~ Cruise lines toured area ~
Minister of Tourism and Economic Affairs Mellissa Arrindell-Doncher, in consultation with Port St. Maarten and several cruise lines, has approved the temporary designation of the section of Simpson Bay Beach known as Kim Sha, as a temporary market and activity place for a period of 1 year, with possible extension based on the success of the pilot project.
The Minister explained that given the present circumstances post hurricane Irma, she saw the need for the designation and grant an exemption to the moratorium on Beach Activities for the section of Simpson Bay Beach known as Kim Sha, to accommodate the issuance of vending licenses. Cruise executives have already visited the location and has given their approval, in particular with activity spots on French St. Maarten still closed.
“Bottom line is we need to provide an experience for our visitors. Yes we have several tour operators that will be functioning but the cruise lines wanted more, in particular with the French side being closed,” the Minister said. This is also a good opportunity for local entrepreneurs to start their own smart business to generate some income post Irma,” she added.
Eight (8) vending stalls will be allowed to be erected on the Simpson Bay Beach (i.e. Kim Sha) parking lot for the sale of food and beverages; and four (4) vending spots for the renting of a maximum of 50 beach chairs and umbrellas per vendor.
The selection of the applicants will be done via an impartial selection committee using criteria that will be published on the government information page in The Daily Herald and on Government’s website and social media outlets. Applications should be submitted to the Department of Economic Licenses, Counter B at the Government Administration Building by Friday December 8, 2017
This is a pilot project. Therefore, licenses will be issued for a period of 1 year, with possible extension depending on the success of the marketplace and the desire of the Government of Sint Maarten to further delay the construction of the parking lot.