Hotel gets green light after cutting height

| 30/08/2019 | 93 Comments
Cayman News Service
The Shores Hotel, West Bay Rd, artist’s rendition

(CNS): The Central Planning Authority has now approved a business hotel on the West Bay Road after the proposed height of the building was cut from ten to seven storeys. The application was made under the name of the Libanon Corporation for The Shores Hotel, and developers are planning a 4-star hotel, still with 129 rooms as proposed with the taller project, as well as pools, restaurants and other amenities. However, the reduced height has not improved the appeal for the project’s neighbours.

With no beachfront, the developers are promoting the project as a business hotel, catering for a market that they say is not well served in Cayman. The project was endorsed by the Department of Tourism as a welcome addition to the existing room stock.

The CPA rejected the original application in March, as they said the project’s “mass and scale” was not in keeping with the area. But despite the continued objections from wealthy condo owners nearby, the CPA has now given the hotel the green light.

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Many of those who had submitted objections attended the CPA meeting this week to air their concerns. In their original objections the neighbours were scathing in their criticisms, suggesting the proposed project was a “monstrosity” that was “cheap and nasty” and would “devalue” surrounding properties and threaten their privacy and tranquility at the “quiet end” of Seven Mile Beach.

The reduction in height had done little to address concerns, as they pointed out it was still the same size and was still going to “be a degradation of the area, and will definitely change the lifestyle we have come to enjoy in Cayman.” With objectors stating that nothing of substance has changed with this revised plan, they said it would still “destroy what has been so special”.

Many of the objectors were particularly concerned about the impact on what they saw as their beaches and the facilities many of the condos have on the beach. Given that the new hotel will have 129 rooms and no beach facilities, they raised concerns that the guests would be trespassing on their facilities and at the very least overcrowding the beach in front of their properties.

One objector also accused the Libanon and their anonymous partners of some “ulterior intent”, and that the application showed disregard for the CPA and the rules, ignored regulations, customs, usages, patterns, and acceptable land-use patterns that would set a precedent for “an atmosphere of anarchy” to prevail where planning is concerned. The objector said this was the type of project that the CPA was there to prevent.

However, the CPA did not prevent it and granted the project planning permission.

See application and objections in the CNS Library


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Category: Business, Construction, development, Local News

Comments (93)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Despite hard core indisputable data many continue to insist that tourism and constructions feed them.
    Bookmark this page to remember that the former contributes only 3 % to the Core Government Total revenues, and the latter – 4%
    https://i0.wp.com/media.caymannewsservice.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/13110048/Core-government-total-revenue-as-at-31-March-2019.png?ssl=1

  2. Anonymous says:

    So 15 -20 years ago I invested my millions in the CI economy, purchased my dream home on SMB and legally settled here….

    CNS: I have posted the rest of this comment here.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Oh this is serious – we need a referendum on this! Let’s get a petition going….

  4. Anonymous says:

    still reading…but can’t find one reasonable argument for objecting to this.
    the hypocrisy of existing condo owners complaing about development is totally laughable.
    at the end of the day it is just pure nimbyism.
    well done to the cpa for faciing them down

    • Anonymous says:

      7:44, One reasonable argument is, Why is a business hotel being built in a part of Seven Mile Beach which is not a business area? Doesn’t this go against the so called “national plan”? The second reasonable argument is why are there not enough parking spaces to accommodate everyone who will be staying and working at the hotel?

      Why does the CPA not ask these questions?

      • Anonymous says:

        you are 100%. this apllication meets all planning and zoning requirements.

        • Anonymous says:

          Does it? Obviously you have never read Plan Cayman which talks about business zones and development on Grand Cayman. How many parking places are required for hotels of a certain size? READ IT. But you won’t read as it does not matter to you as you are a developer. Developers rule.

          • Anonymous says:

            Plan Cayman is not a Law.

            • Anonymous says:

              It might not be a law but closest thing we have to some sort of plan for Grand Cayman.

              Why bother spending millions having development plans if nothing is ever followed.

              The answer is that developers rule and they get whatever they want. CIG plans be damned. Sad but true. Ultimately they will destroy what brought most people here in the first place.

    • Anonymous says:

      7:44, Wait until Dart tries to build a 50 storey building a block from where you live. Put money on it, you will be one of the first to become a NIMBY.

  5. Anonymous says:

    I have a conflict of interest here. When developers build, my family gets to eat. Sorry, not sorry 7MB condo owners. Bet you didn’t mind when your properly was developed did you.

    • Anonymous says:

      So let’s just concrete over all of Grand Cayman so you and your family can eat.

      Who gives a damn about the quality of life on this island.

