Caribbean resorts - With King Sugar dethroned, St Kitts seeks golf tourists
Released on = April 21, 2007, 2:09 pm
Press Release Author = GolfPublisher Syndications
Industry = Media
Press Release Summary = A walk through St. Kitts\' rainforest Valley of the Giants. Golf and travel info at CaribbeanGolf.com
Press Release Body = By Tim McDonald, National Golf Editor, Golf Publisher Syndications
ST. KITTS (April 19, 2007) - It is possible to drive around St. Kitts and take in all of the hope, promise and economic tragedy of more than three centuries.
St. Kitts and Nevis were in the sugar industry for 360 years. King Sugar has been the very core of the islands\' existence - the basis of their economy, shaping the population and even the physical landscape.
Now, the cane fields stand lush and untended - the ones that haven\'t been burned, that is. No workers come to harvest the cane; no trucks deliver it to the factory. The green, healthy fields stand a living monument to changing times.
St. Kitts, once the center of the British sugar trade in the West Indies, harvested its final cane crop last year. The end of European sugar subsidies to African, Caribbean and Pacific states, coupled with the inefficiency of state-run sugar companies, caused a massive upheaval for the crop that once drove Caribbean economies.
\"It was more than just a job to us here in St. Kitts,\" Agriculture Minister Cedric Liburd said I a speech marking the final harvest.
\"Every one of us has had a personal relationship with King Sugar in some way: Our parents, our families, our friends, our neighbors in some way have all been touched by King Sugar. It was our way of life.\"
St. Kitts will now rely mostly on tourism to feed its people. The island expects an infusion of some $17 billion over next 20 years. Plans are afoot for new resorts, golf courses, racetracks, casinos and like enterprises designed to lure sun- and fun-seekers from the U.S. and Europe.
Naturally, there are fears that the island\'s terrific natural resources, including coral reefs and rainforest, could be put at risk.
The coral reefs of both St. Kitts and Nevis are exposed to the usual degradation from development-driven coastal construction, such as sewage discharge and siltation. Officials and conservation groups are doing what they can to limit the damage.
The rainforest appears to be better off. As the source of much of the island\'s drinking water, it has a much more visible impact on Kittians\' everyday lives. It has been officially protected for more than 100 years, though it isn\'t exactly hands-off: Residents are still allowed in to gather fruit and cut hardwood for firewood and fish traps.
It will also attract tourists. A recent tour showed why.
For more details visit - : http://www.caribbeangolf.com/features/st-kitts-nevis-king-sugar-resorts-4870.htm
April 20, 2007 Any opinions expressed above are those of the writer and do not necessarily represent the views of the management.