Go! Destination MarketingCaribbean Connection

Baha Mar and Beijing Go Big in the Bahamas

by Mark Rogers

Ground was recently broken on Baha Mar, a $3.4 billion complex on Nassau's Cable Beach that is being called the most ambitious megaresort project in the Caribbean. It’s largely being financed and built by the China Export Import Bank and the China State Construction Engineering Corporation. As part of its agreement with the Bahamian government, Baha Mar will import about 7,000 Chinese construction workers. The resort project will also create 4,000 construction jobs for local workers.
When complete, Baha Mar will have four hotels, a golf course, casino, convention center and retail space. Comparisons to the Atlantis resort on Paradise Island are already being made.Baja Mar

"This is a historic day not only for Baha Mar, but for The Bahamas, our partners, and, just as significantly, for the global tourism industry,” said Baha Mar's Chairman and CEO, Sarkis Izmirlian, during the groundbreaking ceremony. “Baha Mar represents an unprecedented alliance of powerhouses in the hospitality, financial and construction industries, and signals a shifting of the sands for the travel industry. Baha Mar also represents the birth of a new generation of destination resorts that will compete on a world scale."

The project was approved by the Bahamian government way back in 2005. Since the initial signing of the contract, Baha Mar Resorts Ltd hit some bumps in the road, including the exit of the initial joint venture partners in the project, and the stalling effects of the downturn in the global economy.

Baha Mar has attracted a selection of respected hotel brands comprising Rosewood Hotels & Resorts, Morgans Hotel Group, Hyatt Hotels & Resorts. There will also be a world-class casino hotel. All told, Baja Mar will have a total of 2,250 rooms within four new hotels.

The numbers are impressive: the mega resort will have a 100,000 square-foot casino, 200,000 square feet of meeting space, and a 50,000 square-foot retail village.

Attractions include a 20-acre Eco Water Park and pool experience, three spas, and an 18-hole Jack Nicklaus Signature Course.

Baja Mar’s opening is scheduled for December 2014, and while it’s being built with Chinese yuan, it’s predicted that dollar-toting U.S. and Canadian guests will be the ones to fill the resort’s coffers.


Baja Mar