Cuba: Jardines del Rey welcomes first tourists after Hurricane Irma

By Ortelio González Martínez, November 4, 2017

(GRANMA) – The joint effort among tourism workers, several agencies of the central government of the State and the non-state sector made the unimaginable in such a short term reality: the recovery in little more than 40 days of most of the facilities of the “Jardines del Rey” destination, severely damaged by Hurricane Irma.

The entry into operation of the first 7,400 rooms, of the 8,028 available in Coco and Guillermo Cays, allowed us to start the winter season 2017-2018 with a renewed and high standard product, in most places, higher than they had before the cyclone.

At an initial stage ten facilities opened on both islets and before November 15 will do the rest, including the five-star hotel Pullman Cayo Coco, badly damaged by Irma and the first destination in management contract with the French chain Accord .

Iyolexis Correa Lorenzo, delegate of the Mintur in Ciego de Ávila, said in a meeting with the press, that this is the answer to the call of Army General Raul Castro, President of the Councils of State and Ministers, to restore in the shortest time the damages caused by Irma that, in the case of this tourist destination, also includes the return to vitality of all extra-hotel activities: marina, dolphinarium, beach restaurants and the Rocarena climbing center, one of the few facilities in Jardines del Rey that did not suffer damages.

Days before, the journalist Hortense des Dorides, in the Canadian portal www.paxnouvelles.com, had written: “The ravages caused by Irma in the Avila tourist destination have been converted into opportunities to improve the conditions there. From the remodeling of the facades, the modernization of the interiors of rooms, to the construction of new sunbathing stations».

Although it had already received some flights, the Jardines del Rey International Airport, which will be 15 years old on December 24, returned to its usual operations, with a Cubana flight from Canada, the largest sender of tourists to that destination; for its part, the Canadian airline Transat announced the arrival of the first flight from Montreal on November 15.

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