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Dominica to host 1st Caribbean Aviation Meetup Conference

(Roseau, Dominica – May 24, 2016) The government of the Commonwealth of Dominica through the Ministry of Tourism and Urban Renewal and Discover Dominica Authority will host the first CARIBBEAN AVIATION MEETUP Conference in Dominica from June 14 – 16, 2016. 

The CARIBBEAN AVIATION MEETUP is made up of well thought out program sessions and affords generous opportunities for dialogue among professionals. Most of the conference program will be discussions on changes for improved airlift in the Caribbean and its impact on tourism and the economy.  It will also provide impetus for new business developments and industry investments.   The three day program includes a wide range of topics such as regional airlines, route development, airport development, airlift impact on tourism and the economy, investment considerations, trends in regional travel and tourism, innovation of product, service and infrastructure.

From plenary session on the morning of the opening day, the program will have 2 simultaneous break-out sessions ensuring that there is always a session to attend for anyone’s particular area of interest.  The invited presenters have a wealth of knowledge on their areas of expertise and participants are encouraged to share perspectives, ideas, concerns, and successful strategies.  The detailed conference program and agenda can be found at www.caribavia.com/program.htm.

Registration is now open online at www.caribavia.com for regional and international participants. Interested participants residing in Dominica should contact Discover Dominica Authority at [email protected] for registration information.

About Caribbean Aviation Meetup: CARIBBEAN AVIATION MEETUP shall be the Annual Conference of the CARIBAVIA.  During the first CARIBBEAN AVIATION MEETUP (June 2016), a new Caribbean Aviation Industry Association will be inaugurated. It shall carry the name CARIBAVIA which stands for CARIBbean AViation Industry Association. It shall be an umbrella organization representing all aviation interest in the Caribbean region.  For more information visit www.CaribAVIA.com.

For more information on Dominica, contact Discover Dominica Authority at 767 448 2045. Or, visit Dominica’s official website: www.DiscoverDominica.com, follow Dominica on Twitter and Facebook and take a look at our videos on YouTube.

Posted in: 2016 News, Blog, Destination News

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Grenada wins gold at RHS Chelsea Flower Show with ‘Three Enchanting Islands – Pure Grenada’

(St. George’s, Grenada) 24th May, 2016 – The Grenada exhibit at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2016 named ‘Three Enchanting Islands – Pure Grenada’ has won Gold. The Show team was led by Grenadian-based designer Catherine John and brought Grenada, Carriacou and Petite Martinique to life with a display of floral diversity.

“Our theme this year was inspired by the distinct floral character of the three islands, which although in close proximity of each other in the Southern Caribbean Sea, do not receive the same amount of rainfall. The vegetation and crops grown on Carriacou and Petite Martinique are markedly different from those that thrive in Grenada,” said Mrs. John.

The greenery and spices were all grown in Grenada and arranged to Catherine’s design, ahead of Monday 23rd May when the display enthralled Press Day visitors including Grenada’s High Commissioner, His Excellency Mr. Karl Hood and Dr Johnson Beharry VC – recipient of the highest military decoration for valour in the British and Commonwealth armed forces, who was born in Grenada.

“As small islands we are mindful of rising sea levels due to climate change, and our display features the coastline as a reminder of the balance of nature that we all depend upon,” added Mrs. John.

The display won a gold medal, making this the twelfth gold medal Grenada has received at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show.

“We’re delighted that the exhibit has been awarded Gold here in London. My personal inspiration this year comes from just wanting to differentiate and display the diversity of plant materials on our Sister Isles,” said Catherine after receiving the news.

“Grenada, Carriacou and Petite Martinique are three distinctive islands that each boasts a remarkable natural landscape. The design team has captured the essence of all three islands to provide visitors to the world’s greatest flower show with an authentic taste of Pure Grenada, the Spice of the Caribbean,” said Ms. Sharon Bernstein, Grenada Tourism Authority Director of Sales for the UK & Ireland.

