CTO News

Archive for May, 2018


NEW YORK, NY (25 May 2018) – Vibrant colours, authentic cuisine and Caribbean fashion will be on display in the Grand Ballroom at the Wyndham New Yorker Hotel as five Caribbean American designers and an exceptionally talented Caribbean chef will be featured during the Caribbean Tourism Industry Awards Dinner and Fashion Show on Thursday, 7 June 2018 from 6:30 p.m. – 10:00 p.m. as part of Caribbean Week New York 2018 (#CaribbeanWeekNewYork2018, #CWNY18) hosted by the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO).

Rejuvenation – A Caribbean American Fashion Showcase will feature industry veteran Malchijah Hats from Guyana, d’Marsh Couture headed by Jamaican designer Glenroy March, Haitian fashion designer Berny Martin’s CatouWear, and high-end women’s brand apparel Fashion Sixty4’s Samanta Samuel from Trinidad and Tobago. The fashion show will be presented by JLC PRoductions, in association with EventsWorks and TSD Image.

“For decades, the Caribbean has been a source of inspiration to fashion designers, movie makers and other artists globally, however, the creatives of the Caribbean have yet to capitalize, en masse, in their own vibrant creativity. Surely in this Year of Rejuvenation, we should all agree that the time has indeed come for the Caribbean to shore up its sustainable diversity and as a region, create economic empowerment through cultural development,” said Janice Lawrence-Clarke, Founder CAFE – Caribbean American Fashion Exchange™.

The event will also feature the culinary masterpieces of Barbados native Chef Jason Howard. Chef Howard is marking his place in history as a modern Caribbean chef as he infuses the flavours of his native cuisine with French cooking techniques to create stunning, balanced, and thought-provoking dishes, known for vibrant colours and diverse textures.

“Coming to New York to be a part of a celebration of Caribbean food is testimony to my belief that our cultural influences have taken root in international cuisine and fine dining,” said Howard, adding “This should be inspiration for upcoming Caribbean chefs to express themselves using the ingredients, techniques and flavours which first sparked their passion for food.”

“CTO is committed to continuing to showcase the great cultural talent of the region, through food, music, fashion and many other expressions,” said Sylma Brown, director CTO-USA. “Caribbean Week is an important and perfect platform for destinations to seamlessly highlight the authentic and complex nature of the region. CTO is grateful for the opportunity to share with the world the work of a few of many of the region’s savvy designers and chefs during Caribbean Week,” Brown added.

Caribbean Week New York 2018 will have a special feel this year as the Big Apple’s 8.5 million residents get a taste of the re-energising and rejuvenating power of Caribbean wellness. During the week-long event (3-8 June), the wellness theme will be incorporated into many activities, including a trade show and educational forum for travel agents on how to sell the Caribbean as a wellness destination. Registration details for all events can be found at http://www.onecaribbean.org/events-calendar/cwny-2018/.

About Caribbean Week New York

Caribbean Week New York is the largest regional tourism activity in the New York area. Artists, performers, celebrity chefs, the Diaspora community, investors and other strategic partners join government officials, tourism stakeholders and the media for a week of festivities, raising awareness for the Caribbean’s diverse tourism industry and provide opportunities. Member destinations will have the opportunity to promote their individual products and services, participate in meetings, seminars and other business development activities to further enhance the Caribbean brand, and provide updates and critical support to the travel agents and media who influence key travel demographics in the region’s #1 source market.

Caribbean Week is supported by: Academy Engraving, American Express, Anguilla, Anse Chastanet & Jade Mountain, Antigua & Barbuda, Arrivalist, Islands of the Bahamas, Barbados, Bloomingdale’s, Caribbean Airlines, Cayman Islands, Cholula Food Company, Cititech Solutions, Club Med, Delta Air Lines, Doctor’s Cave, Dominica, Empire State Building, GoGo Vacations, Grace Foods, Grenada, Haiti, Half Moon, Jamaica, JetBlue, Ka’ana Resort and Spa, Manhattan Beer Distributors, Martinique, Saint Lucia, Seaborne Airlines, Sheraton-Puerto Rico, Sugarcane Restaurant, Travel + Leisure, Travel Impressions, TripAdvisor, Unique Vacations/Sandals, West Indian American Day Carnival Association (WIADCA), and William Sonoma. Media Sponsors: Meredith Travel Group, UBC Network, and Zee TV.

To participate in, or sponsor any Caribbean Week New York event, visit www.caribbeanweek.com; email [email protected] or call (212) 635-9350.

CTO members receive special concessions when they participate in Caribbean Week New York. To find out more about membership visit http://bit.ly/alliedmembers or email [email protected].

