BONAIRE'S NEWEST dive attraction unexpectedly
arrived last month when the 60-foot Our Confidence, an historic
ship, sank 55 feet without warning just west of the harbor in the
capital city of Kralendijk. The vessel, which earlier this summer
experienced problems with leaking, sank in an upright position with
the top of the mast 22 feet below the surface. Fish and marine life
have taken up residence in the clear water, creating a new dive
site. Our Confidence began life as a Danish fishing boat, was used
as a refugee transport ship during World War II and later became a
Caribbean inter-island freighter. It was the first ship to bring
aid to hurricane victims on St. Martin in the late 1990s.
• Two Caribbean resorts will reopen for the winter season a week
earlier than originally scheduled, due to guest demand, they said.
Curtain Bluff on Antigua switched its opening date to Oct. 11 and
will run through July 24. Cap Juluca on Anguilla plans an Oct. 25
opening and will remain open through next August. The two resorts,
along with others, traditionally close for upkeep and maintenance
during the slower September-October period when traffic falls off
and hurricanes tend to peak.
• St. Croix's 138-room Buccaneer resort celebrates its 55th
anniversary with the completion of an $8.8 million, eight-year
renovation. The resort's "5th Night Free" plan includes a spa
treatment for two, champagne upon arrival, a free car for a day and
a fifth night free when four are booked. Rates begin at $215 per
night, double, through Dec. 19. To book, visit www.thebuccaneer.com.
• An ambitious renovation and reconstruction program is under way
at the former Carib Inn, located in the Isla Verde section of San
Juan. The property, which has been closed for three years, will be
gutted, rebuilt and will reopen next summer as the 225-room Holiday
Inn San Juan Hotel. San Juan-based Flagship Services Corp., headed
by local hotelier Rick Newman---a former president of the Puerto
Rico Hotel & Tourism Assn.---will manage and operate the
NEW BUSINESS CARDS
• Derek Newton was named general manager of Carambola Beach Resort,
St. Croix, replacing interim gm Sue Herzog. The 150-room resort
recently announced a $40 million expansion and renovation.
• Glenn D. Harris, formerly director of marketing and public
relations, Caribbean, for American Express, left that post to form
a cooperative marketing support firm for the Caribbean travel
industry. Details will follow shortly.
• The keynote speaker for the Caribbean Tourism Organization's 26th
annual Caribbean Tourism Conference Oct. 13 to 18 in St. Thomas
will be Rex Nettleford, vice chancellor of the University of the
West Indies in Barbados, a former Rhodes scholar and the founder of
the National Dance Theatre Company of Jamaica.
PENCIL IT IN
• Aruba Music Festival, Oct. 10 to 11, Aruba Entertainment Center,
Oranjestad. Music powerhouses Crosby, Stills & Nash and Chicago
are headliners; general admission tickets are $35 per night and can
be purchased at the gate or through several tour operators. For
details, visit www.aruba.com.
• The Gogo Worldwide Vacations Fall Learning Conference, Oct. 16 to
21, Wyndham El Conquistador Resort & Golden Door Spa in
Fajardo, Puerto Rico. Four-night rate starts at $349 per agent,
double, with roundtrip air on American, accommodations, most meals,
tax and service charges. Nonagent companion rate is $499. Two-night
post-conference trips to the Porta del Sol region on the island's
west coast are $59 per person, double. To register, agents with
valid Iatan cards should visit www.gogowwv.com.