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CTO Expands Black Tie Awards Gala to Honour Influencers

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (xx May, 2018) – The Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) has announced the finalists for the Caribbean Travel Media Awards, which will be held at the Wyndham New Yorker on 7 June during Caribbean Week NewYork (#CWNY2019). It is the second incarnation of the expanded media awards programme which the CTO has staged for the past two decades to honour travel journalists and other professionals whose exceptional work has raised the profile of the Caribbean brand and helped the region achieve its tourism goals.

New in 2019, the CTO has added the ‘I Have Influence’ award to the contest in recognition of the growing number of influencers who contribute to telling the Caribbean’s story.

A distinguished panel of media and industry judges led by veteran travel journalist Mark Orwoll (pictured right) were enthusiastic about the quality of work represented, indicating that the prestigeous competition attracts a higher calibre of submissions each year.

“The Caribbean has long inspired artists, designers, and vacationers of all sorts with its vibrant culture and laid-back atmosphere. The media entries our committee reviewed make it abundantly clear that the region is also a powerful muse for the journalists, photographers and influencers who motivate travel decisions and contribute to the Caribbean’s status as the world’s leading warm weather destination,” said Orwoll.

A contest in which readers can select the winner for the Oh My Word, I Blogged! Best Caribbean Travel Blog Posting will continue to allow voting through 18 May, 2019.

For the remaining categories, the following finalists have been selected:

I Couldn’t Have Written It Better Myself: Best Feature Article in a U.S.-based Consumer Newspaper

  •   Kristin Emery: “Paradise Found: Unspoiled and Undeveloped in St. Kitts.” – Observer-Reporter (Southwestern PA)
  •   Lawrence Millman: “Mayaguana, a World Away and Worth the Trip.” – Boston Globe
  •   Christopher Muther: “How Martinique’s Rum Became Certifiably the Best in the Caribbean” – Boston Globe

Been There, Wrote That: Best Feature Article in a U.S.-based Consumer Magazine

  •   Emma Glassman Hughes: “Artists in Barbados Reveal the Beauty of Negative Space” – Here Magazine
  •   Larry Olmstead: “Catch It If You Can” – Celebrated Living
  •   Tony Perrotett: “The Martinique Mystique: Why Americans Are Suddenly Flocking to This Gorgeous Caribbean Island?” – Travel + Leisure

Inner Circle King/Queen: Best Feature Article in a U.S.-based Trade Publication

  •   Gay Nagle Myers: “Romantic Escape at Sandals Royal Barbados” – Travel Weekly
  •   David Swanson: “Visiting a Sandals Resort as an LGBT Couple” – TravelAge West
  •   Ed Wetschler: “Jamaica: News for Travel Agents” – Recommend

Oh Snap! Best Photograph in Conjunction with a Feature Article

  •   Raymesh Cintron: photo accompanying “We Want to Show the Islands as They Have Never Been Sceen Before” – Cacique
  •   Brian Finke: photo accompanying Marta Cerdà’s “Razing Cane: To Taste Haiti’s Small Batch Rum is to Cut to the Heart of What Makes the Island Worth Exploring” – AFAR
  •   Jeff Mayers: photo accompanying Marshelle Haseley’s “Trinidad Carnival…More Than Meets The Eye” – Panache

Golden Mic: Best Feature Broadcast

  •   Jason Kidd: “Live from Sandals Grenada with Ria Murray” – WRQX Mix 107.3
  •   Donna Perkins: Episide on Negril, Jamaica – Andiamo Uptown
  •   Ryan Seacrest: Segment on The Bahamas – Live with Kelly and Ryan

Virtual Visitor Award: Best Feature in an Online Publication (not including blogs)

  •   Sarah Greaves-Gabbadon: “This All-Inclusive Resort in Jamaica Offers Unlimited Spa Treatments” – Islands.com
  •   David Molyneaux: “Barbados Offers Beaches, Cricket Matches, Local Rums and a Glimpse of Jewish History” – MiamiHerald.com
  •   Tik Root: “How One Country Is Restoring Its Damaged Ocean” – NationalGeographic.com

