China Group to Build Caribbean Resort, Track

Racetrack at multibillion-dollar resort will have facilities for 1,000 horses.

An affiliate of the China Horse Club has signed an agreement with the government of Saint Lucia to develop a $2.6 billion resort and lifestyle complex on the Caribbean island, including a racetrack.

The "Pearl of the Caribbean," slated to begin construction in 2017, is under the banner of DSH Caribbean Star Ltd., an affiliate of Hong Kong-based Desert Star Holdings Ltd. Desert Star also includes the China Horse Club, which since 2012 has grown rapidly in international racing.

China Horse Club is particularly focused on the development of racing in mainland China and will hold a race meeting Aug. 21 in Ordos, Inner Mongolia, in conjunction with the China Equine Cultural Festival there.

The planned Saint Lucia facility, to occupy a 700 acre site to the south of the island, according to a joint announcement from the government and Caribbean Star, will have facilities for 1,000 horses and the capability to handle racing festivals, "establishing Saint Lucia as a racing and entertainment center in the Caribbean."

The signing ceremony capped three years of negotiations and followed the creation in January of the Saint Lucia Citizenship by Investment Program. It also provides for upgrading of the island's international airport, which is located about a mile from the "Pearl of the Caribbean" site.