Saint Lucia
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30 Honeymoons Later…

Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) is very much like a marriage: Companies are attracted by or wooed to an investment destination by its attractions and after a period of courtship, they legally bind themselves to each other, with forever in mind…

Thirty years ago, on April 17th 1993, Sandals Resorts wedded Saint Lucia on the beach at Hotel La Toc in Castries – and from then on, it’s been like love everlasting.

Their first offspring — Sandals Regency La Toc – brought such satisfaction to their hearts that they decided to build a family, that’s grown in less than a decade to also include Sandals Halcyon Beach and Sandals Grande Saint Lucian; and despite the tough times, they added a fourth in Sandals Golf and Country Club at Cap Estate.

The secret to any successful marriage is love, respect, proper communication and mutual reward and over the three decades since Sandals wedded Fair Helen, this enduring relationship has worked well for both:

Sandals has had a willing and supportive partnerships with successive administrations, including the current one; it’s trained and given lifelong job opportunities to successive generations of Saint Lucians, many of whom now hold senior executive positions in the company, across the region, including at competing hotels; it’s the largest private sector employer (with some 2,000 workers); it’s the largest foreign exchange earner for Saint Lucia — and the largest single private sector contributor to the national coffers.

Indeed, several tour operators, suppliers, taxi drivers, farmers, entertainers, artisans (and many more) earn a good-enough living off their business with Sandals, so the “knock-on” effect goes well beyond its resorts.

‘Sandals and Saint Lucia’ has a ring to it — and it should, as the two seem like a proverbial “match made in heaven”.

The 30th is usually regarded as the ‘Pearl’ anniversary and the favorite gift stone is a Diamond – and both speak of luxury and success — and we trust that this mutually profitable relationship will grow stronger at Sandals’ three ultra-luxury resorts in Saint Lucia.

So, congratulations are in order for both Sandals and Saint Lucia for a ‘Happy Wedding Anniversary. But none of it would ever have been possible without the loyal Saint Lucia staff who’ve been with the company all along. It’s their anniversary too, alongside all those who keep the company’s flags flying high here today.

Congratulations are also in order for top-brass regional management staff like Sandals Grande’s Managing Director Winston Anderson, who’s graced with the unique privilege of having been with the company here for all of its 30 years.

From Founding Chairman Gordon ‘Butch’ Stewart’s signature opening of Sandals La Toc in 1993 to the continuity in commitment shown by his son and Executive Chairman Adam Stewart today, the company deserves our applause and appreciation.

Thirty honeymoons later, the Sandals-Saint Lucia bond seems to only be growing stronger, as if to underline the iconic Caribbean tourism and travel industry company’s branded theme of ‘All You Need Is Love!’