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The History of Camana Bay

In 2017 Cayman celebrated 10 years of Camana Bay and it’s now hard to remember a time before the lively town of Camana Bay existed.

The planners of Camana Bay designed a community consisting of four villages – a resort village, residential areas, marina village and the Town Centre. In keeping with New Urbanism design principles, pathways and walkways were designed to connect residents with each other and any location in the town.

Today Camana Bay is home to 130 residents, 40 locally owned shops and boutiques, 15 cafes, eateries and restaurants and 45 offices in which over 1700 people work. With 100,000 visitors coming to Camana Bay every month, the town continues to blossom.

A Timeline

1995 - Coral Caymanian

Dart purchased the Coral Caymanian hotel on Sven Mile Beach and the accompanying 236 acres, this site would later become Camana Bay,

1996 - Dart Nursery

Long before any building began, Dart’s 26 acre nursery contained the largest collection of tropical plants in the Caribbean at the time. The plants cultivated in the nursery were later used to landscape the Town Centre.

1996-2005 - Planning a New Town

The development of Camana Bay was almost 10 years in the making. It took nearly a decade of meticulous planning with some of the world’s best architects and master planners before construction on buildings commenced. The process involved an environmental impact assessment, coastal engineering for canals, traffic studies and multiple planning applications.

2005 - Breaking Ground

Development on Camana Bay broke ground in 2005.

2006 - Opening Cayman International School

Cayman International School moved into its new campus at Camana Bay

2007 - Grand Opening

Camana Bay opens with its first office building; 62 Forum Lane and pioneer tenants, EY, Cayman National Bank and London & Amsterdam. Once month later the cinema and Books & Books opening their doors and the Town Centre was born.

2008 - Planning charrettes

Planning charrettes hosted by Dart Real Estate in April 2008 saw architects Duany Plater-Zyberk meet with the local community to gather feedback that would inform the final master planning of Camana Bay.

2010 - Governor’s Award

Camana Bay’s Town Centre was recognised for innovation and sustainability in the first annual Governor’s Award for Design and Construction Excellence.

2016 - 18 Forum Lane Opens

The first LEED Gold-certified office building in Grand Cayman opens with anchor tenants PwC moving into its new offices.

2017 - Underpass Opens

Cayman’s first underpass opened on Esterley Tibbetts Highway. Over it is the walkway known as the Rise, offering pedestrians Sea-to--Sound connectivity, taking them between West Bat Road and the Town Centre in an easy 15 minute walk.

November 2017 - Happy Birthday Camana Bay!

Camana Bay turns ten!

2018

Camana Bay announces details of its new residential development, OLEA. It will be made up of condominiums, townhomes and duplexes located to the south of Camana Bay’s Town Centre. The development will break ground early 2019 with Phase 1 scheduled to be completed in August 2020 and Phase 2 in February 2021.

Fun Facts!

  1. The firm responsible for lighting the Mona Lisa after it was reinstalled in the Louvre, L’Observatoire International, were also designed to create the lighting for Camana Bay!
  2. The mosaic in the Observation Tower mimics the experience of scuba diving Little Cayman’s famous Bloody Bay Wall, with the first level representing the ocean floor and the top reminiscent of the sun peeking through the water’s surface. It also features a double-helix staircase based on a design by Leonardo da Vinci.
  3. The Bubble Bench in Jasmine Court glows at night in azure blue, bright orange and deep sea green colours creating a sense of water ripples and air bubbles rising from the sea. These bubble benches are the only ones in the world.
  4. A model of Camana Bay was tested in a wind tunnel in Toronto to ensure the town’s orientation benefitted from the cool island breezes.
  5. The Camana Bay courtyards are named after the jasmine, gardenia, canella, heliconia and cassia plants, and have distinctly different personalities through their planting scheme and water features.
  6. There are two small, lifelike blue iguanas hidden around the Paseo in Camana Bay, paying homage to the endangered species of iguana that’s endemic to the island of Grand Cayman.