The chairman and founder of Sandals has died aged 79
Tributes have been paid to Gordon ‘Butch’ Stewart, the chairman and founder of Sandals, who has died aged 79.
His son, Adam, said his father, who was born in Kingston, Jamaica and is credited with popularising all-inclusive resorts in the Caribbean, was a “singular personality and an unstoppable force”.
“Together, we have all been part of something bigger than ourselves, led by a man who believed in us and who gave us opportunities to learn, grow and the tools to make dreams real.
“For him, and because of him, we will continue to dream big and deliver on his certainty that true luxury is always best enjoyed by the sea.
“My dad lived a big life – husband, father, grandfather, great grandfather entrepreneur, statesman, dreamer.
“A singular personality and an unstoppable force who revelled in defying the odds, exceeding expectations and whose passion for his family was matched only by the people and possibility of the Caribbean, for whom he was a fierce champion. There will never be another quite like him, and we will miss him for ever.”
Karl Thompson, managing director of Unique Vacations UK Ltd, said: “On behalf of myself and my team in the UK and Europe, some of whom have worked for him for more than 25 years, we are deeply saddened by the death of our chairman and founder, Gordon ‘Butch’ Stewart. Not only was Mr Stewart a true visionary for the travel industry, but he was also like family to many of us. He had a fabulous sense of humour, was constantly there for support and always encouraged us to strive for excellence.
“Those who knew him well will know him for his larger than life personality and his pioneering ideas. Nothing was ever impossible. His determination knew no bounds and he was always striving for bigger and better things. Echoing the sentiments of his son, Adam Stewart, he was an inspiration to all of us and I can say with certainty that there will never be anyone else like him.
“Mr Stewart was so proud of what we achieved over the years and his encouragement and support was always a real source of motivation for us. He allowed us to pursue our dreams and for that, as well as so many other things, we thank him. We will keep his legacy alive as best we can, and I hope that we can continue to do him proud.
“The messages of condolence from industry friends has been truly humbling and I know he would be wishing everybody all the very best while we pull together to beat this pandemic.”
Measures to protect against new strains of Covid-19
Passengers arriving from all international destinations will be required to present a negative Covid-19 test result before departing for England, the government has announced.
Transport secretary Grant Shapps has announced that from next week inbound passengers arriving by boat, plane or train will have to take a test up to 72 hours before departing the country they are in.
He said it was to help protect against the new strains of coronavirus such as those seen in Denmark and South Africa.
Shapps said: We already have significant measures in place to prevent imported cases of Covid-19, but with new strains of the virus developing internationally we must take further precautions.
“Taken together with the existing mandatory self-isolation period for passengers returning from high-risk countries, pre-departure tests will provide a further line of defence – helping us control the virus as we roll out the vaccine at pace over the coming weeks.”