The opening of the multi-billion dollar Baha Mar resort will usher in a new era of tourism in The Bahamas and expand airlift to the island nation.

Ministry of Tourism Senior Director of Airlift Development Tyrone Sawyer said his team has spent the last three to four years courting new airlift to The Bahamas in anticipation for the opening of the mega resort, which opened last Friday.

Sawyer said with the groundwork set, there is sufficient airlift to accommodate the expected uptick in travels to The Bahamas because of interest in Baha Mar.

“What happens when you have a new product like this it creates excitement in the marketplace and then it creates demand for our destination. Those are things that drive airlift. That is why we are so happy to see this grand opening today,” he said during Baha Mar’s opening.

Senior government officials, hotel executives, stakeholders from the China Export-Import Bank, China Construction America and scores of dignitaries were on hand for the soft opening of the resort on Friday, April 21.

Prime Minister Perry Christie said that once Baha Mar is fully opened, it will “generate an additional 315,000 air passenger seats annually, an increase of 19 percent over our 2015 record of arrivals and signaling in the marketplace the revitalization of The Bahamas tourism brand.”

“Baha Mar’s first phase opening also ushers in a new era in our tourism industry as it will consolidate over 40 percent of Nassau and Paradise Island’s total room inventory in the upscale and luxury product category, shifting this destination’s international lodging profile toward a more high-end, upscale market with added international brands which is critical, not only to improving brand recognition and experience, but increasing airlift capacity and delivery of sustainable, upmarket ADRs for the destination,” the prime minister said.

The resort welcomed its first specially invited guests to the Grand Hyatt this month, and many were immediately seen moving about the hotel casino, pool and restaurants.

Boasting a world-class convention centre, 100,000-square foot casino, 42 restaurants and lounges, 30 luxury stores, 11 swimming pools, a ESPA brand spa and an 18-hole Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course, visitors to Baha Mar will have much to do.

The resort, which sits on half a mile of gorgeous beachfront, promises to leave long lasting memories of The Bahamas’ famous azure waters.

Baha Mar is made up of three hotel brands, Grand Hyatt, SLS Hotels and Rosewood Hotels & Resorts with a total capacity of 2,300 rooms.

Media Contact: Travis Cartwright-Carroll | tcartwright@bahamas.com | 242-397-2790