David Ames, Chairman of the Harlequin Group of Companies, the owners of the Buccament Bay Resort, has stated in a press release that Harlequin will not be held to ransom as has happened before.
In a December 15 press release, issued one day after the St. Vincent Electricity Services (VINLEC) turned off the electricity at the Buccament Bay Resort, Ames said that suppliers of the resort have already stated their clear intentions by making “unrealistic demands and disconnecting services.”
Harlequin has “therefore decided on a managed temporary closure to take place at Buccament Bay Resort with immediate effect, with a skeleton staff maintained to secure the premises,” said Ames in the release issued from the United Kingdom (UK).
The businessman, for whom authorities here issued a bench warrant back in June, when he failed to appear in court to answer charges of theft and tax evasion, said in his release that following a bitter dispute with former accountants Wilkins Kennedy in the UK High Court, on Monday December 12, Harlequin was awarded around US$15 million in damages, interests and costs.
“Unfortunately, this has come at a price. A number of sacrifices were made to enable Harlequin to pursue its strong claim, which was vigorously contested by Wilkins Kennedy, who spent around £5 million trying to convince the judge otherwise,” said Ames.
Ames said that the money won in the lawsuit would not be provided until the end of January and once there is clarity over what monies it will recover from its successful claim against Wilkins Kennedy, Harlequin hopes to refurbish the Resort and re-open under new management in spring 2017.
“Due to a succession of extreme weather events and a general disruption in services in recent weeks, occupancy is low at present, and all guests are being relocated and compensated at the expense of the Resort.
“We sincerely regret the circumstances and feel deeply for our guests and staff who have been affected, particularly during the festive season. We hope that many will return to the Resort in the future,” the release ended.