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UPDATE: McAlpine selected based on finances proposed-Premier Smith

- Says UK Company proposes to plug up to $100M into Prospect Reef Development Project
Government has announced that it is going forward with UK company McAlpine for the Prospect Reef Development Project. Photo: VINO/File
In the limited time alloted to the Premier to spend with reporters of the Virgin Islands, the territory's leader spoke of three developments: the Prospect Reef Development Project, the publishing of a new government magazine and developmental plans for the Queen Elizabeth II Park. Photo: VINO
In the limited time alloted to the Premier to spend with reporters of the Virgin Islands, the territory's leader spoke of three developments: the Prospect Reef Development Project, the publishing of a new government magazine and developmental plans for the Queen Elizabeth II Park. Photo: VINO
Premier, Dr the Honourable D. Orlando Smith during his budget speech on November 15, 2012 had indicated that finding an investor to take over the Government-owned Prospect Reef Resort, which is centrally located, presented several advantages. Photo: VINO/File
Premier, Dr the Honourable D. Orlando Smith during his budget speech on November 15, 2012 had indicated that finding an investor to take over the Government-owned Prospect Reef Resort, which is centrally located, presented several advantages. Photo: VINO/File
ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI – “McAlpine hopes to expend up to one hundred million dollars in carrying out the development. The government is pleased that the selection is made and I am even more pleased to say that we are now in the process of finalizing the project development agreement,” announced Premier and Minister of Finance Dr. the Honourable D. Orlando Smith at a press conference at Central Administration Complex this morning November 12, 2013.

He, however, was unable to say what the direct cost for the project will be but did say that McAlpine’s selection hinged on the monies they had proposed to put into the project. “…essentially, because of the proposal they made based on what they expect to put into the project in terms of finances and in terms of the structures and in terms of roads…,” said Premier Smith.

It was revealed at the press conference that McAlpine’s selection was made on October 24, 2013. The investment is being deemed as very important to the National Democratic Party (NDP) government. According to Premier Smith, the proposal for the development of Prospect Reef has been on the table during the NDP’s time in office from 2003 – 2007.

The Premier further said McAlpine is hoping to develop the project over a three-year period to include villas, hotel suites, recreational and conference facilities, branded condominiums, office spaces and restaurants, among other things.

The UK company was among five that had submitted proposals.

Premier said Government had decided to pursue two of the proposals, which resulted in McAlpine emerging the successful one.

He said the plan to develop Prospect Reef was never a small idea and the aim is to further enhance the local tourism industry. “In fact it was a significant undertaking based on a larger vision for the future of our tourism industry but after we left office this project wasn’t given priority and nothing materialized from this opportunity,” Premier Smith stated.

Meanwhile, the expected timeframe for the commencement and completion of the project is yet to be determined.

See previous article posted November 12, 2013

UK company to take on Prospect Reef Dev. Project

Premier and Minister of Finance Dr The Honourable D. Orlando Smith announced this morning November 12, 2013 that Government is going forward with UK company McAlpine for the Prospect Reef Development Project.

According to Premier Smith, the company is prepared to invest some $100M to move the project ahead.

Speaking at a press conference at Central Administration Complex, the premier also said he does not think it would be necessary for government to put any money into the project.

The Prospect Reef Resort, which is currently owned by Government, is said to have the capacity to create a swirling contribution in the tourism sector but the government does not have the needed finances to develop it and had started calling for private investments.

Details to follow shortly.

See previous article posted April 9, 2013

Locals & foreigners expressing interest in Prospect Reef Resort

- Project out in public domain for bidding

The Government of the Virgin Islands has open the doors for “suitably qualified long term firms” to express interest in developing the Prospect Reef Resort into a world class facility.

The Prospect Reef Resort, which is currently owned by Government, is said to have the capacity to create a swirling contribution in the tourism sector but the government does not have the needed finances to develop it and had started calling for private investments. It was during a House of Assembly sitting in November of 2012 that Minister for Education and Culture, Hon. Myron V. Walwyn had challenged locals with “Money under their Mattresses” to come forward and invest in the project.

“I would like to see a group of local people take the money from under the mattress and invest in the economy because, if we do not do it, somebody else will,” was a cautious statement made by the Honourable Walwyn.