I Have Influence: Best Executed Influencer Campaign That Delivered Results Based On Agreed Objectives

  •   Silvia Lawrence: Guyana
  •   Francesca Murray: Jamaica Food and Drink
  •   Enocha Tellus: Pure Grenada

Up the Social Ladder: Best Social Media Marketing Campaign by a CTO Member Country

  •   Bahamas: #NoFilter infuencer campaign by Bahamas Ministry of Tourism
  •   Jamaica: #JoinMeInJamaica digital marketing campaign by Jamaica Tourist Board
  •   Martinique: #MakeItMartinique campaign in conjunction with Uncommon Caribbean

Look, I’ve Gone Social: Most Outstanding Social Media Coverage of an Event or Activity (by a journalist or influencer)

  •   Chelsea Davis: Barbados Crop Over Festival
  •   Lebawit Girma: Barbados Food & Rum Festival
  •   Francesca Murray: Grenada Chocolate Festival

Me Too! I Rediscovered Home! Best Feature by a Diasporan Journalist in U.S. or Caribbean Media

  •   Kevin Williams: “Rum Making with Appleton Estate’s Master Blender” – Caribbean Life

No Anansi Story! Best Feature by a Caribbean-based Journalist (that appeared in Caribbean-based media)

  •   Catherine Morris: “Soufriere Models Community Tourism” – St. Lucia Star
  •   Ricqcolia Phillip: “UberSoca Cruise: The CARICOM of the Soca Experience” – Loop
  •   Leisha Wong: “Island Inspired” – Cayman Airways Skies

CTO assembled a panel of expert media and travel industry judges to review submissions and determine the award-winners, led by head judge Mark Orwoll:

  • Mark Orwoll is a veteran travel journalist who was on the staff of Travel + Leisure for 29 years, including stints as managing editor and international editor. As a staff writer, he wrote scores of articles for the print edition, as well as a daily online travel advice column for travelandleisure.com. As an editor, he has worked with such travel writing luminaries as Bill Bryson, Paul Theroux, and Jan Morris. Mark is also well known for his hundreds of broadcast appearances as a travel expert on NBC’s Today, CBS’s Early Show, ABC’s Good Morning, America, and numerous other local, national, and international TV programs. Mark has taught feature writing at Media Bistro, and for many years was an adjunct professor in the NYU master’s in publishing programme. He is a member of the Society of American Travel Writers and the New York Travel Writers Association. As an independent journalist, he has written for Condé Nast Traveler, United Airlines’ Hemispheres, Frommer’s Travel, The Travel Channel, Robb Report, Town & Country, and numerous other print and online publications. In his free time, Mark plays lead guitar in a rock band and tends the fish in his backyard koi pond.
  • Tiffany Dowd, Founder and president, Luxe Social Media, advises luxury travel brands on social media marketing and online strategy and was recognised among the “25 Best Luxury Digital Experts To Follow.”
  • Tony Fraser is a veteran journalist with over 40 years of experience, a graduate in journalism, history, sociology, politics and economics, and international affairs, and part-time lecturer in journalism at the University of the West Indies, St Augustine campus.
  • Pauline Frommer is the Co-president of Frommer Media LLC with her father Arthur Frommer. She is the publisher of both the Frommer Guidebooks and Frommers.com, and the co-host of the Frommer Travel Show on both WABC and Radio America.
  • Terry Gallagher is president of  Lou Hammond Group, New York, a destination marketing leader with over 30 years’ experience planning and implementing strategic campaigns in the travel industry that have resulted in award-winning placements.
  • Fran Golden is is an award-winning travel writer. She is a frequent contributor to Bloomberg Pursuits, Virtuoso Life and Condé  Nast Traveler, among other publications, and co-author of several cruise travel books including Frommer’s EasyGuide to Alaskan Cruises and Ports of Call and Frommer’s EasyGuide to River Cruising.
  • Mark Edward Harris is the award-winning photographer behind books such as “The Way of the Japanese Bath” and “Inside North Korea” as well as a travel/documentary photojournalist whose work appeared in Vanity Fair, Condé Nast Traveler, National Geographic Traveler, Islands, Marie Claire and The New York Times.
  • Josh Kahn is a well-respected tourism industry consultant and public relations specialist at award-winning boutique agency KTCpr as well as immediate past chairman for the prestigious New York Chapter of the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA).
  • Norie Quintos is an award-winning journalist and editor at large for National Geographic Travel Media. She also helps destinations and travel companies find and tell their stories as a consultant on communications strategy, media relations, custom content and messaging.
  • James Shillinglaw, founder and editor-in-chief of Insider Travel Report, has been covering the travel industry for nearly 30 years for a number of trade publications. His new online newsletter delivers an insider perspective on the travel industry. He’s also a highly sought after industry speaker and panel moderator.

