Discussions are currently in train on whether Rum Point Restaurant will re-open and if the ferry service to the North Side resort will recommence.
The fine dining restaurant at Rum Point has been out of commission since Hurricane Ivan struck Grand Cayman in September 2004, damaging 90 per cent of buildings. The ferry service has also not been running since Ivan.
Rum Point is a beach resort on the North of the island, which is run by the Hyatt Hotel.
Pre-Ivan, Rum Point Restaurant had been a popular spot for evening dinner, and a visit there was often accompanied by a trip on the Rum Point ferry, which ran a service several times a day to the resort from the Hyatt Hotel dock on Seven Mile Beach.
General Manager of the Hyatt Hotel Diego Concha said talks have started on the re-opening of the restaurant and some different options are being entertained. These talks also involve the future of the ferry service.
It is too soon, as yet, for any sort of outcome from these talks, said Mr. Concha.
Speaking about Rum Point’s day-trade, Mr. Concha said people are arriving there in spite of there being no ferry. There is a good mix of residents and tourists visiting for lunch and relaxation, he said.
The bottom line is they are getting results without running the ferry, he noted. This may be because the economy is getting stronger and tourism is good, he said.
Rum Point has seen a great season so far this year for day business at the North Side resort. High season was very good and low season has been well up on last year, he said.
Lunch at the Wreck Bar & Grill is showing a very strong performance compared to previous years.
When asked if he feels business would be even better at the resort with a daily ferry service, Mr. Concha said that stopping the ferry and closing the nightly restaurant were the right decisions to make following Ivan. However, now the results of the ferry not running seem to be showing that it is not actually essential for a good day-time business at Rum Point. ‘This is not my opinion. It is based on pure results,’ he said.
Sometimes it is thought that there is a need for certain elements for a business, he said. This was the case with the ferry and Rum Point. However, gradually it has been realised that the ferry was perhaps not necessarily essential for Rum Point’s day trade.
However, Mr. Concha was quick to point out that the dinner trade is a separate matter and he could not make that previous point with regard to dinner.
Meanwhile, the beach side of the Hyatt Hotel on Seven Mile Beach (53 beach suites) is the only part of the hotel currently operating. The main side of the hotel, containing over 200 rooms, has not been in operation since Hurricane Ivan, pending insurance settlement.