Hotelier: Lack of available room inventory impeding Freeport recovery

Hotelier: Lack of available room inventory impeding Freeport recovery
Pelican Bay Resort General Manager Magnus Alnebeck

Primary focus, “restoration” and “recovery”.

NASSAU, BAHAMAS – A Freeport hotelier yesterday bemoaned the lack of available hotel room inventory on the island to accommodate individuals essential to the Hurricane Dorian recovery, noting that his resort is currently “filled to capacity” and has an extensive waiting list.

Magnus Alnebeck, the Pelican Bay Resort’s general manager told Eyewitness News that he has been forced to interview potential guests regarding their purpose for staying, in an effort to secure accommodations for hurricane relief personnel.

As Alnebeck pointed out, tourists are not the primary focus at this time, with the island still reeling from the devastation of Hurricane Dorian.

Alnebeck noted that it will take considerable time before the island returns to what he described as “the new normal”.

“One of the big problems on the island right now is there are now available rooms,” he said.

“People want to come, but they have nowhere to stay. We were back up and running right after the storm. The resort did sustain damage, but we aren’t focused on that right now.”

He continued, “Normally we have 182 rooms. Right now, we have about 150 that are safe and livable. We are trying to get more back up. What is infuriating is the fact that we have 1,300 rooms across the street at the Grand Lucayan that no one is attempting to get open and that is why we have the bottleneck.

“People are trying to get in, but there is no place to stay. We have a waiting list right now.

“There are persons in Miami right now trying to get here. We are interviewing people to understand their reason for coming. We have snowbirds who want to come down and check on their house.

“This is not the time to use our resources. We need to get relief workers and critical personnel down here.”

Alnebeck said that all of the resort’s 80 staff members have been accounted for in the wake of Hurricane Dorian.