Saturday, April 17, 2010

CAYC Saved - British Ambassador raises issue with HM

After years of intimidation, inducements, eviction notices, ancient deeds and legal wrangling in multiple courts, it seems a bit of common sense and a lot of wasta has done the trick for CAYC.

The embattled Yacht club had a meeting with The British Ambassador, Dr Noel Joseph Guckian OBE, a couple of weeks ago. The Ambassador lives in his gorgeous official residence on the cliff/ridge above CAYC and the Marina.

Photo: The British Ambassador's residence above The Marina and CAYC, ripped from Rougetete

I think its safe to assume he wasn't too pleased at the grand designs of the Ministry of Tourism for the CAYC's quiet little bay either.

Well, it seems last week, the Ambassador had an audience with HM Sultan Qaboos, and mentioned the CAYC problem, in between discussing important matters of state and topics of mutual interest.


File Photo: His Majesty Sultan Qaboos. HM signed the original deed of gift for the CAYC land.

As a result, CAYC is saved (at least for now), as long as they do some improvements and tidy up a bit.

Victory. Thanks to HM. It was that simple all along. What's crazy is that it always seems to take a personal intervention by HM to have common sense win the day.

CAYC are continuing their court cases until the rescue is confirmed and legal. Which may seem cautionary, but is sensible. MoT's grand design may well be shelved, but it won't be scrapped. They'll be back in a couple of years I'd bet.

Muscat Confidential has always been a big fan of CAYC. It's the only such club in Oman and has long been a haven for middle class locals and expats alike, who don't have military or PDO club access and want a simple, reasonably priced place to have a boat and take the family.

The 'plan' of the Ministry of Tourism to give them, in exchange, some crappy spare land at the Aviation Club near Seeb showed how little they pretend to know about tourism. The Aviation club is on the straight flat endless muddy beaches that stretch from the Crown Plaza to... Al Sawadi, and where there is nowhere pretty to sail/boat to, nowhere to snorkle, just bare sand-bottomed ocean. It is totally unlike their current protected bay, replete with rocks, good sand, Cat Island, and the sailing paradise of BK right next door. That's of course why the Tourist development would be in CAYC's bay and not at Aviation Club in the first place! LOL.

So well done Dr. Guckian.

And apologies to His Majesty on behalf of the Minister of Tourism for having had to waste your time on petty stuff like this, when you've got a country to run and everything. I guess good help really is hard to find, as they say. One might remind the Minister and her OMRAN Development arm that they seem to have an awful lot of suspended and abortive Integrated Tourist/Resident developments already on their plate...

Perhaps they could pull their finger out and invest their time and energy getting those current project done before abusing their power trying to steal other people's land for yet another development?


  1. Three Thumbs Up,,
    Best news I heard in a while..
    Thanks Dragon Dude..
    My Boat is saved,,,
    Locale who cant afford Bander Rodah.

  2. One might even dare to suggest that they also realize that there is such a thing as 'internal tourism' ........... you know the things that residents in a country do within the country that can also be beneficial to the good of the country - rather than only the monied elite

  3. Excellent!!! Couldn't agree more with your article(s) regarding the M.O.T and their greedy little paws ruining many places for locals and expats alike.

    Signed: Expat who can't afford Bander Al Rowdha

  4. Why can't i seem to comment. Damn computers!!

  5. Oh that is such good news for 'us normal people'...and long may this last outpost of affordable, unspoilt natural beauty remain unspoilt.Thanks for that snip-it of breaking news.We can all take a biiiiig, long awaited breath of fresh air again.
    Yay for the powers that be!!!

  6. such good news, it would have made another beautiful beach/water access area belonging to the 'normal' omani people and expats out of reach. surely MoT can start developing/dreaming up projects that cater to all, not just the elite. and while they are at it, what does all that development do to the natural fauna and flora in the ocean???

  7. After the update on the exciting news of the Yacht Club (well not if you are the Ministry of Tourism) news is leaking out of the seaside 12 bedroom property - Ras al Jinz .
    Mike Round-Turner, the GM of Ras Al Jinz has (not unexpectedly) resigned.
    Unfortunately OMRAN, its owner which is “currently involved in developing more than 10 resort-style projects with a project value in excess of USD $10 billion”, apparently hasn’t got a Manager within the organization to run the 12 bedrooms , but one should be in place in a month its being said by the organisation.

    Its good to learn from Omran's web site that

    “in its developments, Omran puts the needs of the local and national Omani community first, striving to work in an environmentally, ecologically and socially responsible manner” - quite.
    Omran’s attention on needs must have been elsewhere when the need for local and national Omani in depth management teams should have been discussed 5 years ago

  8. CAYC is the only place left. I hope it is kept forever!

  9. Salutations to our ever Kind and Generous HM, who understands common man problems with ease and without malice, when compared those thousands of bureaucratic brains put together.
    Kudos to HM again.

