Travel Weeklys Caribbean E-letter: March 2, 2006

THE 65-ACRE ATLANTIS RESORT on Paradise Island, now at 2,317 rooms, will total 3,767 rooms spread over an additional 75 acres by spring 2007. The $1 billion expansion project at Atlantis includes a 600-room, all-suite, 21-story tower and a 450-unit condominium hotel, plus two pools, access to two beaches, a fitness facility, restaurants, another casino, expanded meetings facilities, a host of new sports-based attractions and what the hotel is calling the Caribbeans largest water park, including a dolphin education and interaction center. Tower rooms will feature full balconies, flat-screen TVs, wireless Internet access, walk-in rain showers and a Club Lounge on the top floor. Condo units, which will be placed in the rental pool when not owner-occupied, will offer full kitchens and a range of living spaces from studios to two-bedroom units. The tower pool, accessible only to tower guests, also will have 30 private 12-foot-by-12-foot cabanas, available on a daily rental basis. The cabanas, open on one side to the pool and on the other to the beach, will feature butler service, a flat-screen TV, phone and wireless Internet access, a mini-bar, a bathroom, seating and dining areas, and a large terrace. A new 48-acre waterpark will include a 68-foot-tall water slide, eight feet higher than the resorts existing Mayan Temple water slide; a one-mile tidal wave river ride; and a childrens village. Meetings space at the resort will be doubled by another 100,000 square feet. For details, visit www.atlantis.com.

LODGEPODGE

" Marriott International will expand its presence in Curacao with the opening of the 240-room Renaissance Resort Curacao in Willemstad in 2008. The hotel will be a component of a retail and entertainment complex adjacent to the cruise port, which will feature a manmade beach, a waterfront promenade, six movie theaters, a casino and restaurants. Marriotts current portfolio in the Netherlands Antilles includes the 247-room Curacao Marriott Beach Resort & Emerald Casino, the 413-room Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino, the 560-room Renaissance Aruba Beach Resort & Casino and Marriotts Aruba Ocean Club vacation ownership property.

" Last-minute availability at three properties represented by luxury tour operator Island Destinations includes a four-night, all-inclusive package at Peter Island Resort in the British Virgin Islands, available March 15 to 19, from $900 per room, per night, double, and a seven-night plan at the same resort, available March 18 to 25, from $1,230. A five-night plan at St. Barth Isle de France from March 31 to April 5 is priced from $810 per room, per night, double. Details are included in the operators ID News Flash sent to preferred travel agents. For details, visit www.islanddestinations.com.

CONGRATULATIONS TO DOMINICA, which received Benchmark designation as a Green Globe Destination for the second year in a row from Green Globe 21, the international eco-tourism organization developed by the World Travel & Tourism Council and established in 1994. Green Globe 21 measures and certifies eco-tourism standards in key performance areas that include energy consumption, solid waste production, social commitment, resource conservation and sustainability policies. In addition to the national designation, five hotels on Dominica also achieved benchmarking status from Green Globe 21: 3 Rivers Eco-Lodge, Tamarind Tree Hotel, Garraway Hotel, Fort Young Hotel and the Hummingbird Inn. For information on Green Globe, visit www.greenglobe21.com; for Dominica information, visit www.dominica.dm.

PENCIL IT IN

" 6th Annual Carriacou Maroon Music Festival, April 28 to 30. Street activities known as maroons celebrate the music, dance and theater on Carriacou, the small island off the coast of Grenada. For details, e-mail [email protected] or call the tourist board at (473) 443-7948.

" 1st Annual Curacao Dive Festival, May 20 to 27. Registration is free and participants can take part in guided dives, workshops, seminars, live entertainment, and barbecues and movies on the beach. Participating hotels offer an air fare credit from $100 to $200 off the final hotel bill for stays of five or more nights. For details, visit www.curacao-event.com.

" 10th Annual St. Kitts Music Festival, June 29 to July 2. Island-wide festival features Dionne Warwick among the top performers in jazz, hip-hop, gospel and calypso entertainment. Other performers will be announced over the coming weeks.

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