Archive for February, 2020

Antigua and Barbuda Celebrates “Wendy” Movie Premiere

St. John’s, Antigua (February 27, 2020) – Antigua and Barbuda is celebrating the theatrical release of Wendy, the latest film by Beasts of the Southern Wild award-winning Director Benh Zeitlin that was partially filmed in the twin-island destination. Wendy is an American fantasy drama film, intended to be a re-imagining of J.M Barrie’s “Peter Pan,” that takes place in an exciting and breathtaking new setting. Premiered at Sundance, in this new version, “Wendy and her brothers come from a working family. Raised amongst dinner plates and diner patrons, the children have an itch for the adventurous and slightly mischievous. After long nights watching trains rattle by their bedroom window, the kids are whisked away by a mysterious boy named Peter. A long journey taken on faith lands them on Peter’s island. There they discover a wild new world, one without grown-ups and suspended in time. Reveling in their youthfulness and sprawling freedom satisfies the kids at first, but nostalgia for their lives left behind seeps in. When threats to their eternal childhood develop, Wendy is tasked with saving herself, her brothers, and the other island children with the most powerful tool she has: love for her family.”

Scenes for Wendy were filmed at scenic islet and natural attraction Hell’s Gate and various locations in Antigua and Barbuda, and the titular character of Peter Pan is played by Yashua Mack, a young Antiguan with no prior acting experience. Discovered by Benh Zeitlin, Yashua’s performance is being hailed by critics and plays a key part of the transcendent experience of the film.

To celebrate the worldwide release Antigua and Barbuda is inviting viewers to discover the allure of Peter Pan’s island shown in Wendy, and see firsthand why this Caribbean destination was chosen as the magical playground setting. “Antigua and Barbuda and all of her natural wonders and topography is on full display in the wondrous world of Wendy. We are excited to have Antigua and Barbuda brought to life across movie screens around the world on such a large scale. We are incredibly proud of Yashua Mack and his performance as Peter Pan and invite viewers to come see Peter Pan’s home firsthand,” shared The Honorable Charles Fernandez, Antigua and Barbuda’s Minister of Tourism and Investment, on the theatrical premiere.

Wendy is scheduled to be released on February 28, 2020, by Searchlight Pictures in New York, Los Angeles, Washington, DC, with expanding release throughout March. A red-carpet event premiering the movie in Antigua will take place in March at the Hodges Bay Resort and Spa, hosted by Director Benh Zeitlin, Antigua Producer Bert Kirchner and the Antigua and Barbuda Ministry of Tourism. To find out more about Antigua and Barbuda and why it was chosen as the fantastical home of Peter Pan and the lost boys go to today.

Posted in: 2020 News, Blog, Destination News

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Sustainable Tourism Roundup – February 18, 2020

Sustainable Tourism Roundup – February 18, 2020

Welcome to the Caribbean Tourism Organization’s 1st Sustainable Tourism Roundup for 2020. Below we present information and events relevant to sustainable tourism product development that you will find informative. You are encouraged to take action where appropriate and to disseminate this information widely, for the benefit of all tourism stakeholders.

View Roundup February 2020

Posted in: 2020 News, Blog, Sustainable Tourism Roundup

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Skills Revolution To Feature Prominently At Next Tourism Human Resources Conference

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (25 Feb. 2020) – The skills revolution needed to keep Caribbean tourism competitive will be a key subject of discussion when human resources professionals from across the region gather for the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO)’s 10th Tourism Human Resources Conference.

The conference, which will be held from 20-22 May, 2020 in Nevis under the theme: “Navigating the Next Phase of Caribbean Tourism”, is being organised in collaboration with the Nevis Tourism Authority.

“As the future of work emerges within the global tourism industry, the challenge for employers to recruit, retain and upskill workers to add value to their organisations becomes an ever-more essential component of operating successful tourism businesses,” said Sharon Banfield, the CTO’s director of resource mobilisation and development. “But there is a substantial disruption moving between present day and desired future. That disruption is the tourism industry entering the world of skills and competencies. In many sectors around the world, it is being referred to as the skills revolution.”

Canadian Joe Baker, dean of the School of Hospitality, Tourism and Culinary Arts at Centennial College in Toronto, and member of the board of directors of Tourism HR Canada, will present on the subject.

Joe Baker

Baker, an expert at leading multi-generational workforces, will conduct an interactive presentation on how Canada is addressing an acute tourism industry labour shortage by creating a national framework of skills and competencies for employers and educators to access and leverage to foster prosperity.

“The new era of skills and competencies is upon us as employers are driven to find and build a resilient and agile workforce that may not come through the doors with relevant education and experience,” Banfield said. “The opportunity is there for employers to identify, recruit and harness the skills required for new workers to thrive and contribute to the sustainability and growth of tourism in an increasingly competitive market.”

