PHILIPSBURG:--- St. Maarten added a top luxury resort brand to the list of vacation properties travelers can choose from as the Hilton Grand Vacation Club, officially rebranded the Flamingo and Royal Palm Beach Resorts on Wednesday.
Acting Minister of Tourism Economic Affairs Transport & Telecommunication (TEATT), the honorable Omar Ottley hailed the rebranding of the two-timeshare resorts as a signal of great things to come for St. Maarten.
Minister Ottley said, "The Hilton brand would undoubtedly attract new visitors to St. Maarten and further strengthen the long-term vision of showcasing the tourism destination as the service innovation center of the Caribbean."
Las Vegas-based Timeshare Company Diamond Resorts International operated both the Flamingo Beach Resort and Royal Palm in Simpson Bay, St. Maarten for many years.
The honorable Ardwell Irion, Minister of Finance, and the honorable Egbert Doran, Minister of Public Housing, Physical Planning, Environment and Infrastructure, accompanied Minister Ottley to the unveiling ceremony which was held first at the Flamingo Beach Resort and than at Royal Palm, now both Hilton Vacation Club properties.
“Today is evidence that great things are happening, and I am elated to be part of the rebranding. Congratulations to the stakeholders and staff that played their part. I am pleased to see that there is an appetite to invest and the Hilton group made use of this opportunity because they saw potential in our island. Bringing a luxury resort brand such as Hilton will help boost our economy and is an indication that our tourism will continue to grow,” said Minister Doran.
"St. Maarteners must be proud of this achievement. Today, a Global Hospitality Company has chosen to make a significant investment in branding two properties with over 360 rooms, making it possible for the Hilton Vacation Club owners to have our 36 square mile island as a future vacation option," said Minister Ottley.
Minister Ottley said that the addition of the Hilton Brand shows the diversity of St. Maarten and reconfirms that the island has significant economic potential and opportunities for growth. "We must continue to work towards ensuring investor confidence in our destination. I believe that the former Flamingo Beach Resort and Royal Palm employees will continue to exhibit St. Maarten's ‘Island flavor of hospitality to make our Hilton vacationers feel welcomed and at home."
The Hilton Grand Vacation Club (HGVC) is a timeshare-point-based reservation and exchange system allowing HGVC members leisure travel opportunities. There are currently more than 300,000 HGVC members worldwide. Club membership provides exclusive exchange, leisure travel, and reservation services.