MONTEGO BAY, Jamaica – As part of our ongoing coverage of the 2011 Caribbean Marketplace at Jamaica’s Montego Bay Convention Center, Travel Agent sat in on a press conference by Choice Hotels International and learned that the property’s plans to develop in Haiti, although thrown off by the massive earthquake there, are still on.
Sal Icaza, director of emerging markets and Caribbean franchise development for Choice Hotels International, said the company still has plans for two properties in Haiti despite the setback caused by the earthquake.
One property will be a part of the Ascend Collection, which is a collection of existing hotels that are independently run but affiliated with Choice Hotels International. The 100-room property that was slated to be a member of the collection sustained some serious damage from the earthquake but was not destroyed. It was originally slated to open around now. The second property, which was going to be a 40-room Comfort Inn, was originally slated to begin construction right about now. New timelines for the two properties have not been announced, Icaza said.
“We are not pressuring them in no way, shape or form,” he said. “The deals are still under contract. We are still working with them. They are still our partners and we will stick with them.”