For more information on the Caribbean Tourism Organization, please visit www.OneCaribbean.org and follow CTO on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn to be part of the conversation.

Posted in: 2018 News, Blog, Caribbean Week

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Caribbean Week New York Travel Agent Trade Show & Educational Forum Highlights Wellness Tourism

NEW YORK, NY (29 May 2018) – Travel and tourism suppliers, agents and distributors will come together at the Caribbean Tourism Organization’s (CTO) Trade Show and Educational Forum for Travel Agents as part of Caribbean Week New York 2018 (#CaribbeanWeekNewYork2018, #CWNY18). The event for travel professions is by invitation only and will take place Tuesday, 5 June 2018, from 5:30 – 9 p.m. at the Wyndham New Yorker Hotel (481 Eighth Avenue).

Tying in with CTO’s “Year of Wellness and Rejuvenation” for 2018, the high-profile event is themed “Selling Wellness Travel” and will showcase why the Caribbean is the premier region for health and wellness – practices that have become increasingly important in societies around the world.

“Destinations, hotels and other suppliers are enhancing or shifting their products to appeal to a wellness-conscious affluent demographic and travel agents must position themselves to benefit from this trend,” said Sylma Brown, Director, CTO-USA. She added, “According to the Wellness Global Institute, between 2013 and 2015 the wellness industry grew at a faster rate than any other industry and wellness tourism is on a trajectory to become an $800 billion industry by 2020. Travel agents must capitalize on this market share to ensure their continued success.”

Event attendees will get insight into this market segment from Sandra Ramani, senior contributing editor, Organic Spa Media Ltd. Celebrating her tenth year with the publication, Ramani has been covering spa, beauty, wellness, travel and lifestyle topics for over 18 years. Previously she served as a spa/beauty editor for New York Magazine and as editor-in-chief of Premier Traveler magazine.

In keeping with CTO’s objective of providing travel agents with the tools that will help keep the Caribbean top-of-mind when discussing travel options with clients, this forum will feature several Caribbean destinations sharing information on their diverse wellness products – a market segment that can present significant financial rewards for agents who are knowledgeable and able to develop packages that appeal to a wider audience of well-connected discerning affluent travellers.

The event is designed to give suppliers and destination representatives the opportunity to highlight what is special about their product and share relevant information, tips and trends with travel agents who work with leading tour operators with a heavy concentration on Caribbean travel.

“During the trade show and educational forum, public and private sector exhibitors will showcase the diverse product that currently exists in the region which explains why the Caribbean should be a major player in wellness tourism,” noted Brown.

Travel agents will hear from representatives from Antigua and Barbuda, Islands of the Bahamas, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Caribbean Airlines, Club Med, Dominica, GoGo Vacations, Grenada, Jamaica, Martinique, Saint Lucia, St. Vincent & the Grenadines, Travel Impressions and Unique Vacations/Sandals and Beaches.

Further solidifying the importance of this event for both agents and suppliers, more than 80 specially selected qualified travel agents from databases of the top-producing tour operators for Caribbean travel have registered for the event. Only a few slots are still available.

“Judging by the enthusiasm of the agents that have registered, travel agents look forward to receiving exclusive insight and tools from industry experts which they can use to sell Caribbean vacations to their clients,” said Brown. “We encourage suppliers to register for this high-demand event to network with travel agents and ultimately, keep their product at the forefront.”

Participation fees for exhibitors are $995 (government members); $1,045 (non-government members); and $900 for small hotels (under 50 rooms).

For more information or to register to exhibit, click HERE.

Caribbean Week New York 2018 will have a special feel this year as the Big Apple’s 8.5 million residents get a taste of the re-energising and rejuvenating power of Caribbean wellness. During the week-long event (3-8 June), the wellness theme will be incorporated into many activities, including a trade show and educational forum for travel agents on how to sell the Caribbean as a wellness destination. Registration details for all events can be found at http://www.onecaribbean.org/events-calendar/cwny-2018/.

Posted in: 2018 News, Blog, Caribbean Week

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Dominica Launches ReDiscover Dominica Campaign

Roseau, Dominica – (May 28, 2018) Dominica, The Nature Island of the Caribbean, has launched its “ReDiscover Dominica Campaign” to encourage travelers to visit the island. Visitors, friends of Dominica, and Dominicans can enjoy discounts on a trip to the Nature Island and, in doing so, help the country on its path to recovery. Dominica was hit hard by Hurricane Maria in September, 2017.

