A groundbreaking ceremony on Tuesday, January 19th for the construction of Christophe Harbour’s mega-yacht marina marked the latest step forward in the overall development of the exciting luxury tourist resort and residential project on St Kitts’ picturesque Southeast Peninsula.
In accordance with custom, the ceremonial “first dig” was initiated by St. Kitts & Nevis Prime Minister Hon. Dr. Denzil L. Douglas. Among those joining Prime Minister Douglas in commemorating the event were: Senator Ricky Skerritt, Minister of State in the Ministry of Tourism, Sports & Culture; Mr. LeGrand Elebash, COO for Christophe Harbour; Mr. Ellis Hazel, Director of Planning and Community Relations for Christophe Harbour; and Mr. Reginald Francis, owner of St. Kitts Marine Works.
Addressing the gathering of public and private sector guests, Prime Minister Douglas said, “This project is a perfect demonstration of the development model that my Government has promoted, which is based upon a careful mix of foreign direct investment and local entrepreneurial vision. On one hand, we have Christophe Harbour – a foreign owned luxury resort development, combined with the input of local contractors and sub-contractors… which will yield unquestioned benefits to all local businesses, workers and families involved. It is this model that has the greatest potential to inject capital into our economy while generating local entrepreneurial activity and jobs for those directly and indirectly employed by this project.”
St. Kitts Marine Works, a local St. Kitts company, has been contracted to implement phase one of the marina development project, which includes excavation of the mega-yacht basin in the 32-acre “Little” Salt Pond and the creation of 42 new harbor front villa lots in the “Greater Salt Pond.” The lots will be created from the excavation, the first nine of which are scheduled to be available for sale this April. A stockpile of excavated sand will also be kept in reserve to replenish the nearby beaches at Ballast Bay and Whitehouse Bay. The channel from the harbor to Ballast Bay in the nearby Caribbean Sea will be opened upon the completion of this phase of the marina construction, which will bring the harbor to the 20-foot depth needed to accommodate mega-yachts. St. Kitts Marine Works has been involved in various large scale projects on island, including the recent revetment of the bulkhead at St. Kitts’ cruise ship Port Zante, but this is its first major inland marina project.
Senator Ricky Skerritt noted with pride, “Today marks another significant step forward in the ongoing improvement of our tourism product, which is continuing to progress rapidly despite challenging global economic conditions.”
The US $6 million marina project is estimated to take 14 months from start to finish, while providing numerous jobs and entrepreneurial opportunities for the people of St Kitts & Nevis. Upon its completion, the marina will be the centerpiece of the Christophe Harbour development, offering mega-yacht berths, provisioning and services, and a commercial marina village with restaurants and shops. Twelve mega-yacht slips have been released for pre-sale and reservations have been taken on seven slips to date, ranging from 100-200 feet in length. Real estate investment opportunities are also currently available, with private residence sites and some one-bedroom beach or hillside bungalows.
Christophe Harbour has also recently begun to offer their four exclusive beachfront bungalows at Turtle Beach for vacation rental. Meanwhile, work continues on other components of the Christophe Harbour development, including the Tom Fazio designed 18-hole championship golf course. Christophe Harbour is already operating The 5 Star ‘Beach House’ restaurant at Turtle Beach, an earlier phase of the development which opened in 2008.
Christophe Harbour Development Company, Ltd (CHDC), led by Kiawah Development Partners (KDP) of South Carolina, USA, is the master developer for Christophe Harbour, a luxury resort development scheduled for opening in 2012. Located on more than 2,500 acres of hills and valleys, plans include the construction of two upmarket boutique hotels, a mega-yacht harbor, marina, Tom Fazio championship golf course and an impressive collection of restaurants, shops, boutiques and oceanfront and hillside homesites and villas. The Christophe Harbour development is approved for St. Kitts’ Economic Citizenship Program, in which persons who make a minimum real estate investment of US$350,000 in an approved project on island are entitled to apply for Citizenship in the Federation.
Located in the northern Leeward Islands of the Caribbean, St. Kitts offers a diverse tourism product developed from the destination’s natural beauty, cultural heritage and rich history. The island’s stunning variety of tourism attractions include hiking through the tropical rainforest, riding the Caribbean’s only scenic passenger railway, visiting the Caribelle Batik factory, touring Brimstone Hill Fortress National Park (an UNESCO World Heritage Site), and the more traditional vacation pastimes such as watersports, golf, shopping, tennis, gourmet dining, gaming at one of St. Kitts’ two casinos or simply relaxing on one of the island’s sandy beaches. Accommodations range from intimate plantation inns to larger hotels or resorts.