When the development history of our indigenous tourism industry is finally written, the sterling contribution of Mr Colin Pereira will be accorded pride of place within its pages.” These were the words of St. Kitts and Nevis’ Prime Minister, Dr the Hon Timothy Harris as he contemplated the life, work and contribution of the local hotelier who died in Ireland on Tuesday, August 22, 2017.
Prime Minister Harris extended sincere condolences to the Pereira family on behalf of the Government and people of St. Kitts and Nevis. He noted that the late Colin Pereira will be most notably remembered for his development of the Ocean Terrace Inn (OTI), starting from the 1960s when he converted a private family residence at Fortlands, Basseterre into one of the Federation’s signature local and award-winning hotels. The Prime Minister also made mention of the fact that although the property had been eventually sold to the TDC Group of Companies, the hotel brand remained strong and continues to hold its own as a venue for special events such as weddings, seminars, conferences and private parties.
“Colin Pereira’s name and legacy have been carefully inscribed on OTI’s property,” Prime Minister Harris stated. “The hotel’s conference room had been officially named in his honour several years ago.”
In paying tribute to the late Colin Pereira, the Federation’s Prime Minister also took time to note the consistent investment by his family in the hotel, restaurant and allied services stock of the Country. He said:
“The Pereira family’s investment in St. Kitts and Nevis has not been confined to the construction of a hotel that has become a household word. The family, mainly his sons Greg and Gary, have also demonstrated strong confidence in the local economy through the addition of investments such as Reggae Beach Bar & Restaurant on the Southeast Peninsula, and Greg’s Safaris which offers a top-rated eco-tourism experience to the rainforest and Mount Liamuiga’s Crater Lake.”
A spokesperson in the Office of the Prime Minister noted that since the passing of Mr Colin Pereira former members of staff at OTI would have commented favourably on the manner in which he operated the hotel. A number of these workers indicated that (a) he was missed when he decided to sell the hotel, and will be even more deeply missed now that he has passed; and (b) he ran OTI as a family business where staff felt and were treated like family.
Prime Minister Harris wishes the entire Pereira family God’s comfort at this difficult time, in particular Colin Pereira’s widow Lesley and his children. May his soul rest in peace.