CTO News

Students Colloquium to Feature Rising Stars in Caribbean Tourism During Caribbean Week New York

NEW YORK, NY (15 May 2018) – The Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) will host its eighth annual Caribbean Students Colloquium on Wednesday, 6 June 2018, from 5:30 – 8 p.m. at the Wyndham New Yorker (481 Eighth Ave., New York). Co-sponsored by Cititech Solutions and Academy Engraving, the Colloquium – an event where students are challenged to present well-researched, practical and financially viable sustainable tourism projects – is dubbed “Students Taking Center Stage: A Forum for Rising Stars in Caribbean Tourism.” This event is open to the public and free to registered attendees (click here to register).

The Colloquium will take place during Caribbean Week New York 2018 (#CaribbeanWeekNewYork2018, #CWNY18) when it brings together students enrolled in tourism and hospitality programs that have a devotion to the Caribbean and are eager to make a contribution to its sustainable development.

The Colloquium is designed with three main goals:

  • To serve as a catalyst for creativity through competitiveness and scholastic research
  • To enhance in-class learning among students by heightening sensitivity to sustainable initiatives in the Caribbean
  • To provide a platform for understanding the Caribbean tourism product and contributing to its development as a world-class destination

Teams are provided with the following three optional topics for their presentations: developing a strategic plan to confront one of four specific challenges facing the industry; designing a detailed tourism attraction proposal; or presenting an empirical and feasible initiative that governments can implement to boost tourism economic benefits within their local community.

Submitted presentations were reviewed and four schools were selected to participate in this year’s contest to capture the coveted title of 2018 Student Colloquium Champions: Monroe College – New York; University of the Bahamas – Nassau, Bahamas; University College of the Cayman Islands – Grand Cayman; and University of Technology – Kingston, Jamaica.

The final free-style presentations will be judged during the Students Colloquium by a panel of sustainable tourism and finance practitioners – Hugh Hough, Partner and President, GreenTeam Global, NY; Petra Roach, Director-USA, Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc.; Reginald Canal, Founder & Partner, Les Cayes Partners; and Rob Holmes, Founder & Chief Strategist, GLP Films.

“Tourism education is a critical element of sustainability in the Caribbean and the CTO is committed to ensuring that the brightest and best lead the tourism industry into the future,” said Sylma Brown, Director, CTO-USA, adding: “The Colloquium allows students to shine and to share their best ideas and original case studies.”

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 reenergizing and rejuvenating power of Caribbean wellness. During the week-long event (June 3 – 8), 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, 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].

Posted in: 2018 News, Blog, Caribbean Week

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Caribbean Week NY 2018 Celebrates Rejuvenation of the Region with ‘Revival’ Programme June 3

NEW YORK, NY (11 May 2018) – The Caribbean resiliency will be centre stage as visitors from the region join the New York Diaspora for a lively spiritual celebration highlighted by inspirational words from religious leaders and uplifting performances during a Revival for the Caribbean programme.

The revival will kick-off Caribbean Week New York 2018 (#CaribbeanWeekNewYork2018, #CWNY18) on Sunday, 3 June. This free event is open to the public and will begin at 4 p.m. at the Meredith Global Corporation (225 Liberty Street, 5th floor auditorium). Attendees are asked to register via https://www.caribbeanweek.com/event/revival/.

Master of ceremonies, the riveting gospel singer, Pastor Wendy Mitchell Lewis of Regenerating Lives Ministries in Covington, GA, will join other religious leaders and musicians, including Caribbean nationals and youth representing various faiths. The programme will feature gospel performances and motivational messages by talented and accomplished Caribbean nationals, all out to show their support for Caribbean nations affected by last year’s hurricanes and to give thanks for the recovery efforts.

The Revival for the Caribbean will include:

  • Welcome address by Hugh Riley, Secretary General and CEO, Caribbean Tourism Organization
  • Motivational message by a dynamic youth, Deacon Leandra Lambert, Episcopal Diocese of Long Island
  • Message of hope from Rabbi Bob Kaplan
  • Message of peace from Mohammed Razvi, Makki Mosque
  • Message of thanksgiving from a Guyanese pundit
  • Inspirational reading by Merisalyn Roberts, Miracle Temple Ministries, Brooklyn
  • Invocation by Pastor Gilford Monrose, Director, Faith-Based & Clergy Initiatives, Office of the Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams

Participants will enjoy performances by:

  • Pastor Wendy Mitchell Lewis – Trinidad & Tobago
  • Minister Janice Charles – Grenada
  • Minister Cora Moore Williamson – Guyana
  • Minister Wayne Johnson – Trinidad & Tobago
  • Keeyana Lampkin – Saint Lucia
  • Braata Performing Arts Group – Jamaica

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 reenergizing and rejuvenating power of Caribbean wellness. During the week-long event (June 3 – 8), 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, 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, Trip Advisor, Unique Vacations/Sandals, West Indian American Day Carnival Association (WIADCA), William Sonoma. Media Sponsors: ASIA TV USA, Ltd., Meredith Travel Group, and UBC Network.

