CTO News

Archive for 2017

CTO Appoints Business Development Representative for Canada

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (5 April, 2017) – The Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO), the region’s tourism development agency, has appointed experienced travel professional Nancy Drolet as business development representative for Canada.

Ms. Drolet, whose appointment took effect from 1 April, will implement the CTO’s business development plan for the Canadian market, maintain consistent interaction with the travel industry, the Caribbean Diaspora and national tourist office representatives in Canada and organise trade and consumer events, including Caribbean Week Canada, according to Sylma Brown, director of CTO-USA, Inc.

The multilingual Drolet – she speaks English, French and Spanish – is a 25 year veteran of the travel industry, having worked predominantly in sales and marketing for tour operators such as Fiesta Holidays and Thomson Vacations, and Cruise Lines, including Holland America and Windstar Cruises.
After moving to travel retail she worked in senior management positions at Sears Travel, where she managed up to 35 travel agencies.

Ms. Drolet is no stranger to the Caribbean- she worked at Sandals Resorts and Radisson Resorts of the Bahamas.
“I am thrilled to be back working with the Caribbean which has long been a popular vacation destination for Canadians. The Caribbean offers Canadians so much more than sun and sand: the people, the music, the activities on land and sea, the romance of the islands, not to mention the adventure aspect with hiking and untapped natural preserves,” the newly-appointed business development representative said.
“I am looking forward to working with our national tourist offices and our tour operator, airline and retail partners in Canada to grow our business to the Caribbean. Through training and education and partnership, I hope to help the travel trade in Canada discover more about the Caribbean,” she added.
Ms. Drolet can be reached at [email protected] Tel: 905-857-1986.
Canada, normally a robust market for the Caribbean, recorded a decrease in visitors to the Caribbean last year for the first time since 1994, and only the second contraction since 1982. The 3.3 million arrivals from that market represented a 3.4 per cent drop when compared to 2015.

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Pure Grenada celebrates 30-year partnership with British Airways

(St. George’s, Grenada) 3rd April, 2017— On April 1st, 2017 the number 30 held much significance in Pure Grenada, the Spice of the Caribbean. British Airways (BA) and Grenada celebrated 30 years of partnership and for three (3) hotels their 30 year commitment to service excellence was also celebrated. A short commemoration ceremony was held at the Maurice Bishop International Airport along with a special treat for visitors arriving on British Airways; sweet steel pan music and refreshing local beverages.

In 1987, then Minister of Tourism Hon. Ben Jones and a crowd of well wishers welcomed the first British Airways flight to Grenada commanded by Captain Doug Hudgell. The flight took 11 hours and 56 minutes landing at the then Point Salines International Airport.  Thirty years later, current Minister of Tourism & Civil Aviation, Hon. Clarice Modeste Curwen said she was happy to commemorate the significant anniversary. While there have been some changes over the years the Minister noted, “What has not changed is British Airways commitment to Pure Grenada and our warm and friendly welcome.” In recognition of the anniversary the Minister presented the flight captain with a token of appreciation on behalf of the Government and people of Grenada.

Chairman of the Grenada Tourism Authority Mr. Rodney George thanked British Airways for their partnership and congratulated the Airline for its customer service excellence. He noted, “British Airways has opened up Grenada to the UK and Europe accounting for 30% of visitors from our second largest source market.”

Manager of the Grenada Airports Authority Mrs. Wendy Williams took a step back into history looking at a centre page feature written in British Airways News in 1987. An excerpt read, “It’s not just saffron and nutmeg that make Grenada the isle of spice.  The rich blend of its warm-hearted people and tempestuous past make it an intriguing island to visit.”

BA District Manager for the Central Caribbean Mr. Nigel Blackett said his organization values it partnership with Grenada. As part of the celebrations, he noted that British Airways was providing specials on airfare to and from Grenada during the month of April. He also presented a token of appreciation to Tourism Minister Modeste Curwen to mark the special occasion.