His call had fallen on the heels of those initially made by Premier, Dr the Honourable D. Orlando Smith during his budget speech on November 15, 2012. Premier Smith had indicated that finding an investor to take over the Government-owned Prospect Reef Resort, which is centrally located, presented several advantages.

Eyes are now wide open to see who or which firm will win the bid for the project as according to Permanent Secretary within the office of the Premier Ms Rosalie Adams, there has been a mixture of VIslanders and Non-VIslanders who have expressed an interest in the project.

In a telephone interview with Virgin Islands News Online on April 8, 2013 Ms Adams said that it was consequent of the expression of interest of ten or eleven persons of investing that the Premier has taken the decision to open up the project for bids. “It’s a mixture,” she said when asked about the status of those who would have expressed interest.

She said, however, that there is no knowledge who might win the bid at this point and opined that the possibility exists that it could be someone else who so far might not have indicated an interest but is likely to do so during the open period for bidding. “I believe that what we might have had quite a few investors interested, about ten or eleven have written in but we need to formalize the process so I believe there might be others interested in the subject. I think that is one of the things that prompted Premier to formalise the process and let the thing go out for bid in order to zero in on one of those or maybe it might be a totally new person or company with significant interest in that development,” said Adams.

According to the bid advertisement out in the public domain, the over-arching objective is to “improve the BVI Tourism offering through the development of a large capacity hotel with modern conference facilities and other amenities, add quality jobs to the island’s workforce, and create opportunities for BVIslanders to participate in the project development and operation; and contribute to the Country’s long term economic growth,” it stated.

As stipulated, firms will be allowed the full opportunity to be innovative in developing the Prospect Reef site into a facility that meets world class industry standards. The expressions of interest should consider that the Government of the Virgin Islands is looking for proposals by firms desirous of developing, financing and operating the hotel, world class hotel of star rating 4 and above, with recognizable and consistently high standards in services and amenities, which will enhance the VI’s reputation as a prominent business and leisure tourism destination.

It is also looking for current or proposed affiliation with a successful “branded” hotelier in the industry and should target guests comprising leisure and business travellers, have a room count of at least equal to, but preferably exceeding current complement of over 130 rooms, and modern conference facilities capable of accommodating up to 200 delegates.

The proposed development should complement the attributes of the existing natural and surrounding area and the uniqueness of the Virgin Islands.

The deadline for the submission of Expression of Interest is May 3, 2013.

29 Responses to “UPDATE: McAlpine selected based on finances proposed-Premier Smith”

  • ann (09/04/2013, 08:12) Like (7) Dislike (1) Reply
    you know one of dem friends in dey investment club will get it...
    • Information (13/11/2013, 03:31) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      What are you talking about my sister? This is good news. Don't you want the economy to grow? Didn't you read the article? An investor has been chosen. So what if the the investment club had gotton piece of the deal.There are more than 300 BVIlander investors in the investment clip
  • Confucius (09/04/2013, 08:13) Like (10) Dislike (1) Reply
    Why in God's name does our government put such time constraints on a project such as this? It's the same thing they did with the Pier project! Less than a month? Come on!

    I guess they have already decided who will be involved just like they did with the pier project.
    • links (09/04/2013, 09:21) Like (6) Dislike (4) Reply
      Confucius jesus christ what is your problem? Do you know what an expression of interest is? It is not a bid, it's a preliminary process in order to narrow down the interested parties. They get a month to do it what's your stress man? everything has to be politics with some of u.
      • GoonSquad (09/04/2013, 12:39) Like (5) Dislike (0) Reply
        @ Links..some of us only see and understand negativity.They just listen with other people ears, read with other people eyse and not their own.
      • pete (10/04/2013, 10:16) Like (4) Dislike (1) Reply
        Links, I agree with confucius supposition that there is never enough time to make realistic plans or even crunch numbers for a responsible proposal. NO- not enough time is EVER given for anything including notices of tender, pubic meetings (with less than 24 hrs sometimes) and given the pier park tender agreement, a development of that size and impact should have engineered and measured drawings and a model to see what it looks like, and then shown to the public for imput.

        expression of input takes time to do a credible job as well.
      • Confucius - (the real one) (12/11/2013, 13:26) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
        I did not make that comment. An imposter is using my nick.

