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Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: StormJib] #97584
05/18/2016 10:23 AM
05/18/2016 10:23 AM
Joined: Dec 2004
Posts: 2,276
Ill, USA
Will_L Offline
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Ill, USA
Why such a stretch to justify a runway? Can you name a single geezer employee that is forbidden to travel by an employee contract you describe? Of course you cannot. And how many seats on these daily multiple flights do you claim these phantom individuals forbidden to travel by employers take up?
There are a lot of people with health issues that do not travel out of the US for that reason. A very wealthy friend who got us started visiting the USVI sold his Villa on St. John because of heart problems and his wife's declining health. He in no way would make air evac a criteria..has it on STT..not worth the risk to him. It is in no way going to fill seats with health compromised elderly people.

Currently coach is about a grand into EIS from St. Louis . Listening to you and more importantly George C who knows the inner workings of the airline industry in the nasty now and now rather than the sweet bye and bye ..I suspect that price would be at least 1800 in COACH.. When arriving in STT there are several islanders, lots of tourists with accomodations on STT,l a huge % going to St. John and a smaller contingent going to the BVI to bareboat or a land stay. I have never seen a ferry too crowded to board.

When an airline lands in SJU, there are many islanders aboard, and a huge % of tourists going to various Caribbean destinations.

When a large jet would land at EIS that would be the destination of nearly every passenger. Which is the best business model to fill aircraft?
Would a family of 4 choose to pay 7200 $ airfare and arrive at west end for a charter at 5 pm after a 120$ taxi ride or arrive at 5 paying 2400$ airfare plus 200$ ferry trip?

Your claim of "walk up and fly" also shows a lack of understanding of economics. In yesteryear, I rode on many flights where I had not rows but "sections" of an aircraft to myself. Indeed often would move passengers on a huge aircraft to properly distribute the weight. Those airlines all went bankrupt, cut fares to be competitive with SWA at the time a low price carrier..not so much these days. They went broke for various reasons but not flying with seats full topped the list. You don't see much of that these days. The reorganized airlines cut seats..the Arizona desert was full of them. They are now profitable because for the most part they are competitive on routes and fill planes with coach passengers. Your claim that they will go back to a previous business model and fly with a few well heeled passengers, accountants and financing consultants and corporate types who are forbidden to travel as you describe that don't exist is ludicrous.
For a healthy BVI tourism ..underwriting ferries and cape air would be a lot more beneficial. From our small city service on Cape Air is 50$ each way to St. Louis 120 miles. It's subsidized . Imagine the effects of a similar service from SJU to EIS and VJI .. It would likely be far cheaper and net revenue gain than this albatross .

If you can just "walk up and fly"

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Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: Will_L] #97585
05/18/2016 10:42 AM
05/18/2016 10:42 AM
Joined: Mar 2014
Posts: 124
Victoria, BC, Canada
J
JD_Midnight Offline
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Posts: 124
Victoria, BC, Canada
Fascinating opinions. Mine counts for little but is more of an observation. BVI is a tiny place. That really is its charm. There is little infrastructure...never know what you will find in the stores. Close by is a US territory with much more infrastructure and access and consistently lower prices. I can't imagine mass tourism being viable; if so it would be self defeating. The really rich... They will get there as they do already. Again, part of the charm. Lots of flights from SJU ( probably would be more if there was demand). New hospital... That won't figure in.. Not why people come.

This seems driven by other agendas.. I will likely happen but by then who knows what the BVI will look like.

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: JD_Midnight] #97586
05/18/2016 11:50 AM
05/18/2016 11:50 AM
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 1,711
Maine
Breeze Offline
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Breeze  Offline
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Maine
Somehow I do not see the BVI becoming the Dubai of the Caribbean.

Should it happen, it will not be in my lifetime.

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: JD_Midnight] #97587
05/18/2016 12:03 PM
05/18/2016 12:03 PM
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 1,049
S
StormJib Offline
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StormJib  Offline
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I do not see any plan or path to mass tourism. In fact the opposite may come into play. Fewer visitor than the 300,000 overnite today spread over more months of the year at greater spend per night is economically possible. No one should fault the belongers for an attempt at a higher quality of life and the equivalent of their own middle class in the future. On those small BVI islands that is only possible with a greater hospitality spend per person per night. Secret banking is not the sustainable long term path to nirvana. For those that crave bargain airfares. There is no free lunch in the mature and highly sophisticated airline industry. Cheap fares are always the discounting, even giving away, of excess seat capacity. That happens during non peak times and when planes are being re-positioned to capture those passengers willing to pay a premium. Every cheap fare must be offset by someone paying a premium at another time or on another route. Southwest today runs their airline on +/- 15 cents per mile per passenger plus any fees and taxes each time a plane lands and takes off. That incremental stop landing and taking off at SJU really adds to the cost of the trip. For those traveling less than 2,000 miles the air cost should be +/-$300 each way plus fees and taxes. Anytime your ticket cost is less that 15 cents per mile someone else is paying part of your tab somewhere.