BA Commercial Manager for the Caribbean Diane Corrie recognized three hotels that are British Airways Holidays partners and also celebrating 30 years of operation and commitment to service excellence. She handed over tokens of appreciation to Chairman of the Spice Island Beach Resort, Sir Royston Hopkin, KCMG, Managing Director of the Coyaba Beach Resort Mr. Andre Cherman and Owner of the Calabash Luxury Boutique Hotel & Spa, Mr. Leo Garbutt. Tourism Minister Modeste Curwen also congratulated the hoteliers on their contributions to the industry. British Airways now operates a twice-weekly service to Grenada.

Posted in: 2017 News, Blog, Destination News

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UNWTO/CTO Workshop Begins in Saint Lucia

The UNWTO/CTO Workshop in Saint Lucia on Sustainable Tourism Destination Management & Marketing, organized by the World Tourism Organization, its UNWTO.Themis Foundation and the Caribbean Tourism Ogranization (CTO) in collaboration with Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC), was inaugurated on 27th March by Mr. Hugh Riley, Secretary General & Chief Executive Officer, Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO), Ms. Alba Fernandez Alonso, UNWTO.Themis Foundation Course Coordinator, Hon. Dominic Fedee, Minister of Tourism, Information & Broadcasting, Ministry of Tourism, Information & Broadcasting and the facilitators of the workshop, Ms. Kathleen Pessolano and Mr. Jonathon Day.
Read more:

http://themis.unwto.org/news/2017-03-28/inaugurated-unwtocto-workshop-sustainable-tourism-destination-management-marketing-s

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SVG hosts Caribbean Sailing Festival

KINGSTOWN, ST.VINCENT AND THE GRENADINES, March 20, 2017– The Ministry of Tourism, Sports and Culture in collaboration with the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Tourism Authority, recently hosted the 2017 Russian Regatta dubbed the ‘Caribbean Sailing Festival’.

During the period March 11th-18th 2017, the destination attracted fifty-four (54) sailing enthusiasts to the shores of St. Vincent and the Grenadines. During that period, seven (7) crews took part in daily fun races and sailing quests on yachts and catamarans. The event commenced at the Blue Lagoon Marina on St. Vincent with a welcome Cocktail Reception hosted by the Hon. Minister of Tourism Mr. Cecil McKie; the seven (7) days of sailing encompassed stops at Wallilabou, Bequia, Mustique and the Tobago Cays concluding back at the Blue Lagoon Marina.

The Regatta which is into its 10th year has been previously hosted in Antigua and Barbuda, St. Maarten, St. Barts, Guadeloupe, Dominica, Martinique, St. Lucia and Grenada. During their stay the participants visited local restaurants and bars in their quest to ‘make a reality of the history of the movie “Pirates of the Caribbean” in the natural scenery’. It also sought to unite the participants and open up new possibilities for communication, connections; according to its organizers it is a clear example of tourism exchange that actively involves local industries and promotes the strengthening of bilateral relations of both countries.

The visitors had the opportunity to meet and mingle with senior representatives of the Ministry of Tourism, the Tourism Authority, Invest SVG, National Properties and the Hotel and Tourism Association. They were also treated to local steel pan entertainment as well as the destination’s Garifuna heritage through dancing, drumming and singing.

Sailing is one of the major niche markets for tourism in St. Vincent and the Grenadines attracting in excess of 40,000 visitors to the destination annually.

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CTO launches digital tourism education learning series for Caribbean primary schools

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (21 MARCH, 2017) – The teaching of tourism education in Caribbean primary school just got easier with the launch this week of creative teaching tools by the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO).

The region’s tourism development agency has introduced its first ever tourism education for the Caribbean digital learning series of four (4) e-workbooks, along with activities, videos and fun facts about the Caribbean designed for use by teachers, and students ages 6-11.

These resources are intended to encourage schools across the Caribbean to:

  • Integrate more tourism topics in their curriculum in order to build greater awareness among young students regarding what tourism entails and the significance of tourism to the Caribbean
  • demonstrate the importance of taking care of the environment for ourselves and visitors
  • inform students on how they can play a role in tourism’s success
  • showcase the many career opportunities available to Caribbean nationals
  • have fun while exploring the learning materials

“We began by creating a series of physical workbooks and a tourism module for primary schools which were used in the past by many schools throughout the region, but we felt that we needed to refresh and upgrade our materials and present them in a colourful, creative and digital manner that children would enjoy and which would help them to have better recall,” stated Bonita Morgan, director of resource mobilization and development at the CTO.

