Silver Beach Resort and Spa, an approved Citizenship by Investment resort development in Dominica, is now part of the world’s largest hotel chain – Marriott International.
The five-star luxury resort, which will debut on Dominica’s picturesque northwest coast, at Picard Beach, has been incorporated into Marriott’s Autograph Collection – a luxury sub-brand of unique hotels unlike any other in the world. The resort is marketed by Silver Beach Development as a valuable choice for individuals seeking to acquire citizenship from the Caribbean island through Dominica’s real estate option.
At the official announcement ceremony on Monday, January 9, 2017, Bojan Kumer, Marriott’s Director for Development of the Caribbean and Latin American, relished in the island’s beauty, calling it one of the most unique islands in the region, and commending Silver Beach for the company’s resolve to position the island as a luxury destination in the Eastern Caribbean.
“We believe that Dominica has so much to offer,” Kumer said of his company’s decision to bring its premium brand to the island. “This hotel could be the gateway to the most memorable experience that no other Caribbean island can offer to our guests.”
Silver Beach Development has long stressed its partnership with some of the best professionals in the field to work in the developmental of its world-class resort – enlisting Arkiplan International, the architects behind Dubai’s world-famous One & Only the Palm Resort to deliver its resort design.
In a similar fashion, the company has contracted Trust Hospitality, a hotel operator with over 25 years of experience delivering hospitality service to hard branded hotels like Marriott and Sheraton, as well as lifestyle, boutique brands.
Director of Trust Hospitality, Michael Register, speaking at the ceremony, expressed his company’s pride for the opportunity to work with Silver Beach and another new Marriott Autograph hotel. As a hotel operator, the company’s prime focus is what Register calls “putting heads in beds.” Given three critical realities, the Director is confident his company can do just that at Silver Beach Resort and Spa.
“I feel very comfortable when I know there are 100 million loyalty members out there that would love to spend a vacation in Dominica. Having the brand Marriott gives prestige to the project, and prestige to the country,” Register said.
Register also went on to say that “a lot of times we get asked in the hotel business, how do you train all these people to be friendly at our hotels? Everybody I’ve met [here] has been helpful, courteous, and I think that is the ingredient for successful services.”
The fact that Silver Beach Resort and Spa is being developed by native Dominicans with an interest in giving back to their country is the third reality which really resonated with the hospitality company. “They’re not some developer from New York that is coming down to make a quick buck and then you might not ever see him again,” said Register. “This is for them, the heart and soul of what they are doing.”
Indeed, the directors of Silver Beach Development, Mr. Alick Lawrence and Dr. Michael Lawrence, brothers, who grew up not far from the proposed site of the resort, have gone on record several times to reiterate their resolve at bringing development to their hometown of Portsmouth, and to infusing much needed jobs into the country’s economy.
“Many of us have greatly benefited from our country Dominica despite its few resources. Growing up as children in Dominica we were blessed with free primary education and relatively inexpensive secondary education, all paid for by the taxes of the people of Dominica. We then received scholarships to pursue studies in universities and colleges overseas that have helped shape our careers and moulded us to be the professionals we are today,” Michael Lawrence said. “Silver Beach Resort is our family’s way of giving back to our beloved Dominica that has invested so much in us.
With Dominica’s tourism industry still developing, Silver Beach Development is aware of the critical role its resort will play in altering the hotel stock on island. “One of the opportunities afforded by the current state of Dominica’s hotel stock is that the developers of hotels under the CBI programme have the ability to define the type of hotel industry for which Dominica will become known,” said Alick Lawrence, the company’s Chief Executive Officer. “This is both an awesome and exciting challenge and responsibility and we at Silver Beach intend on delivering a product and a service which makes an important contribution in that decision.”
Alick Lawrence, who recognises the value of the Marriott brand to his company’s operation, does not however downplay the importance of Dominica’s Citizenship by Investment Programme in firstly creating the opportunity for resorts like Silver Beach Resort and Spa to be developed and secondly creating an environment for them to thrive.
“This project, like the others, will be funded by the CBI programme,” Alick reiterated at the ceremony. “The efforts and activities mentioned above are not by themselves sufficient to achieve success. Success will directly depend on the success of the CBI programme.”
Honourable Roosevelt Skerrit, Prime Minister for Dominica, who participated in the announcement ceremony, lauded Silver Beach’s achievement, saying, “The decision of Marriott to affix its luxury brand to a property in Dominica ought not to be trivialized. It speaks volumes of the high esteem in which Dominica is held by objective thinkers and observers in North America and the international community”
The Prime Minister, who said he viewed the decision by Marriott to invest in Dominica as a vote of confidence in the country, pledged his government’s commitment to doing everything in its power to justify the confidence shown.
The Autograph Collection is one of the fastest growing brands in the hotel industry with more than 100 hotels worldwide – including three completed properties in the Caribbean and four more under contract for completion.
It is part of Marriott International’s portfolio of 30 hotel brands, and benefits from the largest and most recognised loyalty rewardsprogramme in the industry.