Winners will be announced at the Caribbean Tourism Industry Awards Gala during Caribbean Week NewYork, an elegant awards ceremony and dinner on Thursday, 6 June, 2019.

Tickets are available for $300 per person or $2,750 for a table seating 10 persons.

About Caribbean Week New York:

Caribbean Week New York is the largest regional tourism activity in the New York area. Artistes, performers, celebrity chefs, the Diaspora, investors and other strategic partners join government officials and the media for a week of festivities designed to raise awareness of the Caribbean’s diverse tourism industry and provide opportunities for member destinations 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 travel agents and the media who influence key travel demographics.

Caribbean Week is supported by: Academy Engraving, American Express, Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Bedessee Sports, The British Virgin Islands, Bloomingdale’s, Blue Waters, Calabash Cove Resort & Spa, Cayman Islands, Cititech Solutions, Coyaba Beach Resort, Cool Tech Air Conditioning and Refrigeration LLC, Delta Airlines, Dominica, Doctor’s Cave, Four Season Resort Nevis, Grenada, Jamaica, James Beard Foundation, JetBlue, Lightspeed Reservation system, Martinique, Ocean Terrace Inn, Round Hill Hotel and Villas, Sandals, St. Vincent and The Grenadines, Saint Lucia, The Wyndham New Yorker Hotel, Travel+Leisure, Williams-Sonoma.

To participate in, or sponsor any Caribbean Week New York event, visit www.caribbeanweek.com; email [email protected] or call +1212-636-9350.

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].

Posted in: 2019 News, Blog, Caribbean Week, Media Awards

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Top Influencers to be Recognised at Caribbean Week New York

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (3 March. 2019) – For the first time since its introduction in 2003, influencers will be able to compete for an award in the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) travel media awards programme this year.

In keeping with social media trends and the organisation’s objective of recognising all media, the CTO has added the ‘I Have Influence’ award to the contest in recognition of the growing number of influencers who contribute to telling the Caribbean’s story.

The ‘I Have Influence’ award will be given to the influencer judged to have executed the best campaign that has delivered results based on agreed objectives. Entrants will be required to submit a summary of the brief, the objectives and goals of the campaign or activity, any key performance indicators agreed to measure the success of the campaign,  how the campaign was planned and what collaboration took place, any research undertaken, tools and technologies used and challenges that were overcome, the methodology used use executing the campaign, and how it satisfied the performance indicators.

It was only last year that the CTO introduced two social media categories to the contest -the ‘Up the Social Ladder’ category for the best social media marketing campaign by a CTO member country and ‘Look, I’ve Gone Social’ for the most outstanding social media coverage of an event or activity by a journalist. Both categories will be part of this year’s awards programme.

There are twelve categories altogether for this year’s awards, which will be presented at the Travel Industry Awards Dinner on Thursday 6 June during Caribbean Week New York. The deadline for the receipt of entries is Friday 5 April 2019.

For further details, including the categories, the rules governing the contest and guidelines for submission, as well as to submit entries, visit www.onecaribbean.org or click on the following link: https://bit.ly/2XCqIlw.