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St. Kitts & Nevis Partner Golf Classic targets the affluent golf market

Basseterre, St. Kitts (May 11, 2016) – The St. Kitts Tourism Authority partnered with LINKS Magazine, a premier golf lifestyle publication, to present the first annual St. Kitts & Nevis Partner Golf Classic. The event was hosted from May 3rd to 7th, by the world-class Four Season Resort Nevis and featured tournament rounds on both the Robert Trent Jones II course at Four Seasons and the Royal St. Kitts Golf Club course.

At the event’s awards ceremony, held at the Mango Restaurant on Friday, the Hon. Lindsay F.P. Grant, Minister of Tourism, International Trade and Commerce, said that golf tourism is a very important element of the overall tourism strategy for the destination. The Minister thanked LINKS Magazine, for their continued support in increasing the awareness of St. Kitts’ golf resorts and events in the U.S. Market.

“This is an important event for our destination marketing efforts as we begin to promote St. Kitts & Nevis as a world-class, twin-island golf destination,” said Minister Grant. “With two more championship courses scheduled to open on St. Kitts at Kittitian Hill and Christophe Harbour, we are becoming well-positioned to grow the market for golf tourism to our islands.”

The St. Kitts & Nevis Partner Golf Classic is a tournament for couples who enjoy the spirit of friendly competition and playing a different partner golf format each day. Attendees visited St. Kits and Nevis from seven different US states. The Overall Champions of the first annual St. Kitts & Nevis Partner Golf Classic were Cheryl & Dale McLean from Wyndermere GC in Naples Florida.

The St. Kitts Tourism Authority presently partners with LINKS Magazine, a golf media platform with a high-household income readership of more than 500,000 across its print and digital assets, to generate targeted awareness and travel consideration in the U.S. market among affluent golf enthusiasts.  LINKS is a sophisticated and engaging publication that helps golfing enthusiasts fuel their passion for the game and enjoy the golf lifestyle in new and stimulating ways. In 2014, LINKS Magazine included St. Kitts & Nevis in its newly created ranking of the Top 25 Islands in the world for golf travel; one of just seven Caribbean islands to earn a spot on the list.

The St. Kitts & Nevis Partner Golf Classic presented by LINKS Magazine is managed by TGC Sports LLC based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. For more information on golf in St. Kitts, visit www.golfstkittsandnevis.com.

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SLJAF 2016 records a number of firsts

Castries – (May 09, 2016) – Early indicators are telling a story of a number of successes achieved from the staging of the 25th anniversary celebration of the Saint Lucia Jazz & Arts Festival. Among these are record attendance on each night of the mainstage events, sold-out venues well before gates opened, the vision for the infusion of the Arts being more fully realized and unprecedented levels of accommodation occupancy in the north of the island.

Deputy Director of the Saint Lucia Tourist Board (SLTB), Tracey Warner-Arnold, reports that ahead of the analysis from event surveys and the Festival’s exit survey which will give a more comprehensive assessment of the various operational aspects, lineup satisfaction, visitor arrivals and patronage, a number of clear indicators have emerged which validate some of the choices and decisions made for the Festival this year.

“Well ahead of the opening of the gates for each mainstage event, we exceeded ticket sales from our best prior years,” Mrs. Arnold said. Numbers to date show at least 1,000 more patrons consecutively at Pigeon Island Mainstage Saturday and Sunday in 2016 over the year 2010, which until this year, recorded the highest level of patronage ever. According to the SLTB Deputy Director, this kind of success is gratifying and encouraging and highlights the attractiveness of the lineup and the effectiveness of the festival marketing.

In his analysis of these numbers, Director of Tourism Louis Lewis said it validated the line-up as one that could achieve three essentials, namely commemorate a world class journey, bring the sing-along dynamic for Mother’s Day, and cater to a range of tastes while also remaining true to the foundational jazz roots of the Saint Lucia Jazz & Arts Festival.

