Archive for January 3rd, 2011

Kittiwake hits another snag

| 03/01/2011 | 29 Comments

(CNS): With winds expected to exceed 12 knots tomorrow the sinking of the Kittiwake has been postponed yet again. After seven years in the planning and endless snags and delays as a result of a number of different issues, the weather has again upset the schedule at the final hurdle. During a dedication service aboard the vessel on Monday Stephen Broadbelt from the Cayman Islands Tourism Association explained that for both environmental and safety reasons the ship cannot be sunk unless the wind drops below 12 knots. Provided the winds fall  the sinking is now expected to take place on Wednesday at 10am.(Photosby Dennie Warren Jr)

The former US naval vessel is set to become an artificial reef and will at some point be laid on the sea bed off the coast of Seven Mile Beach via a controlled sinking. The ship will be sunk as a result of holes drilled into the vessel and then lowered down on to the sea bed in a set position. Once in its final resting place nature will take its course when sea life begins to make the Kittiwake home creating a new dive attraction.

Cline Glidden represented the Cayman Islands government in Monday’s dedication service for the vessel (pictured above) which the tourism industry is pining hope on for a much needed boost. Following the service residents and visitors alike headed to West Bay public beach to hop on the free tenders to tour around the Kittiwake which is currently stationed at the location where eventually the vessel will be sunk. (Photo Dennie Warren Jr – John Glatstein, ex-crew member with Cline Glidden and Harry Lalli CITA president)


For more information on the Kittiwake visit


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New airline service boosts Canadian arrivals

| 03/01/2011 | 30 Comments

(CNS): According to the latest statistics from the Department of Tourism the start of the WestJet service appears to have provided a significant boost to the air passenger arrivals from Canada. The November 2010 tourism figures reveal that air passenger arrivals were up by 2537 on November 2009 with the largest increase being from Canada. The number of passengers flying into the Cayman Islands from that country increased by 43.1% on the previous year. There was also an increase in air passengers of more than 12% during November from the United States. Cruise visitors were also on the up with a 30% increase on 2009 figures for November.

The DoT figures revealed that 154,258 cruise passengers called on Cayman in November 2010 compared with 118,292 in November 2009. The total number of accumulated passengers arriving in Cayman for 2010 so far is now at 1,422,245 setting the scene for the best year for cruise visitors since 2007.

Although air passenger arrivals for the whole of 2010 are not likely to break any records if December has a similar percentage increase will ensure an improvement on 2009’s figures. Air arrivals also increase from Europe by over 3% and only visitors from UK & Ireland declined where 24 less people came to Cayman.

WestJet, which is a seasonal service started on 5 November and flies between Toronto and Grand Cayman three times per week.


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DoT invites all to tour Kittiwake before sinking

| 03/01/2011 | 7 Comments

(CNS): Currently anchored off Seven Mile Beach the former USS Kittiwake is now being ready for her sinking on Tuesday morning. Once settled on the ocean floor the ship will become an artificial reef and hopeful attract members of the dive community far and wide. However, before the ship is set for her final resting place the Department of Tourism is inviting the public to tour around the vessel and learn all about her history and how she has become the country’s latest tourist attraction. Tour boats will depart from the West Bay Public Dock around every 30 minutes between 2:00 – 4:00pm on Monday afternoon. Tours are free and are provided on a first come first served basis, courtesy of Cayman Islands Tourism Association.

The ship arrived in Cayman on Christmas morning and the sinking is currently scheduled for 10am on Tuesday morning.

The 251-foot, 2,200 ton, five-deck military vessel, which served the United States Maritime Administration (US MARAD) for over 50 years after it was commissioned in 1945arrived after a 10-day towing period from the James River Reserve Fleet in Virginia, USA.

A project of the Ministry and Department of Tourism in partnership with the Cayman Islands Tourism Association (CITA), the idea for acquiring the Kittiwake to create a new dive attraction for the Cayman Islands had its genesis some seven years ago. The Cayman Islands’ acquisition of the decommissioned naval vessel marks the first time that a US MARAD ship has been donated to a foreign government for the creation of an artificial reef.



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2010 saw weak returns on hedge funds

| 03/01/2011 | 0 Comments

(Reuters): Hedge funds often claim to offer strong returns that are not correlated with broader markets, but in 2010 many failed on both of those counts. That failure came in large part because hedge funds cannot make as many bets with borrowed money, analysts said. Hedge funds on average returned just 4.52 percent this year to December 28, according to Hedge Fund Research’s HFRX index. That is short of the FTSE 100’s 10.5 percent jump or the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index 12.7 percent rise. Those lower returns failed to offer the diversification that hedge fund investors crave, experts said. Nearly every hedge fund strategy tended to move in synchrony with the markets and with other hedge fund strategies this year, according to hedge fund data tracked by Lipper.

The hedge fund industry’s lackluster performance in 2010 could spur more investors to question whether it is worth paying higher management fees for the funds, experts said.

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