        However, I don't disagree with the sentiments.
  • Men n Mice (09/04/2013, 11:35) Like (2) Dislike (1) Reply
    Locals and foreigners should work together and get this going. Its all part of the parasitic/symbiotic relationship that is going on in the VI.
  • I Tell you (09/04/2013, 14:32) Like (0) Dislike (1) Reply
    Look when they decide to do this; When a local done gone and invest in millions to satisfy the need for more rooms and conference facilities. WOW! My dear Ma......don't lose heart, just keep your hands clean and your heart pure. Trust in God to provide and see your rooms occupied even out of season.
    • What?? (13/11/2013, 18:38) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      This project will support and assist Maria's, not do the reverse. If a large conference center is built, to address the MICE market, this will help Maria's, not hurt. New hotel stock attracting quality visitors will help all including Maria's.

      NO, NO, this project is a positive development. It should have happened Nov 2011 not Nov 2013.
  • my two cents (09/04/2013, 15:23) Like (4) Dislike (2) Reply
    why the hell did the NDP purchase this in the first place????
  • doc (09/04/2013, 18:25) Like (5) Dislike (0) Reply
    In the past year and months i have made refference to that same stance about prospect reef hotel. I have told erson/s that when things are settled the NDP government would talk about getting back their monies what they have invested in the place. They the government backed then bought it with government money to buy it back as the investment club. they would come later and tell you it is not feisable to run a hotel so therefore we would have diverse from it by means of selling.Hear my words come to fruition. There main objective is to own the country by deception . Ther is more to come so folks brace you all self they have arrive once more......
  • mann up (10/04/2013, 01:34) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Sounds good but what about all those folks like myself who cannot rasie the capital or get a big bank loan?
  • ooooo (10/04/2013, 21:27) Like (2) Dislike (1) Reply
    and we all done know who the winners are
  • egg face (12/11/2013, 10:45) Like (6) Dislike (0) Reply
    so who are the UK partners tell teh entire story
  • love boat (12/11/2013, 11:19) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Most of what I am hearing is about ideal, but is it plausible.
  • reasoning (12/11/2013, 11:28) Like (3) Dislike (1) Reply
    you all people who comes on these blogs never see the good always the negative one hundred millions of dollars is money in the economy and jobs for people regardless of who gets it bettre still investment club is local as long as the money is staying home regardless if you negative bloggers getting and i aint
  • mother hen (12/11/2013, 12:17) Like (2) Dislike (2) Reply
    I smell a rat this one needs to be investigated...Who has friends and interest where?
  • Real! (12/11/2013, 15:11) Like (0) Dislike (1) Reply
    How over here so quiet? HAHAAHHA!!
  • The Watcher (12/11/2013, 15:35) Like (5) Dislike (0) Reply
    This was the same BS that was pitched during the cruise ship pier disaster and see how that turn out. Our premier always jumping the gun and then loose the race. People there is nothing here to be excited about just another distraction tactics. This isn't going no where no time soon. 100 million in this hard economic time on a property that has no beach. The only thing that might help this to become a reality is if gambling is allowed so it could have a casino. Hotels in the Caribbean that don't have casinos are a dyeing breed here isn't going to be any exception. Good luck with this one. Our premier is becoming the King of Wishful Thinking.
    • Real! (12/11/2013, 16:08) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply

      NOPE!! TPP was an unknown pushed together entity. McAlpine is a reputable firm in business over 100yrs. Do some research before chatting $h!t. I agree nothing is set in stone and a promise is a comfort to a fool, but don't compare this to the cruise pier bull$!?@ That was just pure nonsense. TPP didn't have a track record of doing anything. Pull McAlpine's file and come back and post. BTW, stop telling likes about hotels in the Caribbean. The ones that take their time to upkeep and market their properties are always full.

    • Hmmm (12/11/2013, 16:42) Like (1) Dislike (1) Reply
      the company is a billion dollar company. And the uk is where the money is. You just hating. That why you hurting... Lol
  • hope hill (12/11/2013, 15:53) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
    hope we getting the whole truth
  • DON Q (12/11/2013, 16:18) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
    I support this move but hope we are getting the truth and nothing but the truth as we cannot trust the NDP
  • answer (13/11/2013, 06:29) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    what bout the time share owners who got dupped
  • Yes (15/11/2013, 20:43) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    What else do you expect from the ruling party. They look out for their own and all their members are coated with teflon


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