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Ritz-Carlton to Open Reserve on Pearl Island

Tuesday October 8th, 2013 - 9:59AM

PANAMA CITY—The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, L.L.C. is expanding its collection of reserve hotels with plans to open a luxury sanctuary on Pearl Island, a private island situated 45 miles south of Panama City. The resort is expected to open in 2016.

Co-owned by Dolphin Capital Investors and Grupo Eleta, the island is one of approximately 250 different islands inhabited by fishing communities throughout the archipelago.

The resort is the sixth planned reserve property, joining current locations in Phulay Bay in Thailand and Dorado Beach in Puerto Rico, and upcoming locations including Molasses Reef in Turks and Caicos, Tamuda Bay, Morocco and Cabos San Lucas, Mexico.

The centerpiece of the reserve will feature an open-air resort offering 80 guestrooms, a spa, private beach club, three swimming pools and three restaurants, as well as access to a marina, dive and fishing village and equestrian center. The spa will include outdoor treatment pavilions and separate tree-top villas, all of which will incorporate indigenous treatments in a remote setting.

One-and two-story villas situated on the beach will have oceanfront views, private plunge pools, outdoor private terraces.

For executive retreats, the property will feature a 1,800-sq.-ft. function pavilion and boardroom with ocean views. 

Reachable by boat, helicopter or plane through a private airstrip, Pearl Island features a private natural reserve with over half of the island undisturbed. Through an environmental stewardship program, Pearl Island's environmental diversity and recently uncovered 6,000-year archaeological relics will remain forever protected by sustainable planning and establishment of the Island Foundation, a not-for-profit organization. To ensure the island remains unspoiled, approximately 70% of the acreage will stay permanently undisturbed.

The developers of the reserve are also creating a collection of Ritz-Carlton Reserve-branded residences, which will be available for sale during the construction phase.