There are many senior executives and those with large life insurance policies who cannot fly on single engine aircraft. There others with a lot to live for who simply will not fly on single engine aircraft. There are still more who will not bring their healthy friends and family anyplace without a full service hospital and any location where AMEX cannot dispatch a FAA 135 air ambulance to take them back home when they do not feel well or get hurt. For two decades or more my AMEX benefits allow anyone I purchased the inbound ticket using the AMEX to be returned home via air ambulance should they become ill or injured on the trip.

Mass cheap travel... look to Mexico, the DR, Caymans, the BVI will never be able to play in that game and I see no hint they want to. I do see a clear attempt to higher quality properties are far more per night. The same will come into play for boats and when you look at the new large multi hulls is really already here. The bar tabs at Pirates may be another example. During my first trips in the early 80's we spent less than 1,000 per person per week including airfare. Our trips today start at $25K and go up.

Those planes in the desert are there because they cost too much per hour to operate compared to newer designs and in some cases simply make too much noise to land and takeoff many places.

Again regular reliable jet access into and out of the BVI each day direct to US hubs is the key to long term property values in the BVI.

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: hallucination] #97588
05/18/2016 12:49 PM
05/18/2016 12:49 PM
Joined: Dec 2004
Posts: 395
road town
sleepychef Offline
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sleepychef  Offline
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Posts: 395
road town
Quote
hallucination said:
Too bad I don't have the time to wordsmith this article to start a conspiracy theory.
Getting on a plane to go down island.

Let me... the golf course was offered 131 acres of beach front property for only $1.5mil on a 99 year lease very easily to change to freehold, letter of intent signed by the mentioned minister as well as Ralph the Premier at the time.

They tried to sell off from Cow Wreck all the way to Anegada Beach Club for pennies on the acre, the minister allegedly even got information in regard to the persons bank balance before the offer was made. A Golf course was never going to happen the developer was just going to hold onto the land, another pipe dream by the Minister...

This was halted in its tracks.

As to the lowest offer from the Chinese it wasn't at the time the initial offers were made as again I sat in on an offer with an American Company and Airline involved in the bid.

http://www.bviplatinum.com/news.php?articleId=1355772237&ref=

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: sleepychef] #97589
05/18/2016 12:58 PM
05/18/2016 12:58 PM
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 1,049
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StormJib Offline
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Quote
Breeze said:
Somehow I do not see the BVI becoming the Dubai of the Caribbean.

Should it happen, it will not be in my lifetime.


You are spot on there. Dubai is planning an airport expansion to allow 120 million passengers per year in the near term and 220 million passengers over the very long term.

The BVI today operates with +/-300,000 overnight visitors each year spending just over $400M total in the islands for an average local overnite visitor spend of +/-$1,400. The key to BVI success is the same or fewer visitors spending more money in the islands each day they are here. Each villa bed or hotel room should be on a path to rent for more each night. Each bar and eatery on a path to sell the same or fewer drinks for more revenue. None of that is sustainable without cutting the hassles to get on and off the islands. For those that think I am crazy. Please note there are now many bareboats in the BVI with rates north of $20,000 per week and those boats are the first to book. The multi season high end travelers of Aspen might be a better comparison for the BVI's future than Dubai. Kauai could also be a slightly larger comparison with just over 1 million visitor each each. Kauai is in the process of extending it 6500 foot runway +/-1,000 feet further out into the Pacific Ocean.

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: StormJib] #97590
05/18/2016 01:33 PM
05/18/2016 01:33 PM
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 33
Somewhere out there
I
invisigal Offline
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Posts: 33
Somewhere out there
In order to create this high-end Shangri-La you speak so knowingly of, you would first of all have to radically decrease the cruise ship presence in the BVI, as no one spending more than the already overheated prices in the BVI would want to share the beach with the day-tripping hoards. And yet, paradoxically, the BVI isn't going in that direction. No, the "other agendas" argument seems to hold more water.

And how can you compare an island with the size, density, economy, politics and geography of Kauai with the BVI? You have a developed, American, subsidized, physically remote island, pretty much the opposite of the BVI.

And how does a "semi-retired...global...fan of boat fun" know so much more about the BVI tourist and the BVI tourism product than actual operators and owners of BVI tourism assets?

Curious and curiouser.

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: StormJib] #97591
05/18/2016 02:15 PM
05/18/2016 02:15 PM
Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 5,533
Massachusetts
maytrix Offline
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Posts: 5,533
Massachusetts
Quote
StormJib said:The key to BVI success is the same or fewer visitors spending more money in the islands each day they are here. Each villa bed or hotel room should be on a path to rent for more each night. Each bar and eatery on a path to sell the same or fewer drinks for more revenue. None of that is sustainable without cutting the hassles to get on and off the islands. For those that think I am crazy. Please note there are now many bareboats in the BVI with rates north of $20,000 per week and those boats are the first to book.


Well.. I think you are crazy. Let's take Moorings as an example. 200 boats. About 12 (I think) of them are their 58 foot cats - Upwards of $25-30k fully crewed. That's a small percentage. And we're not talking a single family taking out a boat that size. We're talking at least 5 cabins - that's $5-6k a cabin. $5-6k for an all-inclusive is on the high side, but not crazy. The bigger question is how many of those people return regularly? Multiple times a year?

Much more popular are the boats where you might be looking at $2-3k a cabin or less. And this seems to be the group that returns frequently.

