Baha Mar is prepared to open as many as 1,000 rooms for its April 21 soft opening, according to Graeme Davis, president of Chow Tai Fook Enterprises Limited’s (CTFE) Bahamas subsidiary.
CTFE, a Hong Kong based conglomerate, took ownership of the resort last year and committed to a phased opening.
Davis said the convention center, golf course, casino and Grand Hyatt will open on April 21.
The resort will comprise of the Grand Hyatt, the SLS Lux and Rosewood.
“We don’t want to open too many rooms right away. We want to make sure that our restaurant experiences are there,” Davis said.
“The shops will be open. We will have some incredible fountain shows going on. The pool area, pool bars, all will be ready. Very quickly thereafter we will start ramping up the rooms. Every week we will get hundreds of more rooms as we progress over the summer.
“The SLS Lux will follow thereafter in the early summer and early fall. By the festive season of 2017 we will have almost, what we believe, is a full complement, a full experience ready for our guests.”
Davis, an experienced hotelier, noted that over 8,000 people have applied for jobs at the resort so far. Baha Mar is currently seeking to fill 1,500 spots.
“We now have over 8,000 applicants in just over a week and a half. That is absolutely fantastic from the perspective of great qualified candidate and applicants that have come in. The process now is to get back to everyone that has applied over the next week,” he said.
Davis said Baha Mar is seeking to elevate the experience visitors to The Bahamas can enjoy.
“We are competing on a global stage. We want to make sure that there is a real reason for people to want to come here,” he said.
Baha Mar is expected to attract an additional 315,000 air passengers annually to The Bahamas.
As far as expectations for the resort, Davis said, “We want to make sure that we deliver on those expectations and truly we already are. We are in the process of hiring more than 1,500 associates and it will grow quickly. We are expecting over 5,000 jobs and more than that in the indirect and induced jobs which will be close to 10,000. It’s important to understand that those expectations will be meet.”