Tourism officials have been working closely with key industry players to reaffirm Dominica’s position as a desirable Caribbean destination. The destination is rebuilding and it is a great time for nature lovers, meaningful travelers, adventure seekers, leisure travellers, wellness enthusiasts, educational travelers and others to visit The Nature Island. The ReDiscover Dominica Campaign will offer deals on hotel accommodations and on-island activities to attract travelers.

The ReDiscover Dominica Campaign will run in all of Dominica’s major source markets including the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, France, Germany, Caribbean and French West Indies. The promotion features one free night on a minimum four-night stay at nine participating hotels. Guests can book four nights, yet pay only for three.  To qualify for the free night, interested visitors must book between May 24 to July 31, 2018 using the promo code DOM2018 and travel between July 1 and December 15, 2018.  Adult visitors age 18 and over will be entitled to US$100 spending money in the form of coupon vouchers redeemable at fifteen participating vendors and participating hotels. On island activities include dining, car rentals, horseback riding, island tours, underwater experiences, spa services and duty-free shopping. The campaign will be promoted digitally on all Discover Dominica Authority online channels and on regional and international trade partner’s platforms.

Visitors are encouraged to book through their respective tour operators within their geographic location or book directly with participating hotels on the campaign website.

For more information on Dominica, contact Discover Dominica Authority at 767 448 2045. Or, visit Dominica’s official website:www.DiscoverDominica.com, see Dominica’s updates on the tourism sector post Hurricane Maria: www.dominicaupdate.com, follow Dominica on Twitter and Facebook and take a look at our videos on YouTube

Posted in: 2018 News, Blog, Destination News

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Kittitian and Nevisian University Students Contribute to CTO Hurricane Relief Fund

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (23 May, 2018) – Students from St. Kitts & Nevis pursuing studies at the Cave Hill campus of the University of the West Indies in Barbados have thrown their support behind the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO)’s ongoing efforts to help Caribbean families and countries recover and rebuild after last year’s monstrous hurricanes Irma and Maria devastated some member destinations.

The St. Kitts-Nevis Students’ Association (SKNSA) has made a cash donation of the equivalent of US$600 to the CTO Hurricane Relief Fund, following a fundraiser, which included a “We Care” benefit concert. The association also received donations from the Leeward Islands Students Association of Trinidad & Tobago at UWI in St Augustine, Trinidad.

“We wanted to do something for the affected countries in the region, we wanted to give back to show we really care, and although we are small in numbers we can do a lot,” Dennis McCall Jr, the outgoing SKNSA president said.

The CTO collects donations through the CTO Relief Fund for relief efforts in any of our member countries affected by hurricanes, and to assist other Caribbean countries affected by natural disasters. The CTO Relief Fund has “501(c)(3)” status in the United States, which means it has been approved by the United States Internal Revenue Service as a tax-exempt, charitable organisation.

“We’d like to offer our gratitude to the St. Kitts Nevis Students Association for their generous donation to the CTO Relief Fund. It is heartwarming to see the care and attention that people throughout the caribbean are paying to this really important cause and, most especially, to see we have engaged the attention and the generosity and compassion of the young people,” Hugh Riley, the CTO’s secretary general said.

“They are the future of the Caribbean and they are as concerned about the well-being of the Caribbean as the rest of us are and they are doing something about it, and we are eternally grateful.”

To make a donation to the CTO Relief Fund please visit https://bit.ly/2H0idHq.

Posted in: 2018 News, Blog, Caribbean Recovery

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Grenada Wins 14th GOLD MEDAL at RHS Chelsea Flower Show

St. George’s, Grenada – May 22nd, 2018 – The Pure Grenada exhibit at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2018 named ‘Grenada-The Road to Success’ has won a highly coveted gold medal. This brings to 14 the number of gold medals awarded to Grenada in 20 years of exhibiting at the Show, with four being awarded in as many consecutive years to Grenada-based lead designer, Catherine John and her extended team of volunteers.

This year, the team brought Pure Grenada, the Spice of the Caribbean to life with a fragrant and exuberant representation of one of the island’s iconic historic symbols-the board bus. Measuring 10ft by 4ft, the sides are open to the spice-fragranced breeze and sweeping views as the bus heads back to the countryside from the capital city of St George’s.

The Grenada team’s intricate design emphasises the rich and abundant flora typical of the tri-island state of Grenada, Carriacou and Petite Martinique, accented with scented spices and complemented by verdant foliage. Heliconias, orchids, gingers, tropical ferns, fruits and spices all feature prominently.