Raise the hotel rates, raise the food and drink prices and at best places might make the same they make now, because I'm sure fewer people would be spending. Regardless of what happens with prices, we'll still spend the same amount at restaurants and bars. Prices rise, we'll just east/drink out less to keep our budget where it is.

I'm still not sure how getting to the BVI is a hassle... especially if you think money is the driving factor.. Just fly to San Juan and take a Cape Air flight or if you prefer a larger plane, Seaborne. Or charter a private flight. Or fly into St. Thomas and you can even do the same or a helicopter flight to Tortola, not to mention the ferry.

Only hassle that would be eliminated with a direct flight from Miami would be for the person starting in Miami as they have a single flight. For everyone else, you'd still be switching planes.

Last edited by maytrix; 05/18/2016 02:17 PM.

Matt
Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: invisigal] #97592
05/18/2016 02:15 PM
05/18/2016 02:15 PM
Joined: Mar 2001
Posts: 1,072
Colorado and Sailing the World
Maria_and_Steve Offline
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Posts: 1,072
Colorado and Sailing the World
The BVI government should look south in the island chain at Grenada to see what the Chinese did there. Just to name one: the Stadium debacle. Now the Chinese are trying to build a new resort in Mt. Hartman's bay.

Armed guards are necessary to protect the Chinese from the locals because the locals are so upset at what the Chinese did with the Stadium. Bring the topic up to any Grenadian and you will get the true story.

The same mess will occur in the BVI's if they are involved in any projects there. Just beware who your bedfellows are smile

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: Maria_and_Steve] #97593
05/18/2016 03:14 PM
05/18/2016 03:14 PM
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 3,856
South Sound Villa Virgin Gorda
tpcook Offline OP
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tpcook  Offline OP
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Posts: 3,856
South Sound Villa Virgin Gorda
I did a Goggle search for the Grenada Stadium and all I find is praise for the stadium which apparently was a gift from China. What is the problem with the stadium?


tpcook
Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: tpcook] #97594
05/18/2016 04:04 PM
05/18/2016 04:04 PM
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 785
Calgary
B
bonefish Offline
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Calgary
It would be interesting to see what impact the new longer runway has had for St. Vincent. Their old runway was as long as BVI. Might be too soon to tell.

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: bonefish] #97595
05/18/2016 04:11 PM
05/18/2016 04:11 PM
Joined: Mar 2001
Posts: 1,072
Colorado and Sailing the World
Maria_and_Steve Offline
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Posts: 1,072
Colorado and Sailing the World
Some of the problems with the Grenada Stadium were:
1. No Grenadian workers were permitted to work at the site
2. Payments to politicians by the Chinese were very large to give them a foothold in Grenada
3. The stadium is already falling into disrepair due to poor workmanship

Google tends to report what the governments and press want you to see, as is the case for Grenada smile

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: bonefish] #97596
05/18/2016 04:32 PM
05/18/2016 04:32 PM
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 1,049
S
StormJib Offline
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Quote
bonefish said:
It would be interesting to see what impact the new longer runway has had for St. Vincent. Their old runway was as long as BVI. Might be too soon to tell.


The 9,000 foot runway at a completely new airport on St. Vincent is not landing any planes yet.

"More precise date for St Vincent airport opening to be given at the end of April"....

It is May last I checked...

When operational a 9,000 foot runway could be a real game changer for that region of islands. St. Vincent will have to overcome at least the perception there is a crime problem there. We have sailed St. Vincent and The Grenadines with no issue. We only toured explored the interior of St. Vincent once. We tend to avoid large islands and spend as little time as possible on Tortola during our BVI visits. Almost two decades ago we were touring/exploring a Banana plantation on St. Vincent with a private local man. We came down a path to find a building clearly marked... Chinese Agricultural Extension Service. I was a little stunned. What interest would the Chinese have so far from home?

What all the island leaders have figured out along with most US local leaders is if you do not have at least 7,000 feet of runway you cannot play in the game of business or tourism anymore.

If you enjoy sailing and sailing between islands I encourage everyone to do at least one trip to the St. Vincent area. Young Island Resort is a great place to start and end your trip. Until the new airport has real flights the connections through Barbados can be troublesome. If you are willing to sail overnight you can fly direct to St. Lucia and start there.

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: StormJib] #97597
05/18/2016 04:54 PM
05/18/2016 04:54 PM
Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 8,526
Ya never know...
HillsideView Offline
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HillsideView  Offline
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Posts: 8,526
Ya never know...
Really folks, this airport expansion is hardly about tourism "in general" but for a very small,select group who have their own aircraft. Always was.
Gov't invested some $$ in a local airline operation that. will probably run a few weekly flights from EIS to MIA.
I highly doubt you could fill an aircraft more than once a week out of the New York area, and I doubt we will be seeing the mainline operators getting involved. The supporting infrastructure isn't there and the killer will be the fuel costs and ground services.


My foot fits right into my shoe and my shoe will fit right into your...
Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: HillsideView] #97598
05/18/2016 05:07 PM
05/18/2016 05:07 PM
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 1,049
S
StormJib Offline
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StormJib  Offline
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Quote
invisigal said:
In order to create this high-end Shangri-La you speak so knowingly of, you would first of all have to radically decrease the cruise ship presence in the BVI, as no one spending more than the already overheated prices in the BVI would want to share the beach with the day-tripping hoards. And yet, paradoxically, the BVI isn't going in that direction. No, the "other agendas" argument seems to hold more water.

