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Dart buys Little Cayman businesses

| 01/06/2016 | 50 Comments
CNS Business

A Little Cayman rock iguana sunbathing at the Hungry Iguana, Paradise Villas in the background

(CNS Business): Dart Realty (Cayman) Ltd is spreading its business empire onto Little Cayman with the acquisition of Paradise Villas and the Hungry Iguana restaurant. The Cayman Islands largest landowner, investor and developer confirmed it had agreed to buy the businesses in a release on Wednesday, in which officials also said they wanted to preserved the “quaintness” of the island and had not yet decided what the powerful conglomerate would do with its latest acquisition.

“We share the widely held view that Little Cayman’s charm comes from its quaintness and unspoiled nature,” said Mark VanDevelde, CEO of Dart Realty (Cayman). “We intend to help preserve that character for this and future generations.”

A team from Dart will work with the resort’s management and staff in the coming weeks before it closes in August for its annual break. Located on the southern coast of Little Cayman, adjacent to the island’s runway, the business were previously owned by Ken Hall.

“Although we have no immediate plans for the properties included in the purchase, we are excited about having the opportunity to explore sustainable options,” VanDevelde stated. “Our immediate priority is to gain a better understanding of the business operations and inspect the facilities.”

The release stated that the Dart family’s commitment to preservation in Little Cayman began with a donation in 2012 to assist the National Trust with the purchase of land at Preston Bay, used as a nesting area by the island’s endangered rock iguanas.

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Category: Stay-over tourism, Tourism

Comments (50)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Ken Hall does not own the runway so it is hardly likely that Dart will be closing that off. Furthermore is there anything that Dart or the Dart conglomerate have developed that Caymanians are not welcome to use? I don’t think so. Any and everything that he is does is well done and for all to use and enjoy. Most of the time for free.

  2. Anonymous says:

    What awful news.This entity has now extended its tentacles to Little Cayman. When are the folks here gonna get it? When one presence owns pretty much everything, there is no need for competition, so therefore, duh, there isn’t any. Only in Cayman could this complete numbskull stuff occur. Is Cayman going to rewrite the laws of economics? Wow!!

  3. Anonymous says:

    Who has bought Point of Sand? I hear that has also been sold.

  4. Obviously Mr Hall needed the cash – duh!

  5. Anonymous says:

    I like Dart and all he has done so far, but Little Cayman?? Really? I am so not sure about this. Why not buy the Divi Tiara and develop that, Little Cayman is doing just fine as it is. Cayman Brac could use Darts help though

    • Anonymous says:

      The Brac is a lost cause. Dart is a good business man not a charity shop.

      • Anonymous says:

        He is much more clever than the people he’s negotiating with, that’s for sure.

      • R. U. Kidden says:

        You may be mistaken. Someone has invested more than 20,000,000 dollars in building and real estate recently in Cayman Brac. Think about that!

        • Anonymous says:

          And what purpose does that alleged 20,000,000 investment mean to the Brac. Absolutely nothing as nothing local is supported except the bare necessities ie. water, electricity and work permits. Caymanians are shunned by this investor because they cannot be treated like the “slave” foreigners that she hires and fires and hires and fires and …….

    • Anonymous says:

      Little Cayman?? Really? You’re not so sure about this??? You like Dart and all he has done so far? Well let me tell you why Little Cayman. Because there is a much better chance he will have the whole of Little Cayman to himself in the very near future. THAT is Mr. Dart’s dream plan for the Cayman Islands my friend. And his dream is most certainly coming true. One business, one prime piece of property at a time does it. Nice and easy my friend. He very simply, very clearly cannot get enough and stopping him appears to be completely out of the question with the type of ‘government’ we have.

  6. Anonymous says:

    The thing no one has mentioned is that as far as I am aware, all of that property also includes the runway that services the people of Little Cayman and those who visit. What now? Will the runway & airport be revamped to fly in the elite on their private jets? If so, the “quaintness” of Little Cayman will be lost forever. And if so,will KX have to pay DART exorbitant landing fees such that none of us will be able to afford to visit? Oh dear, I wish I could be excited about this but something tells me this is another nail in the coffin for our beloved Isles Cayman.

    • Anonymous says:

      Stop bitching and get your catboat out!

    • Anonymous says:

      And it will be overrun by the arrogant Dart employees taking selfies with Mackeeva.

