Aruba–In other news from the Caribbean Marketplace, Occidental Hotels & Resorts announced plans to open three Royal Hideaways, and in news about the marketplace itself, the event is on track to hit the 1,500-delegate mark and its location for 2008 has been announced. Luis Namnum, executive vice president of sales and marketing for Occidental Hotels & Resorts, says the properties, which are expected to open between the end of 2007 and early 2008 will be in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic; Riviera Maya; and Los Cabos.
Although numbers were not yet official as of Tuesday morning, the Caribbean Hotels Association announced 1,479 delegates were present at this year's event. Although that number is 18 delegates short of last year, officials say the figures have not yet officially been tallied and are expected to reach the 1,500 mark once final numbers are compiled. CHA and Caribbean Tourism Organization officials also announced that Caribbean Marketplace 2008 would take place at the Atlantis Paradise Island, the Bahamas, from January 13 to January 16, 2008. St. Lucia, Jamaica and Cancun have all expressed interest in hosting the event in 2009.