SANDALS OPENS ALL-SUITE HOTEL.
Gordon "Butch" Stewart's Sandals Group has opened a
second hotel in Cuba, a move that will allow the hotel chain to augment its share of Europe's tourism market, and deepen its capacity for
twin-island vacation promotion, reports The Jamaica Observer (Nov. 8,
2002). The soft opening of the 402-suite Sandals Royal Hicacos Resort
& Spa brings to 20 the number of all-inclusive hotels operated by
Sandals and its sister brand, Beaches Resort. Hicacos is located 90
minutes by road from Havana International Airport in the capital city,
and 10 minutes from downtown Varadero, the island's main tourist
resort. Royal Hicacos, as well as the Beaches Varadero -the 350-room
hotel that Sandals has been running in Cuba since Match 1999 - are both
being operated under the terms of an agreement reached with Cubanacan in
1998. Cuibanacan is one of Cuba's largest hotel groups. "The
entry of the Sandals brand to that market will be a catalyst for
accelerated tourism growth in the northern Caribbean," says Dr
Jeffrey Pyne, a director of Sandals.