BRIDGETOWN, Barbados -- Tourism arrivals to Barbados increased 8.9% year-to-date compared with the same period in 2002, according to the Barbados Tourism Authority.

In May, arrivals were up 12.4% over the same month a year ago, the BTA said.

On the hotel front, scheduled openings include the Royal Pavilion in October, following a $10 million refurbishment; and the 350-room Barbados Hilton in July 2004.

In other developments, the 200-room Asta Beach Hotel reopens in August, and the management of Coconut Court hotel is restoring the Barbados Pavilion opposite the property as a meetings and dining facility.

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