NEW ERA: PM signs Jack’s Bay Heads of Agreement

NEW ERA: PM signs Jack’s Bay Heads of Agreement
Prime Minister Hubert Minnis is pictured centre with Developers Sir Franklyn Wilson, left, and Tommy Turnquest. (BIS Photo/Kemuel Stubbs)

NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis yesterday said the development of the Jack’s Bay resort, golf course and marina project signaled a new era is on the horizon for the people of Eleuthera.

The prime minister signed the Heads of Agreement with Eleuthera Properties Ltd at the Cabinet Office on Friday.

Phase 1 of the project is “substantially completed” with a  total 107,370 sq. ft. of buildings already constructed, Minnis said.

More than 200 people were employed on the project prior to the start of the COVID-19 shutdown, and 100 workers were retained during the lockdown period.

The first phase includes: main entrance, roads, landscaping and infrastructure; 10 hole par 3 Tiger Woods Golf playground; playground clubhouse, restaurant and retail; club lodge (main clubhouse) and pool area; beach club; and tennis courts.

It will also encompass the protection and enhancement of natural features, including Blue Holes, Caves, Turtle Cove, an inland lake, nature trails and native planting.

There will be 18 club villas.

A playground at Jack’s Bay.

The heads of agreement was originally slated for March 17, but delayed due to COVID-19.

On August 28, Tiger Woods announced the opening of a playground at Jack’s Bay.

Minnis said the completion of the project’s first phase has allowed for the recent opening of the club and the presentation of the residential product to the marketplace.

In addition to Disney’s Lighthouse Point project, Minnis said other developments are on the horizon for Eleuthera.

He furthered the island, including South Eleuthera, is about to go through an economic renaissance.

“For many decades South Eleuthera has struggled to find sustainable development projects,” he said.

“A new era is on the horizon for the people of Eleuthera, a dream long in the making, finally coming to fruition.

“This project along with others, will help our national economic recovery, post the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We have to be ready as a country to take advantage of when travel and tourism begin to return.”

Minnis said: “The islands of The Bahamas must be prepared for a new world of hospitality and tourism.”

EPL has invested more than $100 million into the Eleuthera project, according to its chairman, Sir Franklyn Wilson, who noted the company had no bank debt.

At yesterday’s signing, officials acknowledged the development has been decades in the making.

Sir Franklyn said EPL has held ownership of these land parcels for almost 35 years, noting its shareholders and Directors have demonstrated “the patience and the discipline to not pursue short cuts and to continue to invest”.

The Jack’s Bay development sits on 1,200 acres south of Rock Sound Eleuthera.

Wilson explained its business model reflected a private members club and residential community.

“It is being positioned to be ranked among the finest of such communities anywhere in the world.

Wilson underscored the destination has the distinctiveness and authenticity to propel it to the top of international rankings.

“It begins with a profound appreciation that Mother Nature is the Designer In Chief for Jack’s Bay.” he said.

“After all, it was Mother Nature who placed within one parcel of land pretty much everything which makes the Bahamas so physically attractive –  three and a half miles of white and pink sand beaches, and pristine coastline, an incredible bluff, rolling hills which are high enough to support vistas of both the Caribbean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean, of sun rises and sun sets; land attached to the ocean, a bay, a lagoon, and  a substantial inland lake so surrounded with elevations that it is essentially a bowl, five blue holes, a shrimp pond, a turtle preserve and more.”