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Episode 68

A Family Affair on Grenada: 5 Questions with the Garbutt sisters of Calabashwith Garbutt sisters of Calabash

In this episode of “5 Questions With,” Eleanore Longley is joined by Beth, Bobbie and Adele who are part of the Garbutt family who own and run Calabash, a boutique hotel on the Caribbean island of Grenada.


The Calabash story starts with a delayed flight. In 1985, Beth, Bobbie and Adele’s father, Leo Garbutt, was asked to visit Grenada by a friend with a view to purchasing a rum distillery on the island. During this trip, he met Lilian Ramdhanny, who in 1986 became his wife. Due to a delayed flight back to the UK, Leo found himself at The Calabash Hotel where he felt an ‘aura of infectious happiness’, which led him to purchase the property with Lilian in 1987.


They set to work immediately, despite never having worked in the hospitality sector and have since grown Calabash to become one of the leading luxury hotels in the Caribbean and a proud member of Relais & Châteaux.


In 2012, daughters Adele and Beth emigrated back from the UK, with Adele leaving behind her marketing job in London and Beth, fresh out of culinary school at Ballymaloe in Ireland. Both sisters are now involved with running Calabash, with Beth focused on developing the Food & Beverage, and Adele heading up Sales & Marketing, as well as overseeing the day-to-day operations. Last year, youngest sister Bobbie joined the family business to support on marketing for the hotel, whilst also becoming closely involved with the family’s organic estate, L’Esterre. She recently launched her own tree-to-bar chocolate company in the UK, using cocoa from the estate.


Listen in as Beth, Adele and Bobbie chat about the story behind Calabash and how it came into the family, life growing up in a hotel, and how Calabash’s warm and genuine service makes it so special resulting in guests returning year after year.

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