And how can you compare an island with the size, density, economy, politics and geography of Kauai with the BVI? You have a developed, American, subsidized, physically remote island, pretty much the opposite of the BVI.

And how does a "semi-retired...global...fan of boat fun" know so much more about the BVI tourist and the BVI tourism product than actual operators and owners of BVI tourism assets?

Curious and curiouser.


Take a deeper look some of the 'Shangri-La" is in progress. Completely tour Scrub, completely tour Peter Island, completely tour Nail Bay, review in detail the plans underway at Little Dix. The BVI is most certainly moving more upscale in a number of ways. It is not just the moorings with higher end boats almost floating condos. The Catamaran Company, Voyage, and even TMM have much higher $quality$ boats in their fleets.

I am not business fan of the cruise ships. The cruise ships offer the local market 50-100 bucks per passenger on the days they show up. The contracts are always short and in the cruise operators favor. From Mobile, Alabama to Grenada local governments have been out negotiated with the cruise ships who can take their built in infrastructure and go someplace else if the local government will not give them the deal that want. At the end of each cycle each location must bid for the business they think they already have.

If the BVI can get the proper airlift working and clientele to fuel better shops and dining? Those cruise ship piers could always be filled with mega yachts swapping crews and guests. Also keep in mind the cruise masses only his a few spots on some of the islands. You will not see them near Peter Island or Nail Bay.

The deep pocket hospitality operators and professionals are the ones pushing for and demanding the runway. David Johnson of Nail Bay was very clear and very public the conditions of his deal to invest in Nail Bay was the BVI was to build a new hospital, to extend the existing runway to enable direct flight access from cities like Miami and New York. The BVI was just as clear and just as public the runway will be extended somehow. Other resort professionals are just as specific on the airport requirement just not as public with the demand.

As long as other business revenue is created to replace the massive cruise ship daytrippers the ships can go away in one season or at least be replaced by smaller more elegant cruise ships and their better class of passengers. The BVI needs better shopping and eatery options along the lines of St. Barts to pull the better boutique cruise options into the docks. My vote would be the very large mega private yachts at those docks between family visits or charters. St. Martin is long out of space for that business. What is missing? Easy direct jet service from the US or what the industry leaders are calling 2.5 hour service from MIA. Flight time from JFK to St. Lucia today is 4.5 hours and soon St. Vincent will have the same option.

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: HillsideView] #97599
05/18/2016 05:41 PM
05/18/2016 05:41 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 5,008
GA/NC
GeorgeC1 Offline
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GeorgeC1  Offline
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Posts: 5,008
GA/NC
I tend to agree that the runway extension is geared to private aircraft however a 5000 runway would accommodate almost all private jets. There is no need to extend it to 7000 which is a order of magnitude harder. The Gulfstream G650 which is what any billionaire with a shred of self respect demands can make it from the BVI to anywhere in the US and Europe off 5000 feet. With 5850 feet it can go 7000 miles unrefueled!
G
G

Last edited by GeorgeC1; 05/18/2016 05:49 PM.
Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: GeorgeC1] #97600
05/18/2016 06:08 PM
05/18/2016 06:08 PM
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 1,049
S
StormJib Offline
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StormJib  Offline
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Posts: 1,049
If the effort was simply to appease the private jet crowd the BVI leadership would not be handing over $7M to subsidize these albatrosses in the interim until the runway can be completed. There is much more to the passion on the subject than a handful of private jet visitors.

[Linked Image]

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: StormJib] #97601
05/18/2016 06:31 PM
05/18/2016 06:31 PM
Joined: Dec 2004
Posts: 2,276
Ill, USA
Will_L Offline
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Will_L  Offline
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Joined: Dec 2004
Posts: 2,276
Ill, USA
Quote
StormJib said:
Quote
invisigal said:
In order to create this high-end Shangri-La you speak so knowingly of, you would first of all have to radically decrease the cruise ship presence in the BVI, as no one spending more than the already overheated prices in the BVI would want to share the beach with the day-tripping hoards. And yet, paradoxically, the BVI isn't going in that direction. No, the "other agendas" argument seems to hold more water.

And how can you compare an island with the size, density, economy, politics and geography of Kauai with the BVI? You have a developed, American, subsidized, physically remote island, pretty much the opposite of the BVI.

And how does a "semi-retired...global...fan of boat fun" know so much more about the BVI tourist and the BVI tourism product than actual operators and owners of BVI tourism assets?

Curious and curiouser.


Take a deeper look some of the 'Shangri-La" is in progress. Completely tour Scrub, completely tour Peter Island, completely tour Nail Bay, review in detail the plans underway at Little Dix. The BVI is most certainly moving more upscale in a number of ways. It is not just the moorings with higher end boats almost floating condos. The Catamaran Company, Voyage, and even TMM have much higher $quality$ boats in their fleets.