Organised by CTO-USA, Inc, Caribbean Week New York will take place from 1-8 June with a programme throughout New York City that includes key business meetings held at the Wyndham New Yorker Hotel. The week is designed to raise awareness of the Caribbean’s diverse tourism industry and further enhance the Caribbean region’s cultural tapestry. Combining exciting consumer-oriented and informative business sessions with Caribbean-inspired cuisine, lively entertainment, authentic cultural experiences and networking opportunities, Caribbean Week New York is the largest Caribbean tourism activity in the city.

Posted in: 2019 News, Blog, Caribbean Week, Media Awards

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CTO Announces the Winners of the 2018 Caribbean Travel Media Awards

London, UK 7 November, 2018: The Caribbean Tourism Organization has announced the winners of the 2018 Caribbean Travel Media Awards. On Monday, 5 November over 60 members of the UK media joined visiting Caribbean Ministers, UK Chapter Members and Caribbean partners at an exclusive networking evening, held at the Fox @Excel, to celebrate the winners and runners up of the ten category awards.

The big winner on the night was Ursula Barzey of Caribbean & Co., who scooped the ‘Best of the Best’ award out of over 130 entries for her consistency in producing outstanding content about the Caribbean. Other award wins for Ursula were in the Best Social Media category for an all-encompassing #NextStopGrenada Campaign; and Best Caribbean Round up for an insightful 10 facts-about-the-Caribbean-region enthusing travellers to refine their travel search.

In the very competitive Best Consumer Feature category, Will Bruton won on all counts for his dazzling account of an authentic sailing holiday in ‘Fall in Love with Antigua’ in *Yachting Monthly.

The award for Best Travel Trade went to Tamara Hinson for an excellent Tobago Nature Tour review in Travel Weekly while the award for Best Online Feature went to Rupert Parker for his quirky and fun story of Mangoes, Food and History in Nevis for metro.co.uk.

Sally Peck picked up the Best National Newspaper award for an enticing ‘Nevis, Me and a Honeymoon for One’, feature in the Telegraph, with Best Regional Newspaper going to Hannah Stephenson for her account of volunteering in Jamaica, published across 40 regional newspapers, including yorkshireeveningpost.co.uk.

Amongst the other accolades were Blogger duo, Yaya and Lloyd of Hand Luggage Only, who won the Best Blog Post award for their captivating stories and images of St. Kitts across their social media platforms entitled Your Essential Guide of Things to do in St Kitts.

The Best Broadcast award was won by *BBC Two’s excellent production of ‘An Island Parish Anguilla – After the Hurricane’ which offered a heart-warming overview of life on the island a year after the hurricane and as the re-building begins. Finally, Best Photojournalism was won by Julianna Barnaby for a ‘Nevis Travel Guide’ Things to do in Nevis featuring brilliant imagery and content in her blog, The Discoveries Of.

Opening the Awards Ceremony Carol Hay said, “The standard of entries this year was extremely high and I was pleased to note such highly engaging and informative articles, digital and non-digital, as well as great video and photography. On behalf of the Caribbean Tourism Organization, I would like to congratulate all the finalists, especially our winners and our 2018 overall winner, Ursula Barzey. Each entry plays its part in raising awareness of the Caribbean as a region, and this year has been no exception. I would also like to thank the Judges for their excellent reviews and scoring and the sponsors who very generously provided the prizes.”

The 2018 Caribbean Travel Media Awards winners, runners-up (2nd and 3rd place respectively) and sponsors were:

Best Travel Trade Feature:
1st place: TAMARA HINSON ‘Tobago Natural Tour’, Travel Weekly
2nd : Laura French (Travel Weekly)
3rd: Andrew Doherty (TTG)
Sponsor: Bahamas Tourist Office-London

Best National Newspaper Feature:
1st place: SALLY PECK, ‘Nevis, me and a honeymoon for one’
2nd : Tamara Hinson (Express Weekend)
3rd: Keith Miller (Telegraph)
Sponsor: Saint Lucia Tourism Authority

