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Calvin Ayre Building $100M Antigua B(ea)CH Resort

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Online gambling entrepreneur Calvin Ayre has announced that he will be building a five-star resort in Valley Church Beach on the Caribbean island of Antigua. The cost of constructing the property, tentatively named Ayre Resort, is estimated at $100 million. When completed, the luxury resort will accept the crypto-currency Bitcoin Cash as payment from its visitors.

Map of Antigua and Barbuda

Map of Antigua and Barbuda Showing Location of Valley Church Beach in Red

More Details on the Ayre Resort

Besides 80 studio suites and 30 one-bedroom suites, the accommodations will also include several villas, town houses, and condominiums. The target demographic is upscale wellness buffs who intend to have fun while taking care of their health. Ayre doesn't envision this project as providing an all-inclusive experience. Instead, guests will use their rooms as a base to explore what Antigua already has to offer in the way of attractions and entertainment. As part of this philosophy, the facilities of the property will be open both to residents of Antigua and Barbuda as well as travelers from elsewhere.

Valley Church Beach

Valley Church Beach, Site of Planned Ayre Resort

The plan is to eventually open Ayre Resorts locations around the globe. Each one will contain an Ayre Wellness Centre and Spa along with a Bodog Casino Club and other amenities common to such destinations, like bars, restaurants, and convention centers.

Bodog is the online gaming brand founded by Ayre in 2000 with which he initially made his fortune. Bodog includes sports-betting, horse race wagering, casino gambling, and a poker room on the PaiWangLuo online poker network. Ayre actually faced some legal trouble in the past related to Bodog's policy of accepting bets from American customers, but the matter was resolved in July 2017 with Ayre pleading guilty to a single misdemeanor and all other charges being dropped.

Calvin Ayre and Crypto-Currency

Ayre stated that Ayre Resort will be funded exclusively from money he made trading crypto-currencies. The largest crypto-currency by market capitalization is Bitcoin (BTC)., the ancestor of all digital coins.

However, Ayre is a proponent of Bitcoin Cash (BCH), which was forked off the main Bitcoin blockchain in August 2017. Bitcoin Cash currently holds the #4 spot for crypto-currency market valuation. Ayre believes that Bitcoin Cash is destined to supplant its ancestor, and in fact, there's a post on entitled “When we say Bitcoin, we mean Bitcoin Cash.” Ayre and other backers of Bitcoin Cash claim that its advantages over legacy Bitcoin include lower transaction fees and a supposedly closer adherence to the original goals of Bitcoin, i.e., decentralization, privacy, and security.

Photo of Calvin Ayre

Calvin Ayre, Online Gambling Tycoon, Crypto-Currency Investor, and Businessman

Ayre Resort will accept Bitcoin Cash at dozens of point of sale terminals. Additionally, patrons will be able to use the crypto coin online to book their stays.

It's not just in his hospitality industry forays that Calvin Ayre is promoting the use of Bitcoin Cash. The poker site he founded began accepting it for deposits last year. We must note, though, that Ayre has officially retired from the online gambling firm he founded, but he undoubtedly still exerts influence behind the scenes.

Furthermore, Ayre was appointed Special Economic Envoy by the government of Antigua and Barbuda in August 2017, in which capacity he has championed the use of Bitcoin Cash. The authorities of the former British colony have also granted Ayre the title “his excellency.”

What This Means for Crypto-Currency

The dispute between adherents of the original Bitcoin currency and the new Bitcoin Cash upstart has become heated, sometimes leading to disagreements and even personal attacks. With his new investment venture, Calvin Ayre is continuing to tip the scales in Bitcoin Cash's favor. Adoption by mainstream businesses, like hotels and resorts, is seen as key to establishing legitimacy for crypto-currencies, which oftentimes don't have any actual use cases apart from trading and speculation.

At the time of this writing, the price of one unit of Bitcoin Cash is $1,419.80 while that of a single bitcoin is $11,316.60.