I am not business fan of the cruise ships. The cruise ships offer the local market 50-100 bucks per passenger on the days they show up. The contracts are always short and in the cruise operators favor. From Mobile, Alabama to Grenada local governments have been out negotiated with the cruise ships who can take their built in infrastructure and go someplace else if the local government will not give them the deal that want. At the end of each cycle each location must bid for the business they think they already have.

If the BVI can get the proper airlift working and clientele to fuel better shops and dining? Those cruise ship piers could always be filled with mega yachts swapping crews and guests. Also keep in mind the cruise masses only his a few spots on some of the islands. You will not see them near Peter Island or Nail Bay.

The deep pocket hospitality operators and professionals are the ones pushing for and demanding the runway. David Johnson of Nail Bay was very clear and very public the conditions of his deal to invest in Nail Bay was the BVI was to build a new hospital, to extend the existing runway to enable direct flight access from cities like Miami and New York. The BVI was just as clear and just as public the runway will be extended somehow. Other resort professionals are just as specific on the airport requirement just not as public with the demand.

As long as other business revenue is created to replace the massive cruise ship daytrippers the ships can go away in one season or at least be replaced by smaller more elegant cruise ships and their better class of passengers. The BVI needs better shopping and eatery options along the lines of St. Barts to pull the better boutique cruise options into the docks. My vote would be the very large mega private yachts at those docks between family visits or charters. St. Martin is long out of space for that business. What is missing? Easy direct jet service from the US or what the industry leaders are calling 2.5 hour service from MIA. Flight time from JFK to St. Lucia today is 4.5 hours and soon St. Vincent will have the same option.


You are obviously the same promoter of this nonsense 4-5 years ago under a different handle Storm Jib. You were promoting at that time George's mega resort, artificial reef at nail bay and the debacle of extending BeefIsland airport .. I notice you are singularly bringing up the long gone Nail bay adventure...way gone..a BVI real estate company is renting the nail bay units and George, the promoter of the deal only you have mentioned is ..long gone . Why do you bring up that long dead project and why do you espouse the same air connection you so vociferously did under a different screen name a few years ago? Are you Mr George? Why not clue us in to your interest ?

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: StormJib] #97602
05/18/2016 06:54 PM
05/18/2016 06:54 PM
Joined: Apr 2004
Posts: 10,926
Macon, Georgia
GlennA Offline
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Macon, Georgia
One thing disturbs me (among others) is that there have been 3 very expensive market studies done on the airport expansion and to date NONE have been released to the public.


Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. - Mark Twain
Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: GlennA] #97603
05/18/2016 07:02 PM
05/18/2016 07:02 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 5,008
GA/NC
GeorgeC1 Offline
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Posts: 5,008
GA/NC
Just give us decent ferry service and I will be happy!!
G

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: GeorgeC1] #97604
05/18/2016 07:09 PM
05/18/2016 07:09 PM
Joined: Dec 2004
Posts: 2,276
Ill, USA
Will_L Offline
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Will_L  Offline
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Posts: 2,276
Ill, USA
Amen...all the vast majority of travelers to BVI need.

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: Will_L] #97605
05/18/2016 07:18 PM
05/18/2016 07:18 PM
Joined: Feb 2008
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Tortola, BVI
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LianeLeTendre Offline
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Will_L said:
My fear is that taxes and fees will continue to skyrocket to pay for an albatross.


Yeah ... what Will said!

I am amazed at the vitriolic and personal nature of some of the posts in this thread. Discussing the airport expansion is, of course, anyone's right, but will serve absolutely no purpose. The government is going to do what they are going to do. Nobody can stop them as they have a decided mandate from the voters and an impotent opposition.

According to government pundits, the airport expansion [color:"red"]is going to happen[/color], regardless of who among us is for or against it.

If I were going to make a prediction regarding the value and likely success of this very expensive project, I would have to say that I would join Will, George, Glenn and others on the naysayers side of the argument.

I don't believe the airport expansion will fix the woes regarding affordable or easy access to the BVI. Time always underlines truths and reveals facts. As frustrating as it may be for those of us who firmly believe this is a huge mistake, beating anyone else over the head with my opinion is more than a little egotistical. I am not going to change my mind and it is clear where Mr. or Ms. Stormjib stands. The main difference between us (aside from being diametrically opposed on this topic) is that I am not afraid to use my real name and stand behind my opinions ... publicly.

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: StormJib] #97606
05/18/2016 08:00 PM
05/18/2016 08:00 PM
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Posts: 5,533
Massachusetts
maytrix Offline
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StormJib said:
Take a deeper look some of the 'Shangri-La" is in progress. Completely tour Scrub, completely tour Peter Island, completely tour Nail Bay, review in detail the plans underway at Little Dix. The BVI is most certainly moving more upscale in a number of ways. It is not just the moorings with higher end boats almost floating condos. The Catamaran Company, Voyage, and even TMM have much higher $quality$ boats in their fleets.


Doesn't seem to be working so great for Scrub. I have yet to see a crowd there. Was pretty dead while we were there last week.

Boats are different. You can put a lot of people on them and when split among them the nightly cost is reasonable given that it is not only your lodging, but also serves as your excursions.


