By Alexander Britell
AMResorts is expanding to the French Caribbean for the first time.
The company’s Secrets all-inclusive brand is coming to St Martin with the signing of a new resort brand management deal.
The resort, which is owned by Sole Rseorts, had been previously operating as a Riu before Hurricane Irma.
“[Parent company Apple Leisure Group] is continuing to grow its brand footprint in the Caribbean by expanding into the highly marketable destination of St. Martin, which welcomes millions of international travelers each year,” said Zozaya. “We are confident that the island has the potential to become one of the region’s premier high-end destinations, making it the perfect location for our luxury all-inclusive brand, Secrets Resorts & Spas.”
The former Riu Palace St Martin will undergo a $20 million renovation designed by Luis Pons before it reopens in 2019, according to the company.
The 350-room adults-only resort is set on the beautiful Anse Marcel in St Martin, about 35 minutes from St Maarten’s Princess Juliana International Airport.
“This partnership with Sole Resorts demonstrates ALG’s ability to successfully convert existing resorts into one of our award-winning brands and deliver an attractive return on investment for owners,” said Javier Coll, Executive Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer of ALG. “We continue to see high demand for the Caribbean and anticipate this will only increase, making it the ideal time for owners to ensure they have the right resort management partner to position their properties to maximize the demand.”
The renovation will also add a rooftop pool with ocean views, along with swim-out suites and other enhancements.
“We discovered St. Martin right after hurricane Irma damaged the island. Immediately, we recognized the untapped potential of the Island for 5-star luxury resorts,” said Tommaso Sandretto, CEO of Sole Resorts. “With the support from President Gibbs and Apple Leisure Group, we are confident that our investment will benefit the growth of the island and the whole community creating new jobs and showing how to bounce back from natural disasters. Sole Resorts plans to keep expanding its portfolio in the Caribbean and other key markets.”