      • Anonymous says:

        Ha, the millionaires living part time in their luxury condos on the beach don’t care if the filthy masses go broke so long as their sensibilities are not triggered by what they consider an unsightly project across the street. I can’t see the beach because your monstrosity is blocking the view, but you won’t hear me complain.

    • Anonymous says:

      @at 12:29 pm . When millionaires leave, taking developers with them, you’ll have to learn how to fish to feed yourself.

      • Anonymous says:

        It is not something that is all or nothing. A place can still have development but sustainable development. The majority of developers only think in terms of short term profits. Maximize profits and to hell with the quality of life.

        I would like to see on a public platform Kenneth Dart’s view that a 50 storey building on Seven Mile Beach is going to improve the quality of our life.

      • Anonymous says:

        At least we were happier with our self respect intact.

      • Anonymous says:

        6:51, Problem is that by the time developers leave there will be fish large enough to eat due to overfishing today,

  6. Anonymous says:

    These contractors don’t care about the environment or keeping what’s left of the old Cayman. They care about putting up as many structures as quick as possible, making as much money as quick as possible & then they will leave after the island is destroyed & they are wealthy.

    • Anonymous says:

      Builders/Developers build and develop, not their fault. There is a complete failure of government to have any vision and put controls in place. I have been here long enough to remember Vision 2008, where is it now?

      • Anonymous says:

        Yes, but they need land to put their developments on. Since, as you say, they’re developers and they have to make developments to make money, that means they have to buy up land. If the number of projects they will do is unlimited because they’ll develop as long as they can to make money, the amount of land they buy is also unlimited. Ergo, eventually there is no land left undeveloped. That is what automatically happens if you do not control the industry through laws that aim to achieve an attractive built environment. Our laws are woefully out of date and underpowered, and of course, there is no effort to change them because it would upset too many wealthy people’s apple carts and plans (sorry, ‘interfere with their property rights’).

  7. Anonymous says:

    So if this is a business hotel why isn’t it located near businesses at Camana Bay, downtown or near the airport? So much for Plan Cayman!

    • Anonymous says:

      ha…island mentality.
      it is located within 10 minutes of all those places.

      • Anonymous says:

        But the new hotel is not being built in the business area. I guess Plan Cayman has already been thrown out. So much for a national plan for development. Means nothing in Grand Cayman.

        • Anonymous says:

          there is no such thing as a business area.

          • Anonymous says:

            When there was a plan for development on Grand Cayman. Guess it does not matter.

          • Anonymous says:

            Geez 3:26. Are you stupid or what? Since when was the area where the new hotel is going to be built considered to be a business area?
            People who live on Grand Cayman with reasonable intelligence, know where the business areas are located. The new hotel is not in a business area. Of course, if you are a developer it simply does not matter.

  8. Anonymous says:

    The semi-autonomous CPA Board have no vision or plan for Cayman. Nothing is sacred, and the proposed concept doesn’t needn’t even make sense (ie. approving tunnels for a hotel plan to be sketched later). More people need to attend these meetings, see what goes on, witness who of the panel do all the talking, and then try to reconcile the actual outcome, with the audio minutes of the meetings you attended.

    • Anonymous says:

      I suspect it does not make sense to you because your economic interests are aligned with developers. Why does it not make sense to only allow buildings to 10 storeys?
      Bet you want 50 storey buildings. Why do we need business hotels in areas which are clearly not business areas but residential / tourism areas.

      Developers hate plans because they act as impediments for them to maximize their profits.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Such a shame. Some call it progress- I call it too much cement. Looks harsh- unwelcoming- City lifestyle.

  10. Anon says:

    Wait until the tourists get lost in West Bay as that is the only Shores us Caymanians know & that us where they’ll be directed if they ask for directions.

  11. Anonymous says:

    So millionaire condo owners on 7-mile beach don’t want a hotel being built next to them?! What the hell are you doing on 7-mile beach then, don’t you know this is Cayman’s primary tourism area zoned for high density commercial and hotels!
    Here is an idea, if you don’t want anything built on the land next to you, BUY THE LAND! Otherwise, buy a house in a low density residential neighborhood.

  12. Anonymous says:

    All you cry babies need to hit the airport and leave. We need these developers and so happy Chairman Thompson & assistant chairman Watler know that and they do not crumble from all these whining wind bags! CPA please keep up the good work!

    • Anonymous says:

      5:48, We sure as hell don’t need a 50 storey building on Grand Cayman. Certain you have a conflict of interest as that is why you are in bed with the developers.

    • Anonymous says:

      They might as well follow your advice and leave your toxic wasteland with its toxic people.