On the strength of public opinion recorded via social media and event patronage, the 2016 Arts Component is described as having exceeded expectations.

“The Arts component for us has been the crowning glory of the Festival because in three short years we were able to demonstrate the vision we had for a Festival that is authentic to the destination in all its cultural and creative dimensions, and not one that resembles or patterns itself from any other,” explained Director of Tourism, Louis Lewis. In his assessment, the close SLTB and Cultural Development Foundation (CDF) partnership adds a value to the Festival which will be felt for years to come as an ideal model where a credible, colourful and compelling Saint Lucian aesthetic is infused into the Festival. According to Mr. Lewis, the visibility and educational value which the CDF/ SLTB collaboration achieved with respect to three national heroes – Sir Derek Walcott, Virginia Alexander and Sir Dunstan St. Omer – are significant because the Festival must also be evaluated in the context of sectoral development, and growth opportunities for Saint Lucian Artists and Artisans.

“These three icons epitomize the excellence of Saint Lucia’s literary, artistic and dance product. They are the bar, and creating a space within the Festival to tell their stories, showcase their journeys and celebrate their achievements does much for education and national pride.’

This year, the Arts infusion included a two night run of Sir Derek Walcott’s Omeros by Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, the Cultural Icon Series tribute to dance legend Virginia Alexander and the erection of an Arts Village which, according to the SLTB Director, served the aim of making the Arts a core part of the Festival programme, a model which will continue for the years to come.

Posted in: 2016 News, Blog, Destination News

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Bahamas to Test Undersea Weddings Record

FREEPORT, Grand Bahama – A wedding campaign geared towards breaking the Guiness Book of World Records in undersea weddings was officially launched on Wednesday, May 4, 2016, at a press conference at the Grand Lucayan resort, the proposed site for the event next year.

In Deep Love Bahamas Limited, a Bahamian destination events management company, has scheduled the event to take place on February 14, 2017, Valentine’s Day, in Grand Bahama. Organizers hope to break the standard in the Guiness Book of World Records for undersea weddings, which is currently set at 34, by having 50 couples participate.

Alfred Collie Jr., creator and organizer of the campaign, notes the event will not only foster destination weddings, scuba diving and ecotourism in The Bahamas, but showcase the waters while bringing focus to their conservation.

“We are working to achieve a number of objectives by bringing couples from around the world to marry in the turquoise, crystal clear waters of The Bahamas. We also hope to unite the Bahamian people and the world behind a novel concept that brings immense international attention to ocean conservation while at the same time creating the ultimate wedding photo ops and memories.”

Director of Romance for the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism, Freda Malcolm, said “The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism is very excited about the ‘In Deep Love’ wedding promotion and fully endorses it. We have already received a huge amount of media interest from around the world, on the coverage of this great event, including news organizations from the United Kingdom, Brazil, France, Canada, and the United States of America.

“The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism has been aggressive, deliberate and innovative in its marketing initiatives to promote the Islands of The Bahamas as the premier wedding destination in the world.”

Betty Bethel, Director of Tourism for Grand Bahama, added that they were pleased Grand Bahama was chosen for this event. With the island being a ‘nature-based destination,’ it is the ideal location.

The Caribbean Tourism Organization has declared 2016 the ‘Year of Romance for the Caribbean’ and in November 2015, the Islands of The Bahamas were named the “Leading Wedding Destination” at the World Travel Awards in Morocco.

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His Imperial Highness Prince Selassie enjoys Jamaica’s culture

Selassie 2MONTEGO BAY, JAMAICA – May 4, 2016 – HIS IMPERIAL HIGHNESS PRINCE SELASSIE  ENJOYS JAMAICA’S CULTURE -His Imperial Highness (HIH) Prince Ermias Sahle-Selassie, Haile Selassie’s grandson, of Ethiopia and his spouse, Princess Saba Kebede were recently in Jamaica to participate in 50th anniversary celebrations of his grandfather’s Emperor Selassie’s visit. During his visit, HIH Prince Selassie enjoyed aspects of Destination Jamaica’s multifaceted tourism product. Above HIH Selassie (second left) and Princess Saba Kebede (second right), with Maracas in hand, enjoy the cultural presentation of the Hatfield Cultural Group at Meliá Braco Village. The couple also toured the Rose Hall Great House.