Mrs. John said: “’Grenada-The Road to Success’ unites Grenadians in the memory of travelling by open-sided bus to and from our capital St George’s. These buses, always resplendent in our national colours of red, gold and green, were an institution in themselves and provided vital transport links to work, school and markets. Goods were carried on the rooftop, represented by our hanging orchids and bananas, whilst the exhibit showcases our islands’ extraordinary fertility and biodiversity with evocative blooms, foliage and spices that thrive at different levels of vegetation.”

She added: “Our rainforest, dry forest, orchids and spices are all represented, revealing their intense colours and fragrances to ensure Grenada really stands out from the floral displays at the Show.”

The blooms, greenery and spices were grown in Grenada and arranged to design ahead of Monday, 21st May when the display enthralled VIP Press Day visitors including Dr Johnson Beharry VC – recipient of the highest military decoration for valour in the British and Commonwealth armed forces, who was born in Grenada. Well-known names including ITV Royal Wedding presenter, Philip Schofield; athlete Perri Shakes-Drayton; singer Beverley Knight; and actors Alison Steadman OBE and Christian Vit (Game of Thrones) were also impressed.

Mrs. John said: “We’re delighted that the exhibit has been awarded a Gold Medal here in London. A journey on an open-sided bus was a delight, and my personal inspiration for the design comes from memories of driving past cocoa and spice trees, palms, exotic blooms and brightly-coloured blooming shrubs. Many more Grenadians will fondly recall idyllic journeys on such buses between the 1930s and 1990s.”

Patricia Maher, CEO of the Grenada Tourism Authority, said: “We’re proud to sponsor ‘Grenada-The Road to Success’ and the entire team who have once again provided visitors to the world’s premiere flower show with an authentic taste of our islands. The RHS Chelsea Flower Show is an unrivalled world stage and continues to play a prominent role in enticing visitors to Pure Grenada, where they are free to wonder at our abundant natural beauty and exquisite gardens.”

All connected with the pavilion express their gratitude to the 2018 supporters and those who offered their time and plant materials.

RHS Chelsea Flower Show remains open to the public until Saturday 26th May 2018. For more information on Pure Grenada, visit www.PureGrenada.com or search for #FreeToWonder on social platforms.

Posted in: 2018 News, Blog, Destination News

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St. Maarten Tourist Bureau, in collaboration with St. Martin Tourist Office (French) host journalists from the Netherlands and Belgium

Philipsburg, May 15th 2018 – The St. Maarten Tourist Bureau is currently hosting a group press trip consisting of journalists from the Netherlands and Belgium representing the publications: ‘De Telegraaf’, ‘Reishonger’, ‘We Are Travellers’ as well as ‘KNACK’.

These journalists are on St. Maarten to see the progress made, as well as to receive updates from various stakeholders including Princess Juliana International Airport and Port St. Maarten. In addition, the journalists will partake in various activities on the Dutch and French side to get a sense of what there is to do on the island. The journalists will visit the art gallery of Max Phelipa ‘Art in the Garden’ and Tess Verheij ‘Art Craft Café’. They will also experience the zipline at Rainforest Adventures, take a tour at Topper’s Rhum Distillery as well as take a sunset sail by Aquamania amongst other activities.

Photo L to R: Gianira Arrindell (St. Maarten Tourist Bureau), Alexander Bakker (de Telegraaf), Audrey St. Luce-Jack (Princess Juliana International Airport), Acting Minister TEATT Cornelius de Weever, Tanja Olde Weghuis (Aviareps), May-ling Chun Interim Head of Tourism, Ichel Moeslikan (Port St. Maarten), Kamiel Vermeylen (KNACK), Lotte Wildiers (Reishonger), Agnes Nijholt (We are travelers), William Bell (St. Maarten Tourist Bureau)

At the welcome dinner organized for the journalists, Acting Minister of TEATT Cornelius de Weever was present, alongside Interim Head of Tourism May-Ling Chun and members from Port St. Maarten, Princess Juliana International Airport and St. Maarten Tourist Bureau. Students of the National Institute of Arts gave a heartwarming performance at the welcome dinner that show cased the local dance and attire.

“Our Tourism product has drastically changed and we have the opportunity to rebuild St. Maarten phase by phase better and stronger and public relations is a high priority in this entire process” says May-Ling Chun.

It is imperative that the consumer markets in the Netherlands and Belgium know that there is progress being made on the island after the devastation of Hurricane Irma, and most importantly that there are ample tourism activities and hotels that are open and ready to welcome tourists again.
Therefore, the St. Maarten Tourist Bureau will continuously work on public relations to ensure that the trade and consumer markets are aware that St. Maarten is open for business and that they receive updates about the progress of the island as it happens.

Posted in: 2018 News, Blog, Destination News

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