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Robert de Niro's Barbuda resort gets green light for construction

Robert de Niro's exclusive Paradise Found resort project on the Caribbean island of Barbuda has been given the go ahead for construction in the New Year. The new resort will incorporate the site of the old K Club that closed in 2004, renaming the beach after Princess Diana who stayed at the former hotel, as well as adding a new marina, air strip and public access.

Robert de Niro's Barbuda resort gets green light for construction

A new luxury resort conceived by film star Robert de Niro and Australian billionaire James Packer is finally taking shape on the Caribbean island of Barbuda. The $250million Paradise Found project will add to and redevelop the site of the former K Club resort, which famously hosted Princess Diana and shut its doors more than a decade ago.

The project was first announced in 2014 when Robert de Niro was named special economic envoy for the twin island nation of Antigua & Barbuda. The country’s Prime Minister Gaston Browne recently approved the final plans for the eco-friendly resort. A representative from Antigua & Barbuda’s Tourist Board said that after lengthy negotiations construction is set to go ahead at the beginning of next year.

The new site on the south coast of Barbuda will incorporate the old K Club and Princess Diana Beach, named after the late Princess of Wales, along with a much wider area of 555 acres of beachfront land. The main resort will have 50 cottages with private pools and a boutique eco-lodge with six overwater villas, as well as extensive hotel facilities.

The plans include the construction of a private airstrip beside the resort to service small charters and helicopters transferring hotel guests from V.C. Bird International airport on the neighbouring island of Antigua. Guests travelling to the exclusive resort will be entitled to use the VIP lounge and fast track service at Antigua’s recently-redeveloped airport and can also enjoy a private helicopter transfer to Paradise Found.

The Barbuda resort will have a new marina to accommodate up to 12 yachts, as well as a jetty and small private villa moorings. The developer has also agreed to build and maintain public bathrooms, changing rooms and car parking on the beachfront close to Uncle Roddys, with public access to the beach, a walkway between the resort and Coco Point, and public anchorage for six boats at Diana Beach. Proposals for an on-site casino are still pending approval from the local government.

The approval of the development is under the condition that the resort is sustainable and eco-friendly and that the current dilapidated structures are removed. Developers have also agreed to contribute to the island by opening a local donkey sanctuary, undergoing beautification work and turning a former government building into a museum.

The luxury complex will be one of only four hotels on the relatively undeveloped island in the West Indies, which has a population of around 1,700 people. It will join North Beach’s cottages, the luxury Coco Point Resort and the recently-opened boutique Barbuda Belle hotel. 

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