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#48052 02/01/02 11:26 PM
Joined: Feb 2002
Posts: 32
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(Also posted elsewhere) Fountain Blue was a project designed from Day 1 to rip off the Belizean people. A businessmen (who happened to be the Belize Ambassador to Lebanon and is orignally Lebanese) got together with the Government of Belize in a cozy little pact.

He bought the land where Fountain Blue is located for $330,000US (later him and his buddies claimed that it cost 2.5 this amount)

The hotel cost about US1.5 million to build.....perhaps less. Even at this price the cost per square foot for such awful construction is too high.

The amount "borrowed" from DFC/Belize Social Security (ie. the Belizean people) was 4.5 million US! In other words, almost 3 million US was unaccounted for.

For the Grand Opening the PM, minister of finance and a bunch of other government high rankers were invited. The opening speech by the "owner" included remarks that the whole project cost US5.5 million/11 million Belize. This would have made the price per square foot of building about $600.00US!! Typical cost for first rate construction on Ambergris Caye is about $65-90US per square foot, and this place was built CHEAP.

The government even granted the owner(s) a Duty Free Concession. It is STRONGLY rumoured that the missing US3 million was used to import hardware stock for the owner's hardware stores...of course, all duty free.This was then sold to the people of San Pedro at the usual inflated prices we pay for this kind of stuff. But, no matter what happened to the missing US3 million, it is certain that it was not used on the hotel construction.

The original owner (Simon of San Pedro Hardware) handed over the paperwork of the hotel to his cousin/brother (Mike of San Pedro Supermarket) a little while ago.

As soon as THAT transaction was legal the bombshell was dropped......Mike (ie. all involved) couldn't make the payments.

So, DFC/Social Security/Goverment of Belize was in debt 3 million Belize dollars. But, of course, it was designed this way from the start. Fountain Blue was never meant to be anything but a moneymaking scam for the owners and involved individuals in the Government and Social Security of Belize.

It's not over yet. Rumour has it that a favoured government of Belize minister will likely obtain Fountain Blue at a knockdown price at'll be fixed that way. I've heard Fonseca or someone in a similar position will be the "lucky" bargain hunter.

#48053 02/02/02 02:38 AM
Joined: Sep 2000
Posts: 713
Incredible...if true.
I always take reports like this with a grain of salt unless they are SOURCED (meaning: what is the DOCUMENTATION to support the claim that these owners were allowed to borrow money from the Belizean government to build this hotel?)

Please share with us the source of your facts.

IF the facts alleged are true, it is despicable, and one of the worst examples of corruption I have heard to more example of why the people of Belize are economically doomed if they do not rise up and demand democracy, an end to control of the nation's purse strings by a small cabal of hacks, no more monopolies, the passage of a strong conflict-of-interest law, and substitution of the rule of law for "minister's discretion."

Susan Guberman-Garcia, Attorney at Law. Phone: 510-792-2639
Fax/Voicemail:: 510-405-2016 Email: [email protected]
#48054 02/02/02 08:38 PM
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 734
As a businessman and builder on A. C., I suggest we all take the report with a few pounds of salt. Anyone who actually builds moderate to upscale structures on this island are painfully aware of the cost per square foot. $100 to $120 USD minimum. If anyone says they will do it for less--hire them!!! Then hire someone else to finish it.
I think the Fountain Blue problem started when the planning board originally gave the project a permit for 4 floors-28 units.
Then the governing party changed and they recinded the permit and only let them build 3 floors.
That top floor represented the money making part of the whole project.
I assume that they were far enough along when the rules changed that they could not stop the project.
The rest is history.
I am sure the numbers worked before the newly elected town board axed the top floor.
Its all speculation anyways.
Some people can make a drama out of the trash can placements in town. Some minister probably got a free condo off of that too.
Get real!!!TrueBelize. Save your comments for an election.
There ARE real hard working businessmen and women here and sometimes shit happens.
At least I sign my comments.
Jim--Go Patriots!!!!

#48055 02/02/02 09:33 PM
Joined: Feb 2002
Posts: 32
OP Offline
T reply to your post is under the Chat section.

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