From GoToCayman.com - the Wiki for Cayman
News from Cayman - 2000
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Just recovering from two weeks in Cayman over Xmas and the New Year. Some observations/pointers to share with others.
The start of December was very wet - heavy rains and flooding. This has led to an increase in the mosquito population. They are trying to treat areas, but as one of the main treatments is best when rain is guaranteed, expect higher levels of mosquito nuisance until then.
The bad weather has had some side effects. The beach at the Marriott is starting to recover - about 8 foot of sand in front of the sea wall. If you go diving with Red Sail, they take you out to the dive boat in a little tender as the beach is to shallow for the dive boats to come up!
A school of dolphins was reported off Seven Mile Beach - 6 adults and two calfs. One of the Red Sail divemasters managed to get in the water briefly, but they steered away, so guess aren't likely to become a feature of the island :-(
Cruise ships had to drop passengers at Spotts on several occasions in December as sea conditions were so bad around George Town.
As New Years Eve was on a Sunday, it wasn't until the last few days that agreement/licences were granted to restaurants/establishments. Certainly a lower key celebration than in previous years.
Building of the Ritz Carlton in proceeding at a snails pace!
A new Mall has opened on the waterfront, featuring an aquarium (approx 30foot x 10foot x 6foot or 12,000 gallons) which houses some sharks and local tropical fish. Shark feeding takes place twice a day!
Some excellent Christmas lights on houses in the South Sound area. The most impressive has to be the Crighton residence as you enter Spotts. Apparently it takes them two weeks to install all the lights. If there is a chance of rain, then they don't unveil all of the displays as apparently some of them are irreplaceable.
Given the state of their beach (or rather lack of beach), The Marriott have made arrangements for their guests to use the pool and beach at the Westin at the other end of Seven Mile Beach. A shuttle bus runs between the hotels every hour.
Once again the Marriott beach has suffered severe erosion, this time from the recent waves associated with hurricane Keith. This time last year, artificial turtle grass mats were installed in the hope that they would protect the beach from the erosion experienced after high seas in previous years. The recent waves have loosened the mats, and caused litter problems of thousands of plastic strips along a wide stretch of Seven Mile Beach and some down on the south coast of the island. The cleanup is being coordinated by the Marriott in association with the Department of the Environment.
A new Civic Centre has opened in Gun Bay. The centre is named after well-known Gun Bay resident Captain Elliott Connolly. The facility is primarily intended to serve the district as a general use activity hall and hurricane shelter.
A new library has opened in Bodden Town. It is using the building that was the areas former health clinic. Facilities include meeting and study rooms.
Following the publication of an advert in the Caymanian Compass, Cable and Wireless have blocked access to Net2Phone, as it infringed the license agreement between Cable and Wireless and the Cayman Islands Government.
A new modern post office has opened to server the East End of Grand Cayman.
Sunset House has announced plans to place a 9 foot tall bronze statue of a mermaid in the sea about 100 yards from the sure. The placement will be made in November 2000. It will become a focus for divers and snorkelers alike. For details see http://www.sunsethouse.com/.
A new Corporate Business Centre, Island Offices, has opened overlooking the harbour. Facilities include fully functional and complete professional and executive offices that may be rented by the hour, day, or longer, as well as a full-size, fully equipped conference room. Services offered by the staff include secretarial services, immigration consultation, temporary and permanent staff placement, company incorporation, and an internet access service centre. For further details check out their web site at http://www.islandoffices.com.ky/
Driving to/from the Seven Mile Beach and West Bay area has just got easier. Not only is there an extension of the Harquil Bypass to take some of the traffic, but the West Bay Road has been resurfaced, removing all the potholes, and so making for a smoother and faster ride.
Cayman Airways has started a weekly service to Honduras. Should it prove popular, flight frequency is likely to increase. Delta Airways have announced that from mid-December they will have flights twice a week between Cayman and New York JFK.
Plans are under way to re-open the Wholesome Bakery, under new ownership, but with the same baker. It is likely to be located in the Industrial Park near the airport.
For the third year running, the Links at Safehaven has been voted best golf course in the Caribbean. This was announced at the sixth annual Caribbean World Magazine Awards ceremony.
Fancy diving with sharks? Cayman Diving Lodge have started a once-a-week dive to watch reef sharks - for more details see http://www.divelodge.net/SHARK_DIVES/SHARKS.html.
The Turtle Farm have started a new interactive release program. Twice a week you can pay for the experience of choosing and releasing a turtle into the wild. Contact the Turtle Farm for details.
Good news for visitors from North America with mobile phones. Phones that are compatible with 800MHz Analogue or TDMA digital networks can now roam in the Cayman Islands. See the Cable & Wireless page at http://www.candw.ky/Tourist/roaming/roamingfs.html for details.
Cayman's first private hospital officially opened its doors to patients at the beginning of May. The 18-bed, state of the art facility is owned by one of Cayman's most respected physicians; Dr. Steve Tomlinson. The hospital is named after his late mother; the Chrissie Tomlinson Memorial Hospital. As well as hospital staff physicians, a number of private medical doctors have offices within the hospital compound. In addition to regularly scheduled medical services, the hospital will offer urgent care for an individual in crisis, with an emergency doctor on premises 24 hours a day.
Construction work has started on the expansion of Morritt's Tortuga Club and Resort. There are plans to develop and expand the resort over the next 5 years. A new Hard Rock Café opened in George Town on Friday 28th April - the 104th in the world.
After many years on the waterfront the Wholesome Bakery has closed down. I used to enjoy their Jamaican Patties; guess I'll have to find a new source :-(
The new Comfort Suites opened on Valentines Day. It comprises 110 suites and apartments with eat-in arrangements.