Around a week ago Rose, Ziggy and I took a drive up north to take a look a the road that is being constructed that will initially run for around three and a half miles from the Sir Barry Bowen Bridge.
We hadn’t been going long when we came to Grand Caribe and saw the progress that had been made on the new building that is being built to the south of the resort.
It looks grand (well it would do, wouldn’t it) from the outside but what’s it look like inside I thought. My inquisitiveness (some might call it nosiness) got the better of me so I sent an email to ask if there was any chance I could have a sneak preview before the official opening of this “all singing, all dancing” addition to what is already one of the outstanding developments in Belize, let alone Ambergris Caye.
I’m pleased to say that permission was granted and this morning I had the real pleasure and thrill of being given a guided tour.
Before the photo roll a bit of background information and a few facts and figures:
Grande Caribe, which is set in seven acres located at the edge of the Caribbean Sea two miles north of the core of San Pedro Town opened its doors for business in June 2010 ( around three and a half years after construction started).
It comprises ninety-three well appointed accommodations in 11 separate, very tastefully constructed buildings which between them account for twelve 1 bedroom /1 bathroom, one 1 bedroom/ 1 bathroom penthouse, fifty-one 2 bedroom / 2 bathroom, twenty-two 3 bedroom / 3 bathroom and three 4 bedroom / 4 bathroom condos. And a 5 bedroom, 6 bathroom villa if that’s what you’re looking for.
The resort already has five swimming pools with one of them featuring a swim-up pool bar, spacious, well laid out and meticulously manicured gardens, well trained and extremely courteous staff and a concierge desk that will do its utmost to satisfy your every whim.
Nothing’s that good you’re thinking. He’s being paid to write this. Does he have a condo there (I don’t but wish that I did because a one bedroom condo sold recently for US$ 415k) ? Is he a partner in one of the new businesses? Nope. None of those. I’m just recounting what I saw and the impressions I formed.
Here’s just a few of the photos I took:
The main entrance.
The view you get when you’re booking in. Not bad eh!
And after you’ve dropped off your suitcase?
Take a dip in one of the four pools.
Or a stroll around the lush and verdant walkways.
Watch the world go by at the end of the dock.
Or keep cool , inside and out, at the pool bar.
Grand Caribe is impressive and I hope I’ve whetted your appetite but what about the new stuff you’re thinking. Well I’m convinced it’s going to be equally impressive and can do nothing but materially increase the Grand Caribe experience.
The finishing touches on the new four story building are just being made.
Ground level will ‘house’ a Convenience store incorporating a Deli.
Floor markings for racking/shelving in place.
The Deli area.
Up to the first floor where you will find a 1,000 square feet fitness center which will have the necessary equipment to help you burn off any unwanted pounds you’ve managed to put on.
Currently under consideration is a membership scheme which could include use of the swimming pools and the swim-up bar.
On this floor there’s also a fully equipped, 3,000 square feet, conference centre.
With two refreshment areas.
The area is adaptable with wall dividers which will make it an ideal area for presentations, staff training and, who knows, a venue where two sides with differing views can meet to reach a compromise. No, I’m not thinking of Rose and I!
It’s when you get up to the second and third floors that you’ll probably think that use of the fitness center might become a ‘must have’. Why? Well this is going to be the “home” of Rain Restaurant and Rooftop Terrace Bar (the website is currently under construction but will be fully operational very soon – bookmark it, you’ll be glad you did).
This new restaurant is owned and going to be run by the husband and wife team , Victoria and Hugo Meyer, who many of you will affectionately remember from their time running Aji Tapa Bar & Restaurant.
Within five minutes in their company I was infected (in the nicest possible way of course) by their unbridled enthusiasm to create a dining experience “par excellence”. Their ambition quite simply is to provide their customers with whatever they want to eat. Great food. Great service. And a great atmosphere. The restaurant you leave thinking “wow”. They want it to be THE only place to go!
When I was there they were training staff but they very graciously took time out of their very busy (and tight) schedule to show me around and tell me about the type of experience they are hell bent on providing for their customers.
With a menu that they describe as world cuisine they’re aiming to have something for everyone. A wine list that boasts twenty- nine wines and champagnes from around the globe. From the very affordable to that bottle for the special occasion.
The fully air-conditioned restaurant, which is on the third floor, has seating for two hundred and fifty
Seating re-arranged for training purposes.
a chandelier no less!
But you don’t need to rush to eat your meal. No. Spend some time at the bar
and get that drink that you just haven’t been able to find!
And where are these culinary delights magicked up?
In this state-of-the-art kitchen, that’s where.
If you want a more informal, fun atmosphere you don’t have to go too far. Just take the lift to the top floor where you’ll find the Rooftop Terrace Bar. The bar with a Euro lounge feel.
And it has its own equally well stocked bar too.
This area will host a myriad of events from live music to learning to paint whilst having a drink at the same time. Don’t worry though, expert tuition will be provided by Melody Sanchez-Wolfe.
It wasn’t all taking photos and asking questions for me though. Oh no. I got to sample some of the menu items (well I would, wouldn’t I!).
For once my timing was impeccable!
I know I’ve kept you waiting long enough. You want to know what delights are on the menu don’t you. So here you are!
Look closely and you’ll find the opening times.
And how about these hand painted menus!
These are the lengths this couple has gone to in creating their vision.
Rain Restaurant and Rooftop Terrace Bar opens bright and early on Monday 1 September. Want to know what I’ll be doing? Pulling mussels from the shell, that’s what.
When you go to Rain Restaurant and Rooftop Terrace Bar do tell Victoria and Hugo that I “sent” you.
Victoria and Hugo.
The headline for today’s edition is based on the single released in 1980 by Squeeze which reached number forty-four in the UK Singles Chart.