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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CTO Honours Top Travel Journalists and Influencers at Expanded Media Awards Ceremony During Caribbean Week New York

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (9 May, 2018) – The Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) has announced the finalists for the Caribbean Tourism Industry Awards, an expanded media awards programme which will, for the first time, feature categories for social media influencers and campaigns in recognition of the changing media landscape and increasing relevance of non-traditional media. The winners will be unveiled at an elegant dinner ceremony at the New Yorker Hotel on 7 June during #CaribbeanWeekNewYork2018.

A distinguished panel of media and industry judges were enthusiastic about the quality of work represented at this year’s event. In particular, the expanded programme attracted a significantly greater number of entries for the No Anansi Story! and Me Too! I Rediscovered Home! categories which honour Caribbean-based and Diaspora media, respectively. The number of submissions for the newly introduced social media categories also surpassed expectations. The judges panel indicated that the prestigeous competition attracts a higher calibre of submissions each year.

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, 2018.

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

  • Melanie Reffes: “Cost No Object: Caribbean Vacations for the One Percent” – USA Today
  • Jessie Serwer: “Grenada’s Grand Anse May Be the Most Authentic Caribbean Beach” – New York Daily News
  • Mark Rogers: “Graze the Grenada Spice Market” – USA Today

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

  • Charlotte Peterson: “Spring Regatta Spices Things Up” – Sailing Magazine
  • Ryan Grim: “What Mangoes Mean to the island of Nevis” – Extra Crispy
  • Rosalind Cummings-Yeates: “Home for a Hamilton: Don’t Throw Away Your Shot at Visiting Nevis” – USA Today Go Escape

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

  • Ed Wetschler: “8 Resorts Whose Kids Programs Teach Real Skills” – Recommend
  • Dan Peltier: “Cayman Islands Tests U.S. Meal-Kit Service to Boost its Food Tourism Marketing” – Skift
  • Mark A. Thompson: “Stopping to Smell the Flowers at Martinique’s French Coco” – Travel Weekly

Oh Snap! Best Photograph in Conjunction with a Feature Article

  • Patrick Dykstra: photo of sperm whale of Dominica accompanying “What’s New in the Caribbean” by Elaine Glusac – The New York Times
  • Alex Mustard: photo of schools of silversides accompanying “Keepin’ It Easy: 60 Years on, Grand Cayman Dives are as Spectacular as Ever” by Ted Alan Stedman – Scuba Diving Magazine
  • IKenna Douglas: photo for “Photography Takes Centre Stage” – Panache

Golden Mic: Best Feature Broadcast

  • Harold Jessurun: “No Small Feat: Displaced Children of Barbuda” – Isla y Vuelta
  • Nneka Faison: “Take a Trip to Curacao” – WCVB/WABC Boston
  • Darley Newman: “Travels with Darley in Martinique” – Travels with Darley

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

  • Alexander Britell: “Following Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in Bimini” – Caribbean Journal
  • Alexander Britell: “Grenada, the Caribbean Capital of Chocolate” – Caribbean Journal
  • Lebawit (Lily) Girma: “13 Fun Things to Do in Curacao Right Now” – CNN Travel

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

  • Saint Lucia – “Let her Inspire You”
  • Grenada – “Free to Wander”
  • Bahamas – “No Filter”

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

  • Sarah Greaves-Gabbadon and Brian Major: “Get to Know Grenada” – JetSetSarah
  • Krista Simmons: “Experiential Offerings in Grenada” – Tastemade Travel
  • Yashekia Powell: “Full Travellers Guide to Jamaica Food & Drink Festival” – The World Up Closer

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

  • Dora Isaac Weithers: “St. Kitts: The Little Caribbean Island with Large Tourist Appeal” – HubPages.com
  • Kristin Braswell: “Empathy Not Embargoes: The Hypocrisy of the U.S. Cutting Ties with Cuba” – Essence
  • Danielle Pointdujour: “4 Reasons to Fall in Love with this Classic Bahamas Resort All Over Again” – Essence.com

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

  • Marie-Claire Williams: “Pilgrimage to the Home of Reggae” – Barbados TODAY
  • Catherine Morris: “Families Flock Pirates Cove: Freeport Welcomes First Bahamian Theme Park” – Welcome Bahamas
  • Kinisha Correia: “More than Just Beads: Story and Myth” – Panache

CTO assembled a panel of expert media and travel industry judges to review submissions and determine the award-winners, led by head judge Yuriy Boykiv, CEO at Gravity Media, LLC:

  • Yuriy Boykiv, CEO at Gravity Media, