Royal Caribbean to Buy Grand Lucayan, Develop Freeport Harbour

The $65 million, all-cash deal is one that will no longer be made on behalf of Grand Bahama's taxpayers.

Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. is gearing up to purchase the Grand Lucayan Resort in Grand Bahamas and redevelop Freeport Harbour. The company has signed a letter of intent with Lucayan Renewal Holdings Ltd. and the ITM Group to begin exclusive negotiations for the purpose. 

The proposal includes the complete redevelopment of Grand Lucayan into a destination with water-based family entertainment, dining, gaming and hotel accommodations. The redevelopment of Freeport Harbour, meanwhile, is expected to result in an additional 2 million cruise passengers annually to Grand Bahama, Royal Caribbean said. Phase one of the project is expected to cost $195 million over 24 months.

Grand Lucayan Resort is a property on Grand Bahama Island that offers both all-inclusive and European plan accommodations. It currently has 196 guestrooms open, plus a 7.5 acre white sand beach, an 18-hole golf course, a variety of restaurants and bars, a spa and fitness center and two swimming pools. 

In a written statement Royal Caribbean International President and CEO Michael Bayley said that the proposal to redevelop the resort and harbor has the potential to significantly increase tourism to Grand Bahama. Additionally, the company expects the first phase of the project to create 2,000 jobs. 

Next up, Royal Caribbean will begin negotiating the Heads of Agreement with the government of the Bahamas on matters related to Bahamian employment and participation requirements. No further details on the project are available at this time. 

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