#TheBahamas, April 27, 2021 – This summer, hundreds and perhaps thousands of Bahamian businesses will witness a major transformational event and play a significant and active role in it. The Grand Bahama Port Authority, Limited (GBPA) is pleased to advise that, on Saturday, June 12, 2021, Royal Caribbean Cruise Line’s (RCCL) Adventure of the Seas will set sail from the Port of Nassau as the first and largest cruise vessel to homeport in The Bahamas, making its inaugural voyage of an all-Bahamian Island cruise itinerary.
Even more impressive is the collaborative efforts between numerous government agencies, working with RCCL and private sector entities, to ensure the participation of Bahamian business owners in this historical landmark event.
“The return of cruise lines marks a red-letter day for the country,” stated Ian Rolle, President of the GBPA. “Not only are we welcoming cruise vessels back to our shores after more than a year of lockdowns, but also enabling tremendous new opportunities for businesses of all sizes across the archipelago to participate in such a massive provisioning project. I’m certain it is a venture many of our business leaders have dreamed of for decades.”
Whilst RCCL will homeport from the Port of Nassau, refueling and provisioning will be done in Freeport for a period of six months, beginning in June. This inaugural voyage is the result of extensive discussions between the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM), the Ministry of Tourism (MoT), the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries (MoAF), the GBPA, the Grand Bahama Chamber of Commerce (GBCC), along with the Grand Bahama Island Tourism Board, ensuring that businesses of all sizes across Grand Bahama have an opportunity to benefit.
“What has been accomplished on behalf of the Bahamian people is an extraordinary achievement, and only possible through extensive collaboration between the Government of The Bahamas, NGOs and private sector organization,” added Mr. Rolle. “All efforts are to be applauded.”.
According to Mick Holding, representative for the GBCC, the RCCL homeporting project is an ideal opportunity for businesses throughout the country, especially in Grand Bahama, to rebuild our economies post-COVID.
“Many businesses in Grand Bahama have suffered tremendous losses since Hurricane Dorian and continue to face challenges through this time of COVID. The RCCL homeporting project presents a chance for our community of businesses to rebound in our local economy and embrace a new, international client opportunity.” Holding explained.
Partners for the RCCL homeporting project have planned a Zoom meeting for all Grand Bahama businesses on Monday, April 26, 2021 beginning at 1:00 p.m. Representatives from the RCCL, OPM, MoT, MoAF, and GBCC will join the GBPA in answering questions regarding the homeporting project and provide details on how businesses can register, the essential requirements to participate and much more. Persons interested in attending the zoom meeting can visit the http://bit.ly/homeportgb to register and receive login details.
The Ministry of Tourism, Investments & Aviation on Visitor Arrivals
#TheBahamas, January 30, 2023 – The Ministry of Tourism is extremely excited to announce that visitor arrivals to The Bahamas eclipsed seven million in 2022, signaling a return to pre-pandemic tourism numbers.
In total 7,000,706 visitors came to The Bahamas in 2022.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Tourism, Investments, and Aviation Chester Cooper praised The Bahamas’ performance and the work put in by industry professionals across the board.
“The fact that we have exceeded expectations and attracted more than 7 million visitors to our country in 2022, something only done once before in a single year was no accident,” he said.
“Countless stakeholders in the Bahamian tourism industry, including our international partners, worked tirelessly to achieve this. We sought to strengthen relationships to open new air routes. We sought to make travel to The Bahamas easier, more accessible, and affordable and took the message that we were open for business during our Missions and provided insight on our wonderful offerings to the world.”
“According to statistics the second half of 2022 outperformed the second half of 2019,” he said. In 2022, 1,470,244 visitors came to our shores by air; another 5,530,462 visitors arrived by sea.
Nassau and Grand Bahama remained our most popular destinations by air, while Nassau and The Berry Islands remained our most popular destinations by sea. Foreign air and sea arrivals for 2022 were up by 233 percent over the same period in 2021 and just 3.4 percent shy of record arrivals in 2019. December 2022 saw total arrivals eclipse 900,000 visitors, more than any month in our history. Cruise arrivals in 2022 increased by nearly 400 percent over 2021 and were less than 1 percent below 2019 cruise arrivals.
Air and cruise arrivals monthly from July to December 2022 surpassed the corresponding month in 2019.
Occupancy rates for 2022 eclipsed occupancy rates for every corresponding month in 2021.
The average daily room rate in 2022 outperformed that category for every corresponding month in 2021. The Bahamas carved out new ground with more than 55 percent of first-time arrivals to The Bahamas, with increases in the United States, Canada, Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Middle East.
DPM Cooper confirmed that the last six months are the strongest The Bahamas has ever seen. He firmly concluded by saying; “What the Ministry of Tourism, Investments, and Aviation are forecasting so far and what forward bookings indicate, is that we are on track to break records in 2023. We don’t see this slowing down anytime soon.”
Mrs. Latia Duncombe, Director General of Tourism added that everyone should understand that tourism is critical to our economy and all Bahamians, even those who do not directly work in the tourism industry, should always seek to lift the industry up.
“We are all in the tourism business in The Bahamas. And it’s a great business to be in. We want to keep our brand fresh and evergreen. And that’s everyone’s job, especially mine. I have a great, hardworking team at our ministry and we have some incredible things in store this year.”
GB’s tourism numbers have returned a significant 80 percent of pre-Dorian, pre-pandemic
#TheBahamas, January 30, 2023 – “The future for tourism looks great and the future for Grand Bahama looks phenomenal,” Minister of Tourism, Aviation and Investments, Chester Cooper told Tourism partners, during a special welcome reception at the Lighthouse Pointe Resort on Friday, January 27, 2023.
UB Statement: Portia M. Smith Building Under Assessment
#The Bahamas, January 27, 2023 – In response to concerns expressed, University of The Bahamas released a notification on Thursday 26th January 2023 that effective immediately the Portia M. Smith Building at the Oakes Field Campus is closed until further notice as a precautionary measure.
Immediate steps have been taken to engage the Ministry of Environmental Health to conduct a thorough assessment of the building. In the interim, personnel assigned to Portia M. Smith have been instructed to work remotely to maintain the continuity of operations. A further communication will be issued once the assessment has been completed as we continue to provide timely updates.
Please be assured that the health, safety, and welfare of members of the University community and the general public are paramount and we are working with urgency to address this matter.
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