Matt
Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: agrimsrud] #97607
05/18/2016 08:26 PM
05/18/2016 08:26 PM
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Victoria, BC, Canada
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JD_Midnight Offline
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May be a little off topic but was wondering how many of those tourist/visitor days (300,000? - seemed like a lot) were cruise ship vs on yachts vs land based. I would have thought the yachts would make up a large portion on the non- cruise ship crowd. Thanks.

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: Will_L] #97608
05/18/2016 08:53 PM
05/18/2016 08:53 PM
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Kansas
Chriskal Offline
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Will_L said:
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StormJib said:
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invisigal said:
In order to create this high-end Shangri-La you speak so knowingly of, you would first of all have to radically decrease the cruise ship presence in the BVI, as no one spending more than the already overheated prices in the BVI would want to share the beach with the day-tripping hoards. And yet, paradoxically, the BVI isn't going in that direction. No, the "other agendas" argument seems to hold more water.

And how can you compare an island with the size, density, economy, politics and geography of Kauai with the BVI? You have a developed, American, subsidized, physically remote island, pretty much the opposite of the BVI.

And how does a "semi-retired...global...fan of boat fun" know so much more about the BVI tourist and the BVI tourism product than actual operators and owners of BVI tourism assets?

Curious and curiouser.


Take a deeper look some of the 'Shangri-La" is in progress. Completely tour Scrub, completely tour Peter Island, completely tour Nail Bay, review in detail the plans underway at Little Dix. The BVI is most certainly moving more upscale in a number of ways. It is not just the moorings with higher end boats almost floating condos. The Catamaran Company, Voyage, and even TMM have much higher $quality$ boats in their fleets.

I am not business fan of the cruise ships. The cruise ships offer the local market 50-100 bucks per passenger on the days they show up. The contracts are always short and in the cruise operators favor. From Mobile, Alabama to Grenada local governments have been out negotiated with the cruise ships who can take their built in infrastructure and go someplace else if the local government will not give them the deal that want. At the end of each cycle each location must bid for the business they think they already have.

If the BVI can get the proper airlift working and clientele to fuel better shops and dining? Those cruise ship piers could always be filled with mega yachts swapping crews and guests. Also keep in mind the cruise masses only his a few spots on some of the islands. You will not see them near Peter Island or Nail Bay.

The deep pocket hospitality operators and professionals are the ones pushing for and demanding the runway. David Johnson of Nail Bay was very clear and very public the conditions of his deal to invest in Nail Bay was the BVI was to build a new hospital, to extend the existing runway to enable direct flight access from cities like Miami and New York. The BVI was just as clear and just as public the runway will be extended somehow. Other resort professionals are just as specific on the airport requirement just not as public with the demand.

As long as other business revenue is created to replace the massive cruise ship daytrippers the ships can go away in one season or at least be replaced by smaller more elegant cruise ships and their better class of passengers. The BVI needs better shopping and eatery options along the lines of St. Barts to pull the better boutique cruise options into the docks. My vote would be the very large mega private yachts at those docks between family visits or charters. St. Martin is long out of space for that business. What is missing? Easy direct jet service from the US or what the industry leaders are calling 2.5 hour service from MIA. Flight time from JFK to St. Lucia today is 4.5 hours and soon St. Vincent will have the same option.


You are obviously the same promoter of this nonsense 4-5 years ago under a different handle Storm Jib. You were promoting at that time George's mega resort, artificial reef at nail bay and the debacle of extending BeefIsland airport .. I notice you are singularly bringing up the long gone Nail bay adventure...way gone..a BVI real estate company is renting the nail bay units and George, the promoter of the deal only you have mentioned is ..long gone . Why do you bring up that long dead project and why do you espouse the same air connection you so vociferously did under a different screen name a few years ago? Are you Mr George? Why not clue us in to your interest ?


You are 100% right. Same arguments, same condescending pedantic tone.

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: JD_Midnight] #97609
05/18/2016 09:18 PM
05/18/2016 09:18 PM
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StormJib Offline
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JD_Midnight said:
May be a little off topic but was wondering how many of those tourist/visitor days (300,000? - seemed like a lot) were cruise ship vs on yachts vs land based. I would have thought the yachts would make up a large portion on the non- cruise ship crowd. Thanks.


No idea on the ratio of boat sleepers to shore sleepers. The cruise ship passengers are not considered overnight, nor the folks who run over from the USVI for the day. Here is the data by month on the numbers of overnight visitors in hotel rooms, villas, and boats.

BVI Visitors by Month

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: StormJib] #97610
05/18/2016 09:28 PM
05/18/2016 09:28 PM
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Tortola, BVI
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LianeLeTendre Offline
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Wow,

After reading several of your posts, I was hoping you weren't who I thought you might be. I am now about 99% certain of your identity and I can only say I am really surprised and more than a little disappointed. I have always given you more credit.

You tipped your hand with this last response. Wow.

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: JD_Midnight] #97611
05/18/2016 09:41 PM
05/18/2016 09:41 PM
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Posts: 10,926
Macon, Georgia
GlennA Offline
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Quote
JD_Midnight said:
May be a little off topic but was wondering how many of those tourist/visitor days (300,000? - seemed like a lot) were cruise ship vs on yachts vs land based. I would have thought the yachts would make up a large portion on the non- cruise ship crowd. Thanks.


