At the signing of the Heads of Agreement: Seated from left is Mrs. Danya Parker-Wallace, Assistant Director of Legal Affairs in the Office of the Attorney General; Wendell Major, Secretary to the Cabinet; Christel Sands-Feaste, Legal Counsel for the Cotton Bay project; Sir Baltron Bethel, Senior Policy Advisor to the Prime Minister; and Candia Ferguson, Director of the Bahamas Investment Authority. Standing is Mr. Alinio Azevedo of the Four Seasons Hotel Chain; Deputy Prime Minister the Hon. Philip Davis; State Minister for Investment the Hon. Khaalis Rolle; Prime Minister Christie; Tourism Minister the Hon. Obie Wilchcombe; the principal Dr. Luis Carlos Sarmiento Angulo; his son Juan;and Central and South Eleuthera Member of Parliament and State Minister for Legal Affairs, the Hon.Damien Gomez. (BIS Photo/Peter Ramsay)
South Eleuthera, Bahamas – Prime Minister, the Rt. Hon. Perry G. Christie led a delegation of Cabinet Ministers and senior government officials to South Eleuthera to witness the signing of a Heads of Agreement between the Government of The Bahamas, Cotton Bay Holdings Limited, and Mine Holdings Limited on Friday, May 15, 2015 in Rock Sound.
The Heads of Agreement is for the construction of a five-star, $100 million luxury Four Seasons 115-room boutique hotel, 40 private residences, an 18- hole world class Robert Trent Jones golf course, spa, restaurants, recreational facilities, a commercial shopping center and employee housing.
Initial buildout is expected to generate 200 construction jobs, and 300 permanent jobs for the operation of the resort. Mr. Christie said that the ‘multiplier effect’ of indirect jobs and entrepreneurial opportunities in Eleuthera will add hundreds of additional jobs in the Eleuthera economy.
Prime Minister Christie said he was happy to join the principal of Cotton Bay Holdings Dr. Luis Carlos Sarmiento Angulo and executives of Four Seasons for the official signing of the Agreement.
Dr. Sarmiento, a Columbian citizen and prominent business magnate “is a remarkable success story,” said the Prime Minister. Mr. Christie said Dr. Sarmiento through his holding company, Grupo Aval, acquired considerable fortunes from his investments in banking and other enterprises to become one of the wealthiest men in South America, and a long-time investor in Eleuthera real estate.
He noted that “South Eleuthera Airport facilities will be upgraded to international IATA standards and allow for day and night time commercial and private international flights, with re-fueling and adequate passenger and luggage facilities as well as improved local emergency services to meet the brand standards of Four Seasons and other significant touristic developments taking place in the immediate future.”
Minister of Tourism, the Hon. Obie Wilchcombe said that developments such as these would give Eleuthera the boost that it needed to spur the economy on. He said that his Ministry would be working closely with Dr. Sarmiento in order to provide the necessary assistance with promotion and marketing.
Member of Parliament for South Eleuthera, the Hon. Damien Gomez said the signing of the Heads of Agreement comprised a ‘red letter’ day for Eleuthera. He said Eleuthera has suffered tremendously over the years, therefore he was optimistic that the development would greatly assist the community of South Eleuthera by providing much-needed jobs and opportunities.