Reed Travel Features
NASSAU -- The mood was festive, but Hubert A. Ingraham, Prime
Minister of the Bahamas, kept an eye on business in his address to
guests attending the Radisson Cable Beach Resort's relaunch
"We [the government] have invested a tremendous amount of money
in this facility," he said at the black-tie event, "so we have more
than a casual interest in your success."
The ceremony was the culmination of a $15 million, 12-month
renovation aimed at relaunching the Radisson Cable Beach as an
inclusive resort and marketing it to a wider clientele.
An expenditure of that size covers much more than new linen and
carpeting (although soft furnishings have been upgraded), and
management took pains to make certain that changes ran more than
The remodeled pool area, for example, with three free-form pools
floating through flowered rockscapes and palms, appeals not only to
leisure guests but also provides ample meeting space for groups
wishing to conduct business outside.
George Myers, chairman and chief executive officer of the Myers
Group, which operates the resort, places group occupancy at 20%, a
level that he would like to increase.
The property has 50,000 square feet of indoor/outdoor meeting
space at the disposal of group business, including the
12,500-square-foot Independence Ballroom, inconspicuously located
off the main lobby area and capable of seating 1,500.
According to Leslie Bethel, group and incentive sales manager
for Resort Marketing, which represents the Radisson Cable Beach,
the meetings and incentives crowd can expect "different venues for
different parties," with a focus on flexibility.
Bethel anticipates that the property's inclusive plan should be
especially appealing to groups.
Inclusive private functions and services come with a group
coordinator assigned throughout the program, private registration
for attendees, a hospitality desk, a one-hour cocktail party and
meeting room setup.
Meals and afternoon coffee breaks also are included.
In addition, groups staying at least four nights have the option
of a dinner credit if they choose to go off-site for an event.
Bethel emphasized that "any location, not just the ballroom, is
available for functions, whether it's a cocktail party, sit-down
dinner or awards presentation."
In Bethel's mind, the destination dictates that functions must
be available out-of-doors, and indeed, in one weekend, I noted
groups breakfasting on the hotel terrace, circuiting the poolside
for a dinner buffet and enjoying drinks underneath gazebos.
With flexibility like this, Bethel estimated that four midsize
groups, of as many as 150 participants each, can coexist without
Business and leisure guests will appreciate the resort's
expansion of dining options.
Five restaurants, with a sixth to come, offer diners native
fare, as well as Tex-Mex, Italian, Californian and "Floribbean"
One quibble, however, is that only one restaurant in the
700-room property is open for breakfast; while there is ample
variety at the breakfast buffet, late-risers may need to wait to
Seventy percent of the property is on the inclusive program, and
bars, both at the pool and in the lounge, help patrons get their
Song accompanies the wine; lounge bands and poolside DJs provide
Caribbean-flavored beats at all times of the day.
The retrained staff exhibited an eagerness to please, a welcome
trait, notwithstanding my surprise encounter with an overzealous
housekeeper who visited while I changed for the pool.
The move to inclusive status comes after more than a year of
The changes are in tune with property upgrades throughout Cable
Beach, spurred on by greater chain involvement and renewed consumer
Myers classified the competition as good for all involved
properties and expressed confidence that the Radisson Resort has
positioned itself to be in the thick of the Cable Beach