Home Commentary Open forum WHAT WILL IT BE: THE RITZ OR DONKEY DO?

WHAT WILL IT BE: THE RITZ OR DONKEY DO?

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Conde Nast Traveler magazine rates the St. Thomas Ritz-Carlton as the best hotel in the Caribbean. This primier hotel has had its suites fully booked since the Ritz-Carlton management team took over the property.
Now the Ritz wants to expand this golden goose which lays golden eggs erecting several building of suites. And one of our Senator’s is worried his donkey won’t have two separate accesses to the beach? The only thing I have seen a donkey contribute to a beach or to our community is do-do.
In 1969 my wife and I began buying our property behind Bluebeard’s beach. We were able to build our home three years later and have watched the beach cycle from low-density hotel to abandoned property to dump. Our neighborhood is disturbed, almost weekly, by rude gangs playing their tapes with gigantic amplifiers and huge speakers pointed at our homes.
I have gotten out of my sick bed and gone down to beg them to turn their music down so I could get some rest. They told me they didn’t have to pay any attention to me there was no noise law and actually turned their music up louder. We have prayed for a neighbor such as the Ritz. If our good senators really want to do something positive for our beaches and our entire community pass some decent legislation regulating noise so we can all get some rest.
Now one of the most successful businesses in the Caribbean wants to expand and assist in making St. Thomas one of the Caribbean’s primier locations, and a senator is balking at giving up a strip of road the government received for nothing nothing. A strip of road used for shootings, stripping of stolen cars, landing of illegal immigrants, landing of drugs, and dumping of garbage. The upper third of the attached picture shows the end of the paved public road. The middle third was a deep-water car trap for a decade until the Ritz filled it and cut in drainage to the pond.
When the Ritz opened I sat in on a job market – along with hundreds of other Virgin Island residents. This is one of those rare operations that produce their own electricity, make their own water, and treat and use all of their own sewage.
While our neighborhood did have complaints concerning the original Grand Palazzo generator creating noise and soot, the Ritz management addressed these problems and I have not heard one neighbor or any other Virgin Island resident complain about anything else.
This is one neighbor who hopes the governor simply signs the land transfer order and lets the Ritz get on with improving their property, the Nazareth neighborhood, St. Thomas and the United States Virgin Islands.

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