These audiovisual materials allow students the opportunity to focus on their country and the wider Caribbean, view their country and the region through the eyes of the visitors and take pride in what the region has to offer as tourism destinations.

The learning series was officially launched at the Hillaby Turner’s Hall Primary School in Barbados, the first school to have access to  the digital tourism resource materials and was witnessed by the principal, teachers and students.

“We are deeply grateful here at Hillaby/Turner’s to have this opportunity to utilize e-resources in the teaching of our pupils. These e-tourism workbooks will enhance the tourism unit of social studies currently being taught in the Class Threes, the nine and ten year olds”, said Angela Edwards, principle of Hillaby/Turner’s Hall primary school.

To watch a preview video of the learning series, click on the following link: https://vimeo.com/user58929604/tourism-learning-series

The learning series can be purchased directly online at www.onecaribbean.org, or by calling and placing the order via telephone at 1-246-427-5242.

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Tourism Officials Undertake High-level Mission to Brussels

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (20 March, 2017) – With the United Kingdom scheduled to officially advise the European Union next Wednesday of its intention to leave the EU, triggering two years of Brexit negotiations, Caribbean tourism officials recently undertook a mission to the European capital, Brussels, for a series of meetings with senior parliamentarians and officials in the European Parliament, the European Commission, the CARIFORUM ambassadors, and other key stakeholders and influencers.

The mission, led by secretary general of the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) Hugh Riley, in collaboration with president of the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA) Karolin Troubetzkoy, was held in recognition of the importance of engaging and strengthening relations with both the UK and the EU and to glean a better understanding of how this change will impact the Caribbean tourism industry, its engagement with political leaders, and its access to potential funding.

“We recognise that while the Caribbean tourism sector has had its successes – and we are certainly proud to celebrate those successes – we are also aware of the challenges which continue to stymie our growth,” Riley said. “We are aware that we have friends and willing partners in Europe who share our conviction that the future success of tourism in the Caribbean is key to creating new jobs, growth and prosperity in the region and we look forward to continue to build on the already strong relationships we have in the UK, France, Spain, the Netherlands and with the EU institutions,” he added.

Among the many areas of interest for the CTO were access to funding for tourism development programmes under the 11th European Development Fund (EDF) and future UK-Caribbean bilateral funding programmes.

The mission, which included Hon. Shamfa Cudjoe, the Minister of Tourism for Trinidad & Tobago, and Marie-Line Lesdema, the first Vice-President of the Martinique Tourism Committee, was able to determine that funds for private sector growth programmes in the tourism sector continue to be available, but that there was ever more competition for the funds; the most successful projects would be those which demonstrated their ability to deliver demonstrable development benefits.

The Caribbean team also discussed with the European Commission’s Directorate-General for International Cooperation and Development (DG DEVCO) initiatives to support environmentally sustainable tourism within local communities, along with training and education, including new possible partnerships for tourism training initiatives.

“Collaboratively, the CTO and the CHTA are always looking for avenues to maximize the economic development potential of the tourism industry to reduce the region’s unemployment, enhance our competitive position and bolster the Caribbean’s financial security. Our meetings in Brussels were an important step toward ensuring the prosperity of the region and continuity of private and public sector partnerships within the UK and EU,” Troubetzkoy said.

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CTO UK Twitter Chats 2017

Join the Caribbean Tourism Organization Twitter Chat on how to market the Caribbean during the ‘Year of Adventure’.

What are adventure seekers in search of?
What does the Caribbean have to offer?
What’s new and renewed for those who want to experience the Caribbean like a local?

The Caribbean is the hub of diversity on land or at sea, and the choice is endless!

Join the conversation on Twitter, Wednesday 22 March at 3pm UK time, to highlight what your destination has to offer in soft and thrill-seeking adventures.

Follow the conversations by using the hashtag #CaribbeanAdventure @_LoveCaribbean

Download CTO UK Twitter Chat Schedule 2017

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