Chris Ryan had to leave New Hampshire and travel all the way to the Virgin Islands to interview the Paul Doumeng, the General Manager of the Bolongo Bay Resort. That’s the view of the resort where this interview took place. It’s a tough job, but somebody has to do it. The resort is an all inclusive resort with two restaurants, a beautiful pool and beach, lots of water sports, and beach activities. Chris and Paul discussed how the hotel business has been changed with the advent of Trip Adviser, Facebook, and various types of social media. During the 40 years that the Doumeng Family has been operating the Bolongo Bay Resort, they have prided themselves about being very responsive to guest comments and suggestions. So they have transitioned easily into current situation where every guest has the power of being a hotel reviewer.
The Bolongo Bay Resort is known for providing a Caribbean experience. The types of experiences which a guest may desire can vary considerably. Some guests want to enjoy the beach by sitting in a chair with an umbrella drink and counting the waves. Others might want a more active experience involving a variety of aquatic activities and toys. There are excursions and attractions in the St. Thomas area which are also available. Excursions to nearby sites and activities can also be part of your Caribbean experience. On Wednesdays, Bolongo Bay hosts Carnival Night with a Caribbean buffet, stilt walkers, and fire and broken glass walkers. Those activities will be featured in another show. A big part of the Caribbean experience is found in the Bolongo Bay’s dining opportunities. There is Iggie’s Beach Bar and Grill with a casual atmosphere and menu and with live entertainment. The menu features excellent burgers and seafood. The second restaurant also has a casual atmosphere. It is The Lobster Grill; and, in addition to the obvious, its menu also includes steaks and pastas.
After a four hour flight from New Hampshire to the Virgin Islands, you are still in the United States. No passport is required, English is the official language, and US currency is what is accepted–no calculator is required to figure out what something is worth. However, the climate and atmosphere is so very different that you can appreciate your escape from winter. Tourism is the primary industry in the Virgin Islands and the cost of living is very high because so many things have to be imported. The workers are very friendly and hospitable. You will find that the pace of life is very different than the rest of the US. Be prepared to slow down and take things at a much slower pace known as Island Time.
In the conclusion of the interview, Paul Doumeng explained how his father and other relatives came from Long Island in the 1970s to develop the Bolongo Bay Resort. Over a forty-two year period, the property has evolved into the beautiful family owned and operated hotel that it is today.