The announcement that time is running out for Maho Bay Camps has galvanized hundreds of the eco-resort's fans. But so far, none has stepped forward with millions of dollars to buy the property.
Instead, Maho Bay lovers have turned to the Internet and created several groups on Facebook.
- Let's Save our beloved Maho Bay Camps is the biggest with 325 members.
- Save Maho Bay Camps – A Guest-Led Ecotourism Preservation Effort has 43 "likes".
One of the organizers posted a mesage saying, "We have a meeting set up for June 15 with a lawyer who specializes in non-profit law and land acquisitions to discuss possible methods of incorporation for a group devoted to our cause."
"We have (also) reached out to Board of the International Ecotourism Society to raise awareness within that community." There have also been conversations with Maho Bay management, John Garrison (Trust for Public Lands), Joe Kessler (Friends of the Virgin Islands Natl. Park) and Mark Hardgrove (Superintendent of Virgin Islands Natl. Park)
On the Vinow St. John forum Bareboat1 suggested direct action." One simplistic idea is this: If we could find 23,000 people to pitch in $1,000 or 230,000 people to pitch in just $100 each (you get the idea) then we could buy and save Maho Bay Eco Camps."
Ellen Stahl Parker, on Facebook, wrote, "It just doesn't seem right that no one organization or person with environmental conscience has stepped forward to save Maho."
6 thoughts on “Legal help sought to save Maho Bay”
Can’t help but wonder why Ellen Barker doesn’t step forward to save Maho Bay Camps. Or how about 2.3 billion people donating 1 penny.
Just say goodbye to Maho Bay as it is today, and accept that this is the price of Capitolism and development.
Throughout the Virgin Islands, these dynamics have played out with the same result: the primitive beauty is replaced by developed properties.
Environmentalists who lobby our government all the time aren’t really in the business to save something if it means they don’t get to profit somehow through subsidies. But, occassionally a wealthy person buys land to protect it like Rockefeller has done. Land owners have the right to sell their land. If someone has the wealth to perserve Maho and donate it to the NPS it may become something fans don’t like, a truly natural place where all are welcomed to visit, but can’t stay there. Or, it could become a national park campground. But, a true environmentalist would want it to go back to nature meaning no places to stay, no tents. So, I think the fans really don’t want to preserve the land in the true sense, but preserve the resort they enjoyed staying at. That’s okay too. Meanwhile, there are those who would rather donate their hard earned money to feeding and clothing human beings. It’s all in what is a priority in people’s minds. Not judging, just an observation of perspective.
I think this is just grand standing on the part of the Maho Camps owners. If you remember, we already went through all this drama a couple years ago. And what happened? The camp stayed open for another year or two. By trying to sway public sentiment, the owners of the for profit Maho Bay Camp are mounting this public guilt-trip on the land-owners. It worked last time and will probably work this time, too, thanks to the shi*ty economy. The land owners are off their rocker to think they will ever get 23 million for this mosquito infested, hard-to-get-to, small beach land. If Stanley just treated the land owners right and paid them what is truly owed them and not take them to court, Stanley could operate the Camp for as long as he wanted to. But by not paying the landowners their fair share on the occupancy of the employee tents and then hiring legal guns to fight the much poorer landowners, does not endear Stanley to the land owners or the local West Indian population, who most would rather see the land owner win. Ultimately, Stanley does not want to cough up the 23 million for the land, even though he could. He is hoping someone else will cough up the money and allow him to continue to run his ‘business’ at Maho Bay the way he always has, with virtually free labor and New York hotel rates for a ‘tent’ and a shared bathroom about 50 steps away. not a bad business plan at all! If you doubt this is true, visit Stanley at his Park Avenue penthouse or Florida coast home ala Derek Jeter. Just sayin’.
I hope you are wrong about your assumptions, though sadly you are probably spot on. Maybe a “group” should speak to the owners with respect while donning beach wear rather than a bunch of charltans in business suits