Developer of Baha Mar Resort Decries Threatened Takeover by Bahamian Government
The developer of the unfinished Baha Mar resort took aim at the Bahamian government after Bahamas Prime Minister Perry Christie said the government would seek to put the resort under government control and force the developer out of the $3.5 billion project.
Baha Mar Ltd. called the government's efforts "unnecessary," accused Christie of being "misleading." The Izmirlian family, which owns Baha Mar Ltd., has sunk about $900 million into the resort project, the company said. The developer also denied the government's assertions that talks with lender Export-Import Bank of China and general contractor China State Construction Engineering Corp. had broken down, and said they were "ongoing."
"We urge the government of the Bahamas not to seize private party assets and to allow the private parties in what is, after all, a commercial enterprise to come to an agreement that would allow for the completion and opening of Baha Mar as soon as possible, as the government has publically and explicitly urged," Baha Mar said in a statement. Baha Mar broke ground in Nassau's Cable Beach area in February 2011. The five-hotel project originally had been scheduled to open to the public by the end of 2014 with the 1,000-room Baha Mar Casino Resort & Hotel, the 707-room Grand Hyatt at Baha Mar, the 300-room SLS Lux and the 200-room Rosewood at Baha Mar; the project's fifth hotel and lone pre-existing property is the 726-room Melia Nassau Beach.