Baker, who holds a master’s degree in education from the University of Toronto, specialising in higher education leadership, is a regular contributor to hospitality and tourism industry trade publications and media outlets. He has developed a unique advocacy space for the collaboration between education and industry to build a resilient and agile tourism workforce. In January of 2020 he delivered a dynamic presentation at Impact Sustainable Travel and Tourism Conference in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada outlining challenges and strategies required for education to contribute to the future of the tourism industry itself.

His presentation at the conference will be one of many to help employers and HR professionals understand how to evolve their mindset from one of education and experience to one of skills and competencies. It will challenge conventional thinking and provide employers insight into key practices within the workplace that will contribute to organisational and industry success.

For more information on the 10th Tourism Human Resources Conference, including how to register, please visit

Posted in: 2020 News, Blog, HR Conference

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Statement on the Passing of Sir Royston Hopkin

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (24 Feb. 2020) – The Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) is saddened at the passing of Sir Royston Hopkin, a true giant in Caribbean tourism.

Sir Royston was a faithful and passionate servant of Grenadian and Caribbean tourism for nearly six decades and his dedication was fully demonstrated through his many outstanding achievements. His was a virtual lifetime of high performance, devotion to country and the Caribbean, and commitment to excellence in the hospitality sector, as evidenced by the fact that his Spice Island Resort in Grenada maintained the coveted AAA Five Diamond year after year.

Always willing to share a kind word of advice or encouragement, Sir Royston was a mentor to many, unfailingly considerate of his staff and kind to his guests. He was a firm believer in the richness of the Caribbean’s natural resources and culture, and he worked tirelessly for the sustainability of the region’s tourism. Throughout his career he was always willing to offer his time, talent and resources to help others achieve their dreams, from memorable holidays to the provision of employment to hundreds of Grenadians and the overall betterment of the region.

Sir Royston’s passing leaves a massive void in the Caribbean hospitality sector, and his generosity, hospitality, courtesy, helpfulness and friendliness will be sorely missed.

The CTO council of ministers and commissioners of tourism, board of directors, staff and the entire CTO family extend deepest condolences to his wife, Lady Hopkin, his family, Spice Island Resort staff and the Grenadian and Caribbean tourism sector on whose lives his contributions had and will continue to have, a positive and lasting impact.

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Grenada Hits the International Runway with Fe Noel at New York Fashion Week

St. George’s, Grenada W.I. – February 19, 2020 – Billed as one of the seven designers to watch at this year’s New York Fashion Week by Elle magazine, designer Fe Noel brought her new collection to life at New York’s Spring Studios Gallery last Wednesday. Grenadian Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Keisha McGuire, celebrity publicist, Yvette Noel- Shure, Chief Executive Officer of the Grenada Tourism Authority, Patricia Maher, US Director of Sales, Christine Noel-Horsford, Sales Executive, Zachary Samuel, and General Manager at Silversands Grenada, Narelle McDougall, were seated front and on hand to provide support to this daughter of the soil.

Ambassador McGuire emphasized,“the importance of supporting Grenadians on the rise in the international arena as they help shine a light on the country to promote the tri-island nation of Grenada, Carriacou and Petite Martinique and fuel the nation’s continued success.  Such exquisite talent as Fe, whose work exudes patriotism and pays homage to the Isle of Spice, is indeed inspiring to us all.”

“We are extremely proud of Fe, not just about her tremendous journey to being recognized as one of the industry’s influential designers but for her stellar representation of Grenada’s culture, lifestyle and creativity through her designs,” noted Maher. “It is our hope that young designers in Grenada will be inspired by Fe and even more motivated to excel on an international level.”

To a packed house of fans, well-wishers and industry influencers, the collection began with a two-and-a-half-minute video presentation featuring striking images of Grenada’s cultural character, Jab Jab, people who walk and dance through the streets wearing a horned headpiece covered in black oil and a prologue by her Grenadian grandmother outlining the journey of the “Daughter of the Soil.” From sleek and draped nutmeg prints, an ode to Grenada being considered one of the world’s top producers of the spice, to elegantly flowing silhouettes in various patterns and shades of red, yellow and green–the colors of Grenada’s national flag, the eclectic collection received a standing ovation from those in attendance.

Fe Noel (born Felisha Noel) is a Brooklyn-based womenswear designer with a passion for travel, a love of vibrant colors, and a penchant for bold prints. She entered the industry at 19, opening a brick and mortar boutique for vintage lovers and trendsetters in Brooklyn. Since then her designs have been worn by the likes of Michelle Obama and Beyoncé and this collection was sponsored by Estée Lauder. Fe is heavily influenced by her Grenadian heritage and large, close-knit family. In addition to designing, she enjoys helping other young women start their own businesses, which she is able to accomplish through the Fe Noel Foundation, a program for young girls who are passionate about entrepreneurship. For more on the Daughter of the Soil collection, visit

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