Actually the BVI had been averaging 380,000 overnight visitors with another 80,000 or so non-cruise day viitors. Of that 380,000, about 75% arrived via STT and the ferries. Cruise ship visits totaled a bit over 500,000 in 2014, the latest stats I can find. That will probably increase by 60 to 70% over the next few years.

BTW, including Little Dix, Peter, Byras Creek and Scrub there are less than 300 guest rooms with rack rates above $400/night.

By far the most cost effective solution to the access problem would be a modern reliable fast ferry system.

Last edited by GlennA; 05/19/2016 07:14 AM.

Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. - Mark Twain
Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: GlennA] #97612
05/18/2016 09:53 PM
05/18/2016 09:53 PM
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Tortola, BVI
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LianeLeTendre Offline
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By far the most cost effective solution to the access problem would be a modern reliable fast ferry system.


Couldn't agree more Glenn.

The addition of some modern hydrofoils (from Puerto Rico, St. Maarten or St. Thomas) would also kick things up a notch or 10 and add a certain bit of fun and excitement to travel between the islands.

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: LianeLeTendre] #97613
05/19/2016 06:38 AM
05/19/2016 06:38 AM
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There is more historical data and some professional opinion in this executive summary:

http://www.alvarezandmarsal.com/sites/default/files/ghn-market_report-bvi-03-10-15.pdf

This snip should help further understand where the plan is trying to take the BVI....

"the Rosewood Little Dix Bay is the only property that caters
to the luxury guest, a segment of the market that is currently underserved in the Territory, particularly when considering that this type of customer is less rate sensitive and more destination/service driven in their selection of accommodation."


The plan is clearly a similar or fewer number of visitors moving to a spend of closer to $2000 per day as compared to $200 per day. The DR and Cuba along with others will own the bottom budget mass travel end. The BVI will focus on the other spectrum.

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: StormJib] #97614
05/19/2016 08:07 AM
05/19/2016 08:07 AM
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LianeLeTendre said:
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By far the most cost effective solution to the access problem would be a modern reliable fast ferry system.


Couldn't agree more Glenn.

The addition of some modern hydrofoils (from Puerto Rico, St. Maarten or St. Thomas) would also kick things up a notch or 10 and add a certain bit of fun and excitement to travel between the islands.


That would be wonderful if it were possible. The reality is each of those governments have no interest in working together. The sea conditions between those islands can also be enormous. Not sure if the airlines have any interest or will to coordinate with marine transportation? There are examples elsewhere where you can check your bag and travel by rail to the airport seamlessly.

The BVI plan to success would need to start at baggage claim in STT with a greeting and escort/transport to a ferry dock on the STT property. Last I heard the STT taxi lobby and St. Thomas government wanted none of that.

One major obstacle that no one seems willing to try and overcome is the existing ferry operators low standard operational style and none hospitality enterprise culture that will never make this successful for the 21st Century traveler the BVI hopes to attack and retain. This board is filled with customer disappointment with the ferries, taxis, water taxis, credit cards, wet bags..... One would think if you do not have Kevin you are doomed. That is not going to scale or ever fly with Mrs. Got Rocks or her friends and daughters.

There is a reason why Little Dix has placed greeters in at STT baggage claim with a hassle free experience to the resort.

So the ferries hang on as the cheap bus service for the locals that some travelers will always make use of. Sort of the BVI equivalent of riding on top of the freight train. The BVI leadership will step up and build their own runway to take direct control of the BVI destiny and visitor experience. All in the modernization of the BVI health, sanitary, and transportation investment will result in +/-$500 million in bundled long term debt. That can easily be covered with +/-$25 Million a year or $50-$100 per visitor. All very doable. The only real questions are the completion dates, what other costs or agenda will get crammed in there, and what if any cost the BVI will have to subsidize AA and/or JetBlue to fly to EIS daily with at least one MIA and one Northeast cost flight each day. 600 air passengers each way each day is very attainable. I suspect there will be additional options with some planes stopping in SJU and boarding connecting passengers. What many leave out is the belongers and expats traveling off the island along with the airfreight that no modern economy can live without. Trelis Bay will be changed forever. The reality is Trelis Bay was changed long ago. The political mouthpiece and public driver for all this is Dr. the Honourable Kedrick D. Pickering. A US educated board certified surgeon born and raise in Trelis Bay. It is time to stop all the noise and get on with the work to finish the air transportation solution and jobs for the next generation. Pickering got that long ago and the all the talking brings us to only one option. Extend the existing runway into the sea to meet the 21st Century standards set by others off the islands.

Last edited by StormJib; 05/19/2016 08:09 AM.
Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: StormJib] #97615
05/19/2016 09:19 AM
05/19/2016 09:19 AM
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Posts: 3,856
South Sound Villa Virgin Gorda
tpcook Offline OP
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This report does not take into account the large amount of luxury vacation villas that have been built that many travelers to Virgin Gorda enjoy. These villas house many more travelers than Little Dix.


tpcook
Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: tpcook] #97616
05/19/2016 09:27 AM
05/19/2016 09:27 AM
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Rincón PR
casailor53 Offline
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LianeLeTendre said:
I am amazed at the vitriolic and personal nature of some of the posts in this thread.

