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Tourism

Barbados: Preserving paradise
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Hotel manager

Tim Morgan
As the son of a former tourism minister, Tim Morgan knows well the criticisms levelled at so-called all-inclusive resorts.

Self-contained tourist facilities are unpopular with smaller businesses, as they provide less opportunity for visitors’ money to trickle down into local communities.

But Mr Morgan says demand for them is so strong that the island needs some to keep its competitive edge.

"All-inclusives are definitely here to stay. If Barbados doesn't supply the all-inclusive packages, the tourists will find them somewhere else," he said.

He conceded that guests at his Mango Bay hotel did not dine at local restaurants as much as people at other hotels would.

But he said all of them ventured out at some point during their stay.

Mango Bay Hotel offers in-house watersports, which, Mr Morgan said, means guests are not likely to leave the hotel for such activities.

But this means he has to employ more people than a traditional hotel.

"We have a very high employee to client ratio, and I think that's quite typical amongst all-inclusives," he said.

Internationally-owned all-inclusives, particularly, have been criticised for sucking profits back to foreign shores, employing expats and importing produce rather than buying locally.

But with its high wages, import duties and well-established home-grown competition, Barbados is not a lucrative proposition for outsiders.

Mr Morgan is keen to employ locals at Mango Bay and design his menus to use produce from Barbadian suppliers.

As a member of the local community he can negotiate good deals, also avoiding import taxes - and so cutting costs further.

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