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Fajardo’s Cayo Largo Resort To Return To Intercontinental Hands

Hotel and foreign company partner in new attempt to open resort


December 25, 2003
Copyright © 2003 CARIBBEAN BUSINESS. All Rights Reserved.

Fajardo’s Cayo Largo Resort will be bought by InterContinental Hotels Group and is expected to open in May, according to InterContinental sources attending an industry event. Calls by CARIBBEAN BUSINESS to several of the company’s executives went unanswered.

Puerto Rico Tourism Co. Executive Director Jose Suarez said he is aware InterContinental Hotels Group has partnered with a foreign company to discuss the purchase. Their intent is for InterContinental to operate the resort while the foreign company acts as the property’s investor.

"There have been several groups interested in buying the property, which still belongs to the Cayo Largo Hotel Associates partners, since the foreclosure that the Puerto Rico Government Development Bank had asked for hasn’t come through," said Suarez. "A final decision on the sale would have to come before the Government Development Bank’s Tourism Development Fund board, of which I am a member, and no final deal has been discussed."

In February, construction of the $120 million hotel came to a halt when disputes over construction costs arose between the local partners: Puerto del Rey Inc. President Dan Shelley, Fuentes Construction Co. owner Gabriel Fuentes, V. Suarez & Co. CEO Diego Suarez Jr., and entrepreneur Manuel H. Dubon. Another alleged setback was that the government never completed expropriating eight acres bordering the resort’s main entrance and providing direct access to highway PR3.

In August, the Government Development Bank began the process of taking ownership of the hotel by paying off the $75.3 million Afica (Puerto Rico Industrial, Tourist, Educational, Medical, & Environmental Control Facilities Financing Authority) tourism revenue bond issued in September 1999. The bank means to assume the first mortgage and foreclose on the property, but it has yet to conclude the process. In September, resort manager InterContinental Hotels Group pulled its four remaining employees from the property.

This Caribbean Business article appears courtesy of Casiano Communications.
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