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Hotelier: Faltering US dollar major cause of hard times

Cheryl Harewood

Hotelier: Faltering US dollar major cause of hard times

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HOTELIER GORDON SEALE says a “weakening” United States dollar is a major contributor to the “hard times” in Barbados.
And Seale has told management and staff of Bougainvillea Beach Resort, where he is chairman, that he doesn’t expect those times to improve before seven to ten years.
“You may not realize it, but a major reason why things are more expensive every month is that the United States dollar is losing value, making commodities more expensive. Since the value of our dollar depends totally on the value of the US dollar, the value of our dollar is also going down,” he told his staff.
The hotelier added: “Hard times will be with us for several more years. How many? No one knows. I would guess at least seven to ten years.”
Seale was addressing the hotel’s annual staff awards and cocktail party recently.
He said that “things continue to be tough all over the western world” and that all the countries from which most guests arrive “are having difficulties”.
 “This is becoming more and more obvious to us every day. To avoid massive layoffs the United States, government has been printing massive amounts of new money, referred to as quantitive easing,” he said.
The hotelier also spoke out against the ecash-for-gold trend in Barbados, describing it as “a huge problem for locals and tourists alike” and one which “could affect the number of visitors coming to the island”.
He said this problem could be controlled by enforcing the new “precious metals act” which required purchasers to hold the gold for ten days and have police inspect the items.
 “The choice is up to us. If you make enough noise about this nonsense, then action will be taken,” he remarked.
“I have spoken to The NATION and the Barbados Hotel Tourism Association, but you can help. Visit your Member of Parliament and tell them it’s not good enough. Write a letter to The NATION. Tell your friends this must be stopped. Call Brass Tacks,” he advised.  
General manager of the South Coast hotel Sharon Hugh-White congratulated staff for their commitment, dedication and delivery of excellent service.
Hartley Wilkinson of the Maintenance Department took the 2012 Employee of the Year Award; Rick Walrond (Maintenance Department) was named Manager Of The Year,  and Dwight Crawford took home the Supervisor Of The Year Award.
The Housekeeping Department headed by Avril Clarke was also in the winner’s circle, copping the Department of the Year title, while Ria Taylor won the Top Performer Award.
Other awards went to Margaret Moore-Bostic  (Motivation Award); Sue Hurley (Congeniality Award); Stephen McCollin (Guest Service Award); Ian Blackman (Initiative Award) Beverley Moore-Walrond and Kelly Brown (Most Improved Worker); Wayne Alleyne (Taxi Driver of The Year); and Roxanne Austin-Best (Restaurant Employee Of the Year).