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Topics: America, travel

Friday, 18 November 2005

image for Sandals Set to Open New Chain of Budget Resorts in Central and South America
The Sandalnista in Managua, Nicaragua

In an obvious attempt to cash in on the budget travel craze, Sandals, the worldwide leader in romantic resorts, has announced that they are planning to open five new resorts in Central and South America by the end of 2006. These resorts are said to cater to the budget-minded traveler.
Known for their deluxe accommodations in the Bahamas and the Carribean, Sandals has long planned on expanding their enterprise into more far-flung destinations.
"With these five new resorts, Sandals hopes to tap into new markets and appeal to a wider array of tourists," says Barry Schwarzmenstein, a spokesperson for the company.
The locations of the resorts are San Salvador, the capital city of El Salvador, Managua in Nicaragua, La Paz in Bolivia, Asuncion in Paraguay, and Cayenne, French Guiana.
Though all are designed in a similar fashion, there will be noticeable differences in the atmosphere and feel of each resort.
The first resort scheduled to open is The Sandalnista, located just outside of downtown Managua. It will feature a militant, rainforest theme with green and brown army fatigue colors in the main lobby and out by the pool. Many of its employees are former members of the Sandinista National Liberation Front. Just to give it a touch of class and authenticity, these employees will wear their old rebel outfits when on the job.
"I never thought I'd have use for this goofy uniform again for as long as I lived," said Luiz Parables, Assistant General Manager and Head Pastry Chef at The Sandalnista. "It's a good thing I saved it, though," he added. "I look forward to wearing this around the hotel at night. Maybe I can pick up some young gringo chica's who like a man in uniform."
Various amenities will be offered at all of the locations, with the Asuncion location looking to be the flagship resort.
Dr Enrique Riera Escudero, the mayor of Asuncion, believes that the new resort will do wonders for the city.
"People ask me all the time 'why should I go to Asuncion?' Now I tell them why- we have Sandals," Escudero said. "This gives a major boost to our city's economy. I would even bet that this will eclipse our soccer stadium or our deluxe, high-end brothels as Asuncion's biggest cash-cow."
Sandals hopes to encourage as many local buisnesses as possible to align themselves with the resorts. Juan Diego Zapatos, a buisnessman in La Paz is very eager.
"They will open the Sandals in April right around the corner from my house. In my yard I host a live donkey show eight times a day that features my daughter, Anna, performing illicit acts with the donkey. Tourists love it. So does the donkey," said Zapatos. "I think now that we may have to do more than ten shows a day- if Anna can handle it."
Sandals is already taking reservations well into 2006 for all five of these brand new locations.

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