Controversial British investor, Peter deSavary is once again making national headlines with plans to add another 32 new luxury villas to Mount Cinnamon Beach Resort and Spa at Morne Rouge, St. George’s.
The de Savary Group, of which he is the main player, has officially kicked off work on the new villas that will more than double the 23 five star residential villas at the resort.
Work commenced at the Mount Cinnamon expansion and development project site last week Wednesday, following a groundbreaking ceremony on the property which is overlooking the Grand Anse Beach.
De Savary who is Chairman of the Group said that the first set of about 10 condominiums would be completed in time for the 2016/2017 winter season.
“The first units (of the EC$67 million project) would be ready at some point in the forthcoming (winter) 2016/2017 season and the others will follow on from that,” he told reporters.
According to the British investor the architect and builder have been instructed “to move forward (with the project) as quickly as possible.”
De Savary said he is actively engaged in promoting Grenada as a tourism destination and expressed confidence that this is the opportune time to undertake the expansion project as the “market is looking very encouraging.”
He expressed the view that “Grenada is well on the way to recovery (from the global recession)” which struck in 2008.
“I feel a buzz. I sense greater interest in the country as I travel around the world and talk to people and I think we are blessed with an opportunity with a foreseeable future of attracting investors here…good people who can do good things in partnership with the people of Grenada and the government of the day where everybody can be in a win-win situation,” de Savary said.
“(Last) Christmas we had, I think, nearly 100 (clients). So, when the 32 (condominiums) are finished (the resort), would be (able to cater for) another 60 -70 people and that’s quite a lot of people to cater for,” he added.
De Savary pointed out that with an increase in clientele the resort would require “additional and improved hotel amenities, furnishings, landscaping, infrastructure (et cetera).”
He described the construction of the new villas at Mount Cinnamon as “just phase 2 (of the Mount Cinnamon development Project)”.
“God’s willing, if Phase 2 goes successfully then we would move to Phase 3 and thereafter to Phase 4. We can move as quickly as the market allows us, if we have the confidence to do it and the market requires for us to do it.”
The British investor seemingly dropped out of sight after losing a near million dollar lawsuit brought against him by a British lawyer and her husband over breach of contract.
DeSavary was sued after the British couple had invested with him after he gave an undertaking to build a 250-room hotel on the Grand Anse beach – a project that never materialised.
According to the controversial investor, the overall project at Mount Cinnamon is expected to create “75 construction jobs, 45 new permanent jobs and a new demand for many local services once the condominiums are completed and in use.”
He said the main focus in going forward is on attracting a “quality market of people who appreciate what Grenada has to offer.”
“We have to make the (global) market aware…I am not just saying the United States and Europe, we have to look further a field than that (and) we will be expanding that market (and) attracting more people here (to Grenada).
“We are continuously trying to attract five star clients…people who are not just affluent, but they have to be people who appreciate what Grenada stands for…quality over quantity, authenticity, natural beauty, unrivalled friendliness, a progressive government and the benefits of co-operation …”.
Member of Parliament for the South St. George and Minister for Implementation, Alexander Otway-Noel, who turned the sod with de Savary to mark the start of the project, commended the developer for the additional work at Mt Cinnamon and thanked him for his other contributions to the island’s tourism industry.
The de Savary group has invested in other projects on the island such as Port Louis along the Kirani James Boulevard in St. George and Tufton Hall in Victoria, St. Mark.
The investor acknowledged that while further investment into the Port Louis project “has not been reasonable in the past,” plans are in the making to add another phase sometime this year.
“The market, for the last 7 or 8 years, has not been suitable at all to embark on any significant development at Port Louis,” he said.
“This year, we are going to try our best to attract some other investors to join with us in beginning one of the phases…to try to get Port Louis going,” he added.
The de Savary Group has owned and created over 80 luxury properties in 3 continents around the world over the past 40 years.