Amen!

And as I said earlier in the thread "You sounds like some of the anti-GMO idiots who say that anyone pro-GMO is obviously a paid "Monsatan shill". People can disagree with you just because they disagree with you.

One guy says "Don't know who Stormjib is but he seems to be a business type that has a vested interest in part of this deal. Stormjib, please identify your self."

Another guy says "Are you Mr George? Why not clue us in to your interest ?"

StormJib is not Ajit George. He is a guy with a different opinion than you. Or maybe he's just explaining the government's reasoning, such as they think they are reasoning. But I can tell you one thing, he is a property owner and full-time resident of the BVI for at least 16 years, and as such, it could certainly be argued that he has more right to an opinion about the BVI than what is mostly a bunch of tourists.

Personally, I think the airport expansion is a mistake being driven by the larger properties and certain outside investors. And I agree that a real ferry is an excellent solution. But having lived in Tortola for almost 19 years, StormJib is unfortunately probably correct in his assessment of the ferry situation - too much politics with the ferry companies themselves, and the two governments.

But there is no reason to be so rude to someone who disagrees with you. Play nice.

Last edited by casailor53; 05/19/2016 01:03 PM.
Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: StormJib] #97617
05/19/2016 09:39 AM
05/19/2016 09:39 AM
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Macon, Georgia
GlennA Offline
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I find it interesting that you so easily dismiss the mode of transportation by which more than three quarters of the overnight visitors arive. True the ferry system is delapidated and poorly run but that is exactly my point! Even if the Beef Island expansion is wildly successful beyond even the most optimistic projections the ferry service will still carry half the overnight visitors. For many many reasons travel via STT will always have a price, schedule and total travel time advantage over EIS.

It is also mistifying to me that you seem to distain the middle and upper-middle class market that makes up the meat and potatoes of Caribbean tourism.


Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. - Mark Twain
Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: LianeLeTendre] #97618
05/19/2016 01:10 PM
05/19/2016 01:10 PM
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Rincón PR
casailor53 Offline
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LianeLeTendre said:
Quote
By far the most cost effective solution to the access problem would be a modern reliable fast ferry system.


The addition of some modern hydrofoils (from Puerto Rico, St. Maarten or St. Thomas) would also kick things up a notch or 10 and add a certain bit of fun and excitement to travel between the islands.


While I agree about a modern, efficient, well-run ferry system vs an improved, jet-capable EIS, I don't recall those Russian hydrofoils exactly working out in the late 90s! And I think that the potential seas would make for some pretty crappy and/or canceled trips between San Juan and the BVI or the BVI and Sint Maarten in the winter months.

Anyone know anything about commercial hovercraft?

Last edited by casailor53; 05/19/2016 01:12 PM.
Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: StormJib] #97619
05/19/2016 01:16 PM
05/19/2016 01:16 PM
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Posts: 15,683
Tortola/ Sonoma, California
Manpot Offline
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Let's put a positive spin on this..we may get a really good Chinese restaurant on Tortola to keep those workers and execs happy!

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: casailor53] #97620
05/19/2016 01:19 PM
05/19/2016 01:19 PM
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Posts: 120
Tortola, BVI
mess Offline
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It is very easy to dismiss the venture but I do think it could open up new lines of business and solve some current issues - on top of the private jet business. There are a large number of people living and working in the BVI who travel regularly for business, regardless of cost. They would continue to do so but now be able to save countless wasted hours in airport terminals. This would increase with easy access.

Also, there are no options for weekend travel (northwards)from/to the BVI other than Puerto Rico. This could potnetially open up that market. For a lot of people in the BVI, time is shorter than money. Travelling via SJU or STT is a huge time waster.

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: GlennA] #97621
05/19/2016 01:23 PM
05/19/2016 01:23 PM
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Rincón PR
casailor53 Offline
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GlennA said:
It is also mistifying to me that you seem to distain the middle and upper-middle class market that makes up the meat and potatoes of Caribbean tourism.

If you examine the trend in both bareboating and crewed yachts, there has been a constant trend upwards in the customer base involving amenities and toys. I am basing this on observations of the industry since the first time I chartered (1971) until the last time I worked as a charter captain in 2014.

I know less about vacation villas in the BVI, but having been in a fair number, I would say that this holds true for land based in the BVI, as well.

Years ago, someone in a BVI charter clearinghouse told me, "The money is made in the high-end boats." And indirectly implied that they eventually would only be rep'ing high-end boats.

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: Manpot] #97622
05/19/2016 01:30 PM
05/19/2016 01:30 PM
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Posts: 1,138
Rincón PR
casailor53 Offline
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Manpot said:
Let's put a positive spin on this..we may get a really good Chinese restaurant on Tortola to keep those workers and execs happy!


Have you been to Pearl of the Orient?

Re: Chinese company will build airport extension [Re: casailor53] #97623
05/19/2016 02:23 PM
05/19/2016 02:23 PM
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Posts: 237
Amityville, NY
RonP Offline
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I can't believe this is still going on. It's rather obvious that at least one person in this argument is a retread and he is trolling everybody the exact same way he did a year or two ago. The arguments are identical.

Stop feeding the trolls.

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