Holiday Inn returns to Cayman

The Holiday Inn is coming back to the Cayman Islands, this time to the North Sound. 

Local company The Grand Caymanian Ltd. has announced plans to convert The Grand Caymanian Resort (formerly Ramada) into Holiday Inn Resort Grand Cayman, according to a news release. 

 

Modifications 

The 117-room resort is located on Crighton Drive behind the North Sound Golf Club. The resort, which fronts the North Sound, will undergo a variety of modifications in order to meet standards set by the franchise’s parent company Intercontinental Hotels Group and the Holiday Inn Resort Collection. 

“We are thrilled to bring the Holiday Inn brand back to Grand Cayman. These new agreements with an outstanding resort franchise and reputable resort management company (operator) will allow us to create an exceptional hotel to meet, work or play in – located on the desirable North Sound, one of Grand Cayman’s most ideal locations,” resort director/owner Reginald “Choppy” Delapenha said. 

“With expanded customer benefits through the Priority Club guest loyalty program and the extensive sales, marketing and technology network IHG and Holiday Inn Resorts provides, we are poised to make a positive contribution to the local tourism industry as well as, expect both the resort and the local business community to mutually benefit from the introduction of the Holiday Inn Resort Grand Cayman,” he said. 

The enhancements include free wireless Internet access in all rooms, public areas and meeting spaces; expanded food and beverage options; children’s activity programmes; water features on the main pool deck; upgraded bath amenities; upgraded meeting space; and Holiday Inn Resort’s bedding packages. 

“Travellers have grown to expect the high level of comfort and service associated with the Holiday Inn Resort brand,” said Brooke Meyer, the resort’s director of sales and marketing. “We are excited to operate under the Holiday Inn Resort flag, and guests will appreciate the new value-added service and amenity offerings provided by our resort.” 

 

Third time around 

The Grand Caymanian Ltd. purchased the resort in 2010. US resort management company Crestline Hotels & Resorts will be the hotel operator. 

Resort director/co-owner William “Junior” Nixon said, “We are truly excited about our new partnership with this prestigious brand and resort management company and look forward to continuing to provide Caymanian hospitality.” 

When it opened on Seven Mile Beach in August 1972, the Holiday Inn was the first internationally branded hotel in the Cayman Islands. The original Holiday Inn was demolished in 1998 to make way for The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman. A new Holiday Inn was built and opened in 2000. It later became the Courtyard by Marriott, which was ruined by Hurricane Paloma in 2008.  

The return of the Holiday Inn is the latest in a string of news related to tourism developments along the Seven Mile Beach corridor. The Dart Group is renovating the former Courtyard by Marriott into a new luxury resort. The owners of the former Hyatt hotel have undertaken redevelopment work on their property. The Ritz-Carlton was sold at auction 31 October to a US private equity firm for US$177.5 million. 

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