Best Regional Newspaper Feature:
1st place: HANNAH STEPHENSON, ‘Here’s to Voluntourism’, PA
2nd: Oxford Mail/Oxford Times
3rd: Nicola Brady, Evening Standard
Sponsor: InterCaribbean

Best Consumer Feature:
1st place: WILL BRUTON, ‘Fall in love with Antigua’, Yachting Monthly
2nd : Vitali Vitaliev, Geographical
3rd: Fred Mawer, Sunday Telegraph and Katie Bowman, Sunday Times Travel Magazine
Sponsor: Discover Dominica Authority

Best Broadcast TV and Radio Feature:
1st place: DONNA CLARKE & CHRIS MITCHELL, An Island Parish Anguilla – After the Hurricane
2nd: Alison Hammond, ITV
3rd: Cathy Bartrop, Travelguru TV
Sponsor: St. Kitts Tourism Authority

Best Online Feature:
1st: RUPERT PARKER, ‘Stunning beaches and bags of culture in Nevis’, Metro.co.uk
2nd: Oliver Smith, Telegraph Online
3rd: Amy Hopkins, Family Traveller
Sponsor: Kuoni

Best Blog Feature:
1st place: LLOYD AND YAYA, ‘The Essential Guide to visiting St. Kitts’, Hand Luggage Only
2nd: Macca Sherifi, Adventurous World
3rd: Terry Lee, LiveShareTravel
Sponsor: Antigua & Barbuda Tourism Authority

Best Piece of Photojournalism:
1st place: JULIANNA BARNABY, ‘Nevis Travel Guide’,  The Discoveries of
2nd: Andrew & Emily, Along Dusty Roads
3rd: Nick Robertson-Brown, Scubaverse
Sponsor: Tobago Tourism Agency

Best Social Media Campaign:
1st place: URSULA BARZEY, ‘#NextStopGrenada, Caribbean & Co.
2nd: Caroline & Nick Robertson-Brown, Scubaverse
3rd: Heather Cowper, Heather on her travels
Sponsor:  St. Vincent and the Grenadines Tourist Office

Best Caribbean Round Up:
1st place: URSULA BARZEY, ‘10 Facts About The Caribbean Region’, Caribbean & Co.
2nd: Heather Cowper, Heather on her travels
and Nigel Tisdall, Telegraph
Sponsor: Caribbean Tourism Organization

About the Caribbean Media Awards
The Caribbean Travel Media Awards celebrate and reward the very best representation of the Caribbean by the media industry in the areas of writing, photography, digital media, broadcast media, publishing and trade. Within each category, points are awarded for the Best representation of the Caribbean as an attractive region to travel to; Best representation of the island featured within the Category; Best promotion of the key USP’s of the island featured within the Category and, finally, Originality of the campaign, article, video or blog.   The 2018 Caribbean Travel Media Awards were reviewed and judged by a panel of 11 Judges, made up of high-profile individuals representing the travel industry and media.

Posted in: 2018 News, Blog, Corporate News, Media Awards

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New Categories Added For Caribbean Travel Media Awards

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, 5 March, 2018 –   Two new categories have been added to this year’s Caribbean Travel Media Awards to be presented by the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) during Caribbean Week New York.

Both awards are for social media and are among changes for this year’s Caribbean Tourism Industry Awards programme.

This year the CTO introduces the Up the Social Ladder award for best social media campaign by a member country and the Look, I’m Going Social award for most outstanding social media coverage of an event or activity in, or about, a CTO member country by a journalist or influencer.

In addition, for the first time ever the awards will be presented at a dinner, after being a luncheon event from its inception.

“Social media has become an important tool in the coverage of tourism, and both our members and the media are increasingly using the various platforms to tell compelling Caribbean stories. Therefore, we believe now is the time to introduce these awards to make the categories of awards more reflective of the ways the public consumes information,” said Sylma Brown, the head of the CTO New York office, which organises Caribbean Week New York.

“The decision to make it an evening event came after feedback from our members, who felt this was one way of giving the awards programme the stature it deserves,” Ms. Brown added.