Selassie

His Imperial Highness (HIH) Prince Ermias Sahle-Selassie of Ethiopia (left), also met Dmitri Kosvogiannis (right), General Manager, Melia Braco Village with the ‘Star of David’ gesture. The gesture is a symbol of Rastafarianism, a religious movement that began in Jamaica, which honours Emperor Haile Selassie as its leader. HIH Prince Selassie, is the grandson of Emperor Haile Selassie and was in Jamaica for the commemoration for the 50th anniversary of his grandfather’s visit to the island.

Posted in: 2016 News, Blog, Destination News

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Antigua & Barbuda expects more Caribbean tourists for 60th Carnival Celebration

26 April 2016 – (St. John’s, Antigua) The Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority and the Antigua and Barbuda Ministry of Tourism will host a chain of Carnival Roadshows across the Caribbean as Antigua’s Carnival – The Caribbean’s Greatest Summer Festival approaches its 60th year celebrations from July 22 – August 2, 2016.

The initiative, which involves partners from the Department of Culture and small hotel properties on the island, promotes the hotels’ special summer offers and also encourages Caribbean travel to Antigua for the summer festival.

Regional Marketing Manager at the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority (ABTA) Charmaine Spencer said, “Our Caribbean arrivals reported for the year to date have grown by 41%.  The roadshows are a strategic move to build critical relationships with our travel industry partners within the Caribbean, encourage travel around Antigua’s signature and emerging events, and see further growth in Caribbean visitor arrivals as we move into the summer months.”

“The roadshows give us the opportunity to bring the excitement and festiveness of Antigua’s carnival and the warmth and friendliness of our people direct to the consumer, and issue a personal invitation to the persons we meet to visit Antigua and Barbuda.”

The roadshows which started last weekend in Trinidad included five days of consumer promotions at Trinidad’s major shopping centres, Trincity and Gulf City mall and sales presentations to the largest tour operators in Trinidad, such as Haygem Co. Ltd, Lazzari & Sampson Ltd, and Amrals Travel, as well as smaller travel agencies.  Down the line interviews were also conducted on radio 94.1 BoomChampions in Trinidad, radio Power 102, Wac Radio and Gem Radio.

Spencer said, “The Trinidad roadshow was a resounding success for those twenty-three small ‘intimate’ hotels of Antigua & Barbuda, with property representatives interacting with hundreds of mall patrons to directly sell and promote their hotels, as well as, collect information for their databases. It was a great experience for many of the properties including some from Barbuda, who received an opportunity to promote their hotels outside of Antigua and Barbuda.”

Shoppers were entertained by carnival masqueraders, and steelpan music and were able to receive information on hotel pricing and enter raffles to win holidays to Antigua.  The summer specials can be viewed on www.visitantiguabarbuda.com

The Trinidad Roadshow delegation included, Compliance & Accommodations Officer in the Ministry of Tourism Dulcie Looby-Greene, Product Development Officer for Barbuda in the Ministry of Tourism Veneta Burton and Director of Culture in the Ministry of Trade Sports Culture and National Festivals Vaughn Walter.

The Trinidad promotions will continue with the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority offering the grand prize for the ‘Smother Your Mother’ promotion with radio 94.1, which is a prize of a weekend trip for two inclusive of flights, airport transfers and hotel accommodations. The draw for this promotion will take place for Mother’s Day.

The next Carnival roadshow is expected to take place in Dominica.

The Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority has already held prior sales visits in the islands of Guadeloupe and Puerto Rico.

Posted in: 2016 News, Blog, Destination News

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