Royal Caribbean is considering acquiring the decade-closed Xanadu Beach Hotel in Freeport, Bahamas as part of a project to build a resort and water park destination.
The company is also interested in purchasing land parcels stretching the surrounding area. No official deals have been finalized; however, talks between the property owners and Royal Caribbean are ongoing and may lead to a formal purchase offer.
It is estimated that Royal Caribbean might acquire a 40-50 acre site through this potential acquisition. This indicates that the company is possibly near to finalizing an agreement for transforming Freeport Harbour after years of negotiations with Freeport Harbour Company.
The cruise line’s interest in the Xanadu Beach Hotel is also said to involve its premium line, Celebrity Cruises. The plan could include shared use for both Royal Caribbean and Celebrity Cruises.
The news tracks what Celebrity’s CEO Laura Hodges Bethge said about future destination plans for the line during a preview sailing of Celebrity Ascent, ending with, “More on that later….”
This is the second site Royal Caribbean has looked at developing on Grand Bahamas Island. Royal Caribbean previously aborted acquiring the Grand Lucayan Resort for $65 million because of the cruise industry shutdown.
The Xanadu Beach Hotel, currently listed for $30 million, was established in 1968 and once hosted famous personalities like Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr., Cary Grant, and Dean Martin.
The 184-room property has been closed since 2011. In addition to the hotel, the potential acquisition includes a 75-slip marina and more than 20 acres of land in strategic locations.
In April 2023, Grand Bahama Port Authority’s president announced that the Freeport Harbour deal involving Royal Caribbean, ITM Group, and Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) was being targeted for completion in October 2023.
On a recent earnings call, Royal Caribbean’s president and CEO expressed optimism about the joint venture and upcoming developments in Freeport. The company intends to increase its capacity in the region, with the $70 million Freeport Harbour deal being the first phase.
The company recently announced they are expanding the Grand Bahama Shipyard in Freeport, Bahamas, which they co-own with Carnival Corporation and Grand Bahama Port Authority.