During the Caribbean Travel Industry Awards Dinner, the CTO will also present its Lifetime Achievement Award, the allied members’ Jerry, Allied and Special Recognition Awards will be presented, and Jamaica will hand out its Marcia Vickery and Marcella Martinez awards. Tickets are US$250 per person or US$2250 for a table of ten.

The following are the categories for this year’s Travel Media Awards to be presented to journalists from US and Caribbean-based media:

I Couldn’t Have Written It Better Myself

  • Best Feature Article in a US-based Consumer Newspaper

Been There, Wrote That

  • Best Feature Article in a US-based Consumer Magazine

Inner Circle King/Queen

  • Best Feature Article in a US-based Trade Publication

Oh Snap!

  • Best Photograph in Conjunction with a Feature Article

Golden Mic

  • Best Feature Broadcast

 Virtual Visitor Award

  • Best Feature in an Online publication not including blogs

Up the Social Ladder

  • Best Social Media Marketing Campaign by a CTO Member Country

Look, I’ve Gone Social

  • Most Outstanding Social Media coverage  of an event or Activity by a journalist or influencer

Me Too! I Rediscovered Home! 

  • Best Feature by a Diasporan Journalist in US or Caribbean Media

No Anansi Story!

  • Best Feature by a Caribbean-based  Journalist that appeared in Caribbean-based media

Oh My Word, I Blogged!

  • Best Caribbean Travel Blog Posting

The deadline for receiving entries is Friday 6 April at 11:59 Pacific Standard Time.

The blog award is given to the person voted as having written the best travel blog posting about the Caribbean or any CTO member country. The winner is decided by public vote.

Bloggers are asked to enter via the following link: https://ctobesttravelblog2018.pgtb.me/z5k1wp. Voting begins on Monday 9 April at 12:01 a.m. Eastern Standard Time and ends on Friday 18 May at 11:59 p.m. PST.

All other entries must be submitted in the following formats via https://caribmediaawards.pgtb.me/dDmC8s.

Caribbean Week New York, which takes the sights, sounds, tastes, colours and attributes of the Caribbean to the vibrant American city, takes place from 2-8 June, 2018.

Posted in: 2018 News, Blog, Caribbean Week, Media Awards

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Canadian travel industry partners recognised by the Caribbean Tourism Organization

TORONTO, Canada, 22 November, 2016 – Two Canadian travel industry partners have been recognized by the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) for their contributions to the region’s development through tourism.

The CTO presented its Special Recognition Award to WestJet and Flight Centre Ltd at the Caribbean Tourism Industry Awards Luncheon in Toronto on 22 November held as part of Caribbean Media Day organised to underscore the importance of the Canadian market to the Caribbean.

WestJet’s award was “in appreciation of your unquestionable commitment to the development of the Caribbean through tourism by providing a decade of outstanding, uninterrupted service to the region” while Flight Centre Ltd was “in recognition of your significant impact on the development of the Caribbean through tourism and your outstanding contribution to the region”.

2016 marks a decade of WestJet service to the Caribbean, with the Bahamas being its first international destination.

Flight Centre Ltd is a leading retailer of travel products and services for the leisure and corporate markets. Its wholesale brand GOGO Worldwide Vacations supplies a variety of services, including packages, accommodation, tours and cruises, and is its largest global supplier of land product.

From left: Gavin Miller, Flight Centre’s VP of retail operations; Hugh Riley, CTO’s secretary general and Andrew Jones of Flight Centre’s product department. Below (from left) Lyell Farquharson, WestJet’s VP of sales and distribution; Hugh Riley and Dave Cecco, director of Westjet product

From left: Gavin Miller, Flight Centre’s VP of retail operations; Hugh Riley, CTO’s secretary general and Andrew Jones of Flight Centre’s product department. Below (from left) Lyell Farquharson, WestJet’s VP of sales and distribution; Hugh Riley and Dave Cecco, director of Westjet product

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Posted in: 2016 News, Blog, Caribbean Week, Media Awards

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