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Hamilton Princesses’ new owners want marina, breakwater

A $50 million renovation of the Hamilton Princess Hotel has moved a step closer after the resort submitted plans for a new state-of-the-art marina development that will be able to accommodate scores of boats up to 100ft long.

If given the go-ahead by Planning officials, the development — which is “designed to a higher standard of finish and service than previously seen in Bermuda” — will include an L-shaped breakwater to the south of the hotel with three “fingers” inside the protected area.

The marina will contain a total of 68 berths, including 21 slips for boats up to 25ft, 24 berths for boats up to 35ft, 13 berths for boats up to 45ft, two berths for boats up to 50ft, two berths for boats up to 60ft, five berths for boats up to 70ft and one berth capable of serving a boat up to 100ft in length.

The pier itself will also be able to accommodate tour boats, glass bottom boats and water taxis.

According to the application, which now has to go before the Development Applications Board for approval, the piers and breakwaters will be made of a combination of precast and in situ concrete structures, supported by driven piles and designed to perform as wave attenuation structures.

The western breakwater will also be designed to reflect waves away from the entrance of Pitts Bay, while a lighthouse structure will be erected on the breakwater’s southwest corner.

The circular building will house electrical equipment and contain a solar-powered navigational beacon.

The application also includes plans for the construction of a two-storey building containing marina facilities, with bathrooms and an office on the lower level, and a bar and restaurant capable of seating 120 people on the upper level.

The application, which was received by the Planning Department on April 12, said: “The marina is designed to a higher standard of finish and service than previously seen in Bermuda.

“Systems and structure are designed to accommodate very large vessels.”

Hamilton Properties also submitted a second planning application detailing a redevelopment of the hotel’s pool area, including the construction of new bathroom facilities and area landscaping.

The new development was initiated under the previous owner, Global Hospitality Investments.

But last September the flagship city hotel, which first opened its tours to well-heeled Victorian visitors in 1885, was bought out by the Green family, who immediately pledged a $50 million revamp of the Island’s oldest hotel.

“The family will continue the development plans started by GHI, which include building a marina, upgrading rooms, redeveloping the hotel’s public spaces including the pools, gardens and restaurant to increase the property’s leisure credentials, while maintaining its existing appeal to business travellers,” a spokesman said at the time of the purchase.

The resort’s general manager has also insisted that redevelopment is essential if the hotel — and Bermuda — remain competitive in an increasingly crowded market.

“The core focus is to make sure that we remain competitive and that our current offering is up to snuff,” Len Czarneckie told

The Royal Gazette in a recent interview.

“The exciting bits and pieces down the road that will unfold over time.

“Like all plans, they have to be studied and really analysed and make sure that we’re working with our partners here, and that those plans really are viable and something that can produce long-term success for Hamilton Princess.

“Any development, regardless of what shape or form that it takes, almost always brings jobs. Whether that’s for a short period of time or a sustained long period, that’s something that we would look forward to in making sure that we’re doing our part in the local economy.”

Last night a spokeswoman for the owners said they did not wish to comment on any development until planning chiefs had made a decision on their application.

But Tourism Board Chairman David Dodwell thanked the Green family for putting their faith in Bermuda’s tourism industry.

“We are very supportive of the investment that is being made,” Mr Dodwell said. “It shows a major commitment to upgrade the Fairmont Hamilton and certainly will benefit Bermuda’s overall image and facilities.

“This will create an enhanced product offering for that particular hotel and attract a new level and type of clientele, which will no doubt contribute to jobs on the Island and increased levels of tourism spending.

“Thank you to the Green family for their loyalty to Bermuda and its tourism industry.”

The Hamilton Princess

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Published April 23, 2013 at 9:00 am (Updated April 22, 2013 at 11:12 pm)

Hamilton Princesses’ new owners want marina, breakwater

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