that there isn’t one true five-star hotel on Grand Cayman and the way things are going there never will be. It’s the old problem here – people like DoT can’t tell the difference between high end and over-priced. The fact that you’re paying an insane amount of money for a basic hotel room (a week in a standard room at the Kimpton is currently around US$4000) doesn’t mean you’re part of some rich elite – it just means you’ve got more money than sense.

    I almost exclusively use the Hilton group (one name notably absent on these islands!) when travelling in the USA because they offer quality accomodation and service for a fraction of the rip-off hotel rates you find on these islands.




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    • Anonymous says:

      8.00am more people to clog up the island in every capacity!!! We are one big disaster just about to blow.




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    • Eylül says:

      Agree. Can’t go wrong with Hilton.




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    • Anonymous says:

      Hmm while I respect the input of your partner, care to explain how the Ritz Carlton and Kimpton won international awards for being 5 star venues?




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      • Anonymous says:

        Same way realtors win awards?




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      • Anonymous says:

        2:06 Because the ‘awards’ are complete BS? I think you’ll find that R-C and Kimpton actually got AAA Five-Diamond awards and they’re specific to the USA and Caribbean rather than being international. In addition I understand the assessments aren’t exactly conducted covertly so the hotels have plenty of prep time for them.

        The big problem you have with these awards (and not just the AAA ones) is they’re not independently regulated or verified so potentially not just inaccurate but wide open to abuse. I’ve seen places that I wouldn’t set foot in boasting all kinds of accolades they could never possibly justify.

        If someone who has worked in hotel management with some pretty heavy hitters in the industry tells you a hotel isn’t five-star you ignore them at your peril. We visited R-C under the previous management and it was chaotic – they might just have been going through a bad patch but you’d have got better service in any cheap ‘no-tell-motel’ in the USA than at R-C reception that day. The two women on the desk didn’t even speak coherent English.




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        • Anonymous says:

          You forgot the Dump in the RC backyard. This immediately disqualifies RC and all GC hotels for even one star award.




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  15. Anonymous says:

    Yeah good luck with this. The sort of clientele who patronize hotels like this require 1 thing above all else – visibility. They are hyper-narcissists who believe they are one of the elite, the chosen people, the beautiful, the good, the influential. In other words they want to be on 7MB, preening & strutting, instagramming the sh*t out of their blessed lives, screaming ME ME ME in the faces of everyone and anyone, both in person and online.

    So no. This won’t work. It will take a lot more than a brand name and a few fantasmic architectural mockups to attract the 7MB w@nkrs.




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  16. West Bay Premier says:

    Mr. Kirkconnell forgot to mention that mandarin would have a cruise ship pier also .




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  17. D says:

    > coastal works were already ongoing

    What does that actually mean?




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    • Anonymous says:

      11.59pm costal work in progress.. removal of a enormous amount of loose beach rocks – From a year or so ago.. already showing a negative impact of the beaches, in conjunction with the removal of large quanties of beach sand by inconsiderate people. View it for yourselves beaches along the south side of Cayman have been eroded badly for years now.




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  18. Anonymous says:

    classic ppm ‘soon come’ waffle….




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  19. Anonymous says:

    can someone please do an article on all the missed deadlines surrounding this nonsense…..




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  20. Anonymous says:

    wow…i will file this with the other updates from ironwood, cayman enterprise city….etc…..zzzzzzzz




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  21. Anonymous says:

    ????




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  22. Anonymous says:

    This will open just after Ironwood……………………




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  23. im tired says:

    seriously uter b.s.funny manderin pops up again as wasnt a manderin meant to be built at barefoot beach in east end.never happened niether will this




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