Diamonds International opened its doors in Barbados in 1997, starting with our first store located on Broad Street. We later expanded to the Barbados cruise terminal and key hotels on the south and west coasts. Introducing luxury to the west coast, which surprisingly was not accessible before, marked a significant milestone. Subsequently, Limegrove Lifestyle Centre was established, solidifying Diamond International’s commitment to luxury spaces. This expansion included not only our main brand, Diamonds International, but also the introduction of our in-house exclusive diamond brand, the Crown of Light. We heightened the luxury experience with the establishment of the Breitling Boutique and the Cartier Boutique, both of which are internationally recognised brands.
From inception, Diamonds International has been driven by the vision of being a company that actively contributes to our community. This commitment to giving back was evident right from the start, marked by the initiation of the Diamonds International Substance Abuse Foundation Charity Golf Tournament in 1997, which supports in raising awareness on substance abuse and funds various causes, including the construction of the Verdun House.
Another noteworthy charity golf event is our Diamonds International Rotary Club West Charity Golf Tournament, co-founded with the Rotary Club West of Barbados, with over 18 years of consecutive annual tournaments interrupted only by the pandemic. Throughout the years, this remarkable collaboration has raised substantial funds exceeding $2.5 million to support various noble causes in Barbados. Notably, these contributions facilitated the original refurbishment of the Paediatric Ward at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH), the enhancement of the Medical Intensive Care Unit and establishing the Renal Dialysis Unit, providing free dialysis services to the Barbados public. Other initiatives supported include the Ellen Steinbok Hearing Project, focusing on providing free hearing tests and treatment to approximately 2,000 children in primary schools in Barbados and aiding at-risk youth through the Nature Fun Ranch. Our scholarship fund continues to grant scholarships to students facing financial challenges in attending the University of the West Indies among other impactful endeavours that have left a lasting mark on the community.
Broadway to Barbados stands as a testament to our dedication to philanthropy, co-founded by Robert & Mary Ellen Bourque, and Jacob & Michal Hassid, with Diamonds International as the leading benefactor. This cherished event has earned a permanent spot on the calendars of many. Each year, an international cast, led by the esteemed award-winning composer, lyricist, and producer Neil Berg, brings a fresh theme to life. Beyond its charitable cause, Broadway to Barbados consistently draws sold-out audiences, with beloved performances making triumphant returns. The event has even witnessed the spontaneous, heartfelt performance by none other than world renowned musician, Sir Cliff Richards, who was deeply moved by the production. Corporate Barbados has also rallied behind this cause, not only through ticket purchases, but also by generously contributing to the silent auction.
At Diamonds International, we believe in being an integral part of the community and giving back whenever possible. We extend our wholehearted gratitude to the many companies and individuals that consistently support these charities. Their contributions are invaluable, and without them, our achievements would not be possible. This generous support underscores the collective commitment to making a meaningful impact.
As we look ahead, our journey of giving remains unwavering. We are deeply dedicated to continue our charitable efforts, creating a positive impact that resonates far beyond our stores, shining a light into the hearts of our community.