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10 Most Influential People in Secret Bay’s History

Every visitor, guest and supporter of Secret Bay has been a special and integral part of Secret Bay’s evolution, and we are pleased to highlight 10 individuals who have made Secret Bay all it is today. Continue reading to learn about their stories and how they have helped Secret Bay flourish over the last 10 years. 

The Enablers

​​1. Phillip Nassief – Gregor Nassief’s Father

Phillip Nassief, the father of Secret Bay’s founder Gregor Nassief,  was the spark that made Secret Bay possible. Gregor shares,  “As a 12-year old boy, I free climbed the cliffs at Secret Bay and dreamt of owning and living on these lands one day.   In my late 20s, I learned that my father owned a ½ acre of land at Secret Bay.  I immediately asked him if I could buy it. He agreed and had paid $9/sq. ft. for the land; he sold it to me for $7/sq. ft. That was Dad – he wanted us to take nothing for granted but was always generous.  And there began the story of Secret Bay.”

2. Fruto Vivas – Sandra Vivas’ Father

Fruto Vivas, the father of Secret Bay’s co-founder Sandra Vivas, was one of the first architects and designers to share his vision for Secret Bay. As a wedding gift to Sandra and Gregor, Fruto gifted the first drawings of the vision for land, which became the first seed of what Secret Bay has become today. 

Original Drawing of Zabuco Villa by Fruto Vivas

The Builders

3. Daniel Guastella

Daniel Guastella is the original gardener and landscaper at Secret Bay. Daniel has been part of the local Tibay community and has lived on the land before Secret Bay was born and before pipe-borne water was available in the community. Daniel planted the first bougainvillea cuttings at Secret Bay and has climbed the hills with buckets of water to nourish the plants himself. Daniel has played a crucial role in developing the landscape and planting thriving native plants that truly make Secret Bay one with nature.

4. Alistair Grell

Alistair has been Secret Bay’s engineer from inception. He has brought Secret Bay’s vision of being one with nature to life through his work and has continued to play a crucial part in Secret Bay’s evolution.

5. Claude Lauture

Claude has been Secret Bay’s on-site architect since conception. In the early days, he worked with Alistair and has continued to flourish, starting his own architectural firm. Claude has made our design visions come to life, creating villas that blend effortlessly into the jungle around them.

6. Abo “Mike” Shama

Like Daniel, Alistair, and Claude, Mike has been with Secret Bay from inception, and, along with his crew, has led the timber works of Secret Bay’s first build as well as every expansion since, and continues to do so today.

The Above & Beyonders

7. Gilbert Panthier

Gilbert has been with Secret Bay for 10 years and started as a Security Host at only 20 years old. Year after year, Gilbert continued to grow in his role moving up the ranks as a Purchasing Officer, then a Driver picking up guests from the airport, then a Maintenance Technician, then a construction supervisor, then Facilities Manager, and most recently promoted to Group Facilities Manager, which includes the Fort Young Hotel & Dive Resort. Gilbert is truly a model of perseverance and Secret Bay is lucky to have worked together for 10 years.

The Believers

8. Honourable Dr. Roosevelt Skerrit

Honourable Dr. Roosevelt Skerrit, Prime Minister of Dominica since 2004, has been a strong supporter and true believer in the magic of Secret Bay since the beginning. Prime Minister Skerrit attended Secret Bay’s opening ceremony in 2011 and has continued to support Secret Bay as a prime investment for Dominica.

9. John & Cathy Hanna

John and Cathy Hanna were early guests of Secret Bay, and the first guests to show real interest in owning a villa at Secret Bay. Now, proud owners of two lots and 4 soon to be completed villas on the clifftop, John and Cathy continue to be prime examples and supporters of the evolution of Secret Bay.

10. The Didier family

The Didier family owned 9 acres of beautiful coastal land adjoining Secret Bay that was
needed for the expansion of Secret Bay’s Clifftop and Summit zones. After learning about Secret Bay’s vision, the family agreed to sell the land and also invest in a villa estate at Secret Bay. Secret Bay would not be what it is today without their belief in what we were doing.

The team at Secret Bay is forever grateful for every guest and supporter who has made an invaluable contribution to our journey over the past 10 years. We look forward to the next 10 years together. 

Start planning with the help of Secret Bay’s Travel Concierge today. Simply email [email protected] with your ideal travel dates and you’ll be surrounded by nature in no time.

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