Beach Clubs in Barbados: A Tainted History

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The social issues that island nations face is something that does not receive publicity. When I was in the Cayman Islands, locals and expats alike gave accounts of the friction between those from the island and those that now called it home.

Along the beach in Barbados are private yacht clubs and beach clubs that say “members only.” ‎The one to the right of the Radisson is the Barbados Yacht Club. It is an uppity establishment with a tennis court and members who look like their other country club is a golf course in Bushwood. If you’re not a member there, you’re not allowed to order a drink or use the barge located a few meters in the blue ocean. TPOL violated the rules and swam out to record this video.

I went to the Barbados Cruising Club. Anyone is welcome to join and those that are not members do not have to pay a premium to go in. All you have to do is sign in the guest book. I asked a local about the Barbados Yacht Club, and he informed me that it was started by the British and it limited its membership to whites only. According to the local, it began accepting everyone in 1965, but from what I saw the club was not very diverse.

Although it was not as overt as South Africa, there is racial tension. It is something that tourists choose to ignore. It’s much easier to come to the island, take in the sun, have a drink, and pretend that you are in paradise rather than acknowledge that problems exist.

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