  10. The fight by the good people who make up the membership of the Capital Area yacht Club ( and their supporters ) has helped to save a valuable facility for all residents of,and visitors to, Muscat. Thank goodness they did not take the usual submissive route when confronted by the powerful and greedy. Well done, we salute you all. It is an acknowlegment of the justice of your cause that it brought together every nationallity and social sector present in Oman today. Their presence of mind, intellectual vigour, and refusal to be intimidated embodies so much of what makes this country such an exceptional place to be. Shukran

  11. Sorry my last anonymous post should have been signed "Mct resident who CAN afford Bandar Rowdha but CHOOSES NOT TO,

  12. hey dragon, i have been waiting for your reply to my mail, but seems like it is gonna take long .

    would u be kind enough to reply me,it's regarding a career move to Oman in power sector.

    I need a persons email address.and the subject of the mail is also the persons name and his email address

    I will wait for your reply if possible


  13. What wonderful news. I too have a boat at the CAYC and we love spending time at the club. Many thanks to the Ambassador and of cours to HM. I salute them both.

  14. Anonymous number 6094 seems to feel that pestering every week for somebody to do freeeeee research and that Anonymous number 6094 has an absolute right to make the demand
    in stead of Anonymous number 6094 making the effort them-self
    is the way to move forward.............

  15. Concerned about culture.April 27, 2010 at 10:08 PM

    Al Sawadi beach is crying out to be developed sensitively for the benefit of the locals and tourists soon to sample the beauties of Oman.
    This is a project the MOT should take in hand as it's a disgrace that this beauty spot is litter strewn and without a tasteful bilingual information centre or/and local park for the local families.

  16. "Concerned about culture" ......... are you are talking about the interesting news on the resuscitation of Blue City ?

  17. Hey!
    The first time I went to the CAYC was in 2003. Imagine how happy I was, after having returned to Oman just over a year ago to find the place virtually, the same. Wow! You can come to this beautiful place, enjoy a swim in the sea, have a shower, a beer and a burger. Wonderfully preserved. The only difference was that I have met so many more really neat people during this past year. I really love the place.
    Imagine my chagrin to find that the place was threatened to go the way of some of the places that I had been to eight years ago – holy smokes! That whole “Shangri-La” complex did not exist, so there have been some big changes and I was taken to that Yeti place, only to be appalled by what happened, (and did not happen) there.
    I want to say that I have been following your reports on the CAYC, and other development projects by Omran, very closely. I am very interested in this kind of thing. I am also much relieved that things at the CAYC are relatively stable for the time being. Moosa seems to think that this thing will go on for years, and he’s prolly right.
    I don’t know who you are, but I do know that dog. He’s smart, affectionate, and standoffish, the latter of which shows intelligence. I was camping over on the south end one weekend, and because my tent got too hot, one late morning after watching the fishermen and a swim in the sea, I slept in the cave. I saw the dog tracks around my tent, (unusual) and I thought, “Hey, that dog’s got the right idea!” He was right; it was nice and cool there. I hunkered down with my sleeping bag and he took off, of course. I woke up with him licking my toes. Enough of that, say I. I had already given him water, but, that was gone so I gave him some more and rolled over to face the rock face of the cave. I woke up next to see this lovely dog face looking at me. Now we are friends. He was full of ticks, so, I pulled off all I could find of the big ones and went back to sleep. The next time I woke up I had inherited a barrage of ticks, migrating over to me via my sleeping bag. Got rid of those right quick, but, still the dog was with me. I guessed that he might want some food, too.
    I left the cave, then. Packed up my stuff and went to have a beer with Ikkie. I had a hamburger, told Ikkie and Moosa about the dog and saved him, (not Moosa, but the dog), half my hamburger with fries. I could see him sitting there, in the cave, even though I had taken my tent down. I guess he knew there was more to have, (again, not Moosa, but the dog).
    Thanks for putting the word out for somebody to look after that dog, since, I think he is a Grade A Heinz. Smart and cute. I couldn’t believe it when I saw his picture on the Muscat Confidential website and surely hope somebody has adopted him, complete with tick powder. He is extremely malleable and needs tick powder and worming and training. Plus, I think he had a sore foot or bad leg from something. Could be just a thorn.
    I really enjoy your Muscat Confidential Website. Thank you so much for the time you spend investigating things and writing about them. I can only speak for myself, but would guess that your efforts are much appreciated by many.

  18. The tag "wasta" following immediately after "His Majesty" is demeaning to HM, the great benevolent Sultan of Oman.

    Please rearrange.


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