    • The Corrector says:

      INCORRECT! Misinformation and fear mongering.The property showing Ken Hall as registered proprietor comprises five parcels: one parcel on the eastern end of the runway and four parcels on the western end. The properties encompass under 1000 feet of either end the runway. But two ends are not much use without the middle, and therein lies the rub: the remaining land on which the runway is situated comprises seven parcels located at the middle of the runway, all owned by the immediate family and extended family of the late Captain Theo R. Bodden. I am told that some members of the Bodden family have said that Dart hasn’t the money to buy them out. Bravo for them if this is true!

  7. Anonymous says:

    What an unbelievably sad day for Little Cayman and the Cayman Islands.

    Great quote “Unless you become more watchful in your states and check the spirit of monopoly and thirst for exclusive privileges you will in the end find that… the control over your dearest interests has passed into the hands of these corporations.” Andrew Jackson

  8. Anonymous says:

    In dart i trust….
    he has done nothing but great things for cayman…..

  9. Anonymous says:

    What of those of us that wish for some quaintness to also be preserved on Grand Cayman? Will Mr Ken Dart and his mindless sheep consider not monetizing every square foot of seven mile beach please?

  10. Anonymous says:

    Little Cayman (DART) Ltd.

    • Anonymous says:

      the one thing the caymanians had that was still cayman is now sold…the only ones you can blame are the caymanians themselves selling their island stupid enough to sell don’t bitch about it now

  11. Anonymous says:

    Great news. I wish he would invest in Cayman Brac. We really need someone like Dart here. The only investor we have in the Brac is not supporting anything local but the infrastructure ie. work permits, water and electricity.

  12. Anonymous says:

    When is enough, enough. We are not a freakin’ Monopoly board!

  13. Anonymous says:

    Sit back and watch as this “vulture capitalist” picks our bones dry.

  14. Anonymous says:

    DART does not know what they are going to do yet? Yeah right!! They are waiting for The Puppet to get back in power before unveiling plans. More than likely they want to build a cruise ship dock and upgrade paradise villas to a 12 storey hotel and condo complex once the airport is moved eastward.

    The Puppet will see it thru once he is again Planning Minister.

  15. Anonymous says:

    It’s spreading like cancer and there is no cure.

  16. Anonymous says:

    The beginning of the end of our peaceful, quaint, unspoiled Little Cayman…..

  17. Please don’t change the French Fried onion rings!

  18. Anonymous says:

    Well there goes Little Cayman…

  19. Anonymous says:

    We like Paradise Villas and the Hungry Iguana as they are. Although there is room for improvement, please don’t change it too much.

  20. Bob's your uncle. says:

    Thank God, someone will finally feed that iguana that’s been hungry all these years!

  21. Anonymous says:

    Hungry Iguana will now last a couple of years then be closed – like all Dart restaurants.

    • Pray Tell says:

      Enlighten us oh great one, which restaurants has Dart ever owned?

      • Anonymous says:

        Tiki house? Home of the crappy hamburger.

      • Anonymous says:

        You are not really that ignorant, are you?

        • Anonymous says:

          10.39pm isn’t the same poster as 11.40am – Dart had an economic interest in both Michaels and Ortanique – look what happened to them? Loaded them up with operating/support costs which made it unsustainable for the restauranteurs from Miami. I’m surprised they lasted as long as they did. Who’s next?

          Plus the tentacles reach everywhere…

  22. Anonymous says:

    Hey Dart, if you don’t want people to think you’re trying to own everything, why don’t you buy stuff AFTER you have even THOUGHT about what to do with it? You know, have a rationale, other than ‘it is in the interest of Mr Dart’s business to own as many things as possible’. People don’t trust that sort of approach.

    • C Ebanks says:

      Name one successful land owner/developer who is offered land and decides NOT buy it and sit on it until he figures out what to do with it. Dart has been open and transparent about its purchase and the reason for the purchase….to help preserve the quaintness of Little Cayman. So leave it at that. If Dart turns around and spoils Little Caymn, then open your mouth and complain. Until then, give it a rest.

      • Anonymous says:

        We don’t need a conglomerate to preserve things we already have? They just continue existing… Not sure I understand you. Why does a billionaire have to buy something to preserve it?

      • Anonymous says:

        To C Ebanks, I really like your optimism and wish we could all be so hopeful about DART’s intention to ” help preserve the quaintness of Little Cayman”. Unfortunately, the track record of this developer does not lend itself to being able to believe such politically correct comment when you look around and see how he “preserved” the things Caymanians hold dear such as the confiscation of our 7-Mile beach and the destruction of our mangroves, all in the name of development. Little Cayman as we know it, just like Grand Cayman, will never, ever be the same. And I am an optimist but I also have both of my eyes open to reality. I suggest you do the same.

      • Anonymous says:

        Yuh that’s a great plan. For dart.

  23. Anonymous says:

    A sad day

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