ON December 8 the Soufriere Foundation officially opened and now manages the operations at an additional entrance to the Gros Piton climbing experience through the Anse L’Ivrogne Beach.
The trail having been previously utilized by unauthorized guided tour groups, received a full aesthetics boost with the inclusion of a security and cashiers booth, the provision of bathroom amenities with other structural enhancements and the employment of fully trained tour guides to sufficiently support the growing appeal for the product.
Over the past month, the prime sales focus of the tour (Gros Piton climb), has metamorphosed into an all inclusive packaged adventure, highlighted by visitor treks to the neighbouring natural water springs.
River excursions and the sampling of culinary delights served up at the Carib Beach Bar on the Lion Zion Farm owned by Paul and Sherin Clifford have been one of the major captures for the quaint establishment. The artistically designed beach restaurant has been in active operation for the past fourteen years and amassed rave reviews by a number of visitors on the world’s largest travel site, TripAvisor.
Said Mr. Paul Clifford, owner of Carib Beach Bar: “Our guests are treated like family; they feel the freedom of not having to be confined within four walls with the amazing options of climbing the Pitons and partaking in our exquisite Amerindian dishes.”
The preserved, natural and undeveloped confines of the beach are a palatable attraction to many visitors and become a fundamental reason for the influx of foreign visitors and local beach enthusiasts over the recent weeks.
Said Mr. Jimmy Haynes, Executive Director of the Soufriere Foundation: “It gives the organization great joy in seeing the direct spinoff from the commissioning of the trail, the marrying of the different elements which make this experience truly phenomenal is paying great dividends and creating sustainable economic growth in this community.
The Anse L’Ivrogne Beach and surrounding community is rich in history, the port once served as the export depot for molasses and rum to Europe and one can still see the old ruins of sugar mills and aqueducts on the periphery of the beach property.
The Soufriere Foundation is a non-profit company located in Soufriere. Its mandate is to undertake social, cultural, human resource, tourism and infrastructure development in the Soufriere area. The organization which was established in 1993 generates revenues from its operational sites: the Sulphur Springs Park, Gros Piton Nature Trail, Comfort Center, Soufriere jetties and 88.5 Soufriere FM.