BVI News

Nearly 200 laid off as Peter Island closes for renovation

Peter Island. (Google Image)

Close to 200 staff members of a major world-class resort in the British Virgin Islands are now jobless.

Three months after Hurricane Irma ravaged the territory, Peter Island Resort and Spa announced plans to undergo renovation works and as a result, sent home almost 90 percent of its staff.

According to our well-placed sources, the announcement came last Friday during a special general staff meeting at the 720 hectares, private island.

“They laid off partly everybody, they kept the people who they said is going to do construction and so on,” our source said, adding that the figure of those who will remain was no more than 15.

No surprise

According to our source, the news did not come as a surprise bearing in mind the level of devastation that the resort suffered.

“When we go over there and I see how the place looks I knew that they wouldn’t keep us.”

The source informed that he has been employed with the resort for the past three years and the company is going to offer a severance package. The resort had also paid their employees a stipend despite being out of business every month.

Website confirmed closure

Meanwhile, a search on the company’s website confirmed that the resort will be not be accepting guests for some time.

“On behalf of the entire Peter Island team, we say Thank You! The support and kindness we have felt from all of you during this difficult time have been overwhelming and it has warmed our hearts to know how loved we are, not just as a resort, but as a country and destination in the Caribbean,” a statement read.

According to Peter Island, damage assessments are still underway from Hurricanes Irma and Maria, and like many similarly situated properties, “we, unfortunately, have to share that the resort will remain closed for the duration of 2017 and into late 2018.”

No date for reopening

Peter Island operators informed that they were unable to say when the resort will be ready.

“We do not have a reopening date yet as this will depend on the progress of the BVI government to restore normal operations, the return of staff, and our rebuild. The combination of these factors will be the basis of our eventual reopen date. Until we are confident we can provide you, our valued Peter Island guests the experience you deserve, we will not be taking reservations for future bookings”.

All attempts to contact Human Resources Manager Chad James for comment proved futile.

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