    • Anonymous says:

      @at 5:48 pm . LOL! You are an idiot. When “cry babies” leave, they’ll take their money with them. With no buyers, developers won’t build and you’ll be left with very few options how to support yourself. Might as well learn how to eat chlorpyrifos iguanas.

  13. Anonymous says:

    I guess the condos owners will now have to resort to running the stray tourist off the beach the way Caymanians have been treated for years. Not nice!

  14. Soldier Crab says:

    West Bay Road is already a mess, from The Wharf all the way to West Bay Fire Station; why anyone would want to stay or live there I can’t imagine. Might as well be in Miami Beach.

  15. Anonymous says:

    It’s only a matter of time before the owners of these older, outdated properties sell out to another developer anyway, a la Lacovia. What’s good for the goose is good for the gander…

  16. Anonymous says:

    Looks like the next Sleep Inn

    • Anonymous says:

      The gardens look nice but the building looks like a container building – What a hot mess!! Is that the best they could do?

  17. Anonymous says:

    Disgusting. This is the key problem with Planning right now. The CPA has to give reasons for its decisions and if a developer comes back with answers to the reasons for a rejection the CPA then has to approve it. In practice that means money, ever adaptable, always gets its way. Our Planning laws need to be fortified so that NO means NO! I hope the owners fight this to the bitter end.

    • Anonymous says:

      Land is zoned Hotel/Tourism. Application consistent with zoning and regulations. The planning laws are being obeyed, so what are you all complaining about ?
      Well done CPA.

      • Anonymous says:

        Yeah 8:50, certain all the zoning and regulations will be obeyed when they approve for Dart the 50 storey building next year for Seven Mile Beach. You are either a fool, hopelessly naive, or totally in bed with the developers on island. I suspect the latter.

        • Anonymous says:

          Thank you 8.50, I am none of those things, and insulting a poster you don’t agree with, does not change the facts.

          • Anonymous says:

            The facts are that planning rules are consistently being disobeyed on Grand Cayman as developers rule here. Can’t believe you don’t know that. That is not an insult, but simple fact that anyone who has lived on island a while knows.

            • Anonymous says:

              Not discussing all other buildings all over the Island, referring to this one. There you go again.

              • Anonymous says:

                OK. One simple question on this one building. Is the new hotel in a business area? If you are reasonably smart and have lived on Grand Cayman for a time you will know the answer.

                I am fed up with the intelligence of people being insulted by CPA. I could give you at least a dozen examples where the powers that be approve developments which go against the rules on the Seven Mile Beach Corridor. Problem is that we are a passive people and we accept everything developers feed us.

                Developers rule on Grand Cayman.

        • Anonymous says:

          This is all a game. Dart asks for a 50 storey building. The CPA says no it is too high. Then Dart says we will lower it to a 25 storey building. The CPA says thank you. Build it.
          Just like the Libanon Corporation asking for 10 storeys, getting rejected, then getting approved for 7 storeys.

    • Anonymous says:

      The CPA are a semi-autonomous ministry without any transparency, accountability, conflict checks, or oversight.

  18. Anonymous says:

    Whats so wrong with 10?

    • Anonymous says:

      Arithmophobia might be a joke to you but it’s not amusing to those of us who face it every day!

    • Anonymous says:

      Get ready for 50 next year with Dart. Sure you will like that too.

    • Anonymous says:

      There needs to be no restriction to height because the developers know what the market can take. Let free enterprise handle the market place and stop trying to hinder the development which brings in huge revenue to our country. Thank goodness we have a government that understands this. Bless the Unity Team!

      • Anonymous says:

        Truer words have never been written!

      • Anonymous says:

        Time for a Green Party here. The developers have gone crazy in their pursuit of profit. They need to be brought under control.

        • Anonymous says:

          You are a socialist/communist – get out of Cayman and go back to Venezuela! We do not need more regulation but less so our free enterprise can work.

          • Anonymous says:

            No doubt 9:21 you are a capitalist / developer totally out of control, not giving a damn about your children and their children’s future on this island.

            Time for you to learn about sustainable development that can be done in a free enterprise system, as long as people like you don’t always put profit ahead of everything else.

            We certainly don’t need 50 storey buildings on this island.

      • Anonymous says:

        Yeah that why the Seafire units selling so fast lol

      • Anonymous says:

        2:15, Do you really want to turn this place into the Hong Kong of the Caribbean?
        Of course, being a developer, you don’t give a damn about quality of life and sustainability as the only thing that matters are your profits. Regrettably, the CIG has sold their own island out to their developer friends. Sad but true.

      • Anonymous says:

        2:15, And leave all the garbage and waste disposal problems to the CIG?

        A great deal for developers.

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