Nassau and Paradise Island hotels eyeing strong holiday occupancy

Nassau and Paradise Island hotels eyeing strong holiday occupancy
Bahamas Hotel and Tourism Association (BHTA) president Carlton Russell

NASSAU, BAHAMAS- Nassau and Paradise Island hotels are eyeing ‘strong’ occupancies for Christmas and New Year’s holidays, according to Bahamas Hotel and Tourism Association (BHTA) president Carlton Russell.

Speaking with Eyewitness News, Russell said: “We have seen some significant occupancies in the coming week, particularly with Christmas and new year’s. Thanksgiving was pretty decent.

“That was the first opportunity to really showcase the Bahamas after Dorian. We did have some challenges however with BPL and power outages and some union issues we had to deal with. Both of those are going well now. Hopefully the Christmas and New Year’s will go quite well.”

Russell noted business is on the uptick with increased airlift from several US destinations coming on stream.

“From an airlift standpoint it’s really increasing significantly,” he said.

“We have United, and Silver Airways adding flights, also Jetblue and Air Canada this month are doubling their airlift and the business is growing.”

Prior to Hurricane Dorian, the country’s tourism arrivals were on pace to surpass 2018 numbers – which were the best tourism numbers in a decade, Russell said.

“That’s a very bright picture,” he continued.

“Obviously we are optimistic but cautious.We are watching the bookings as Hurricane Dorian slowed it down a bit. I must thank our partners who came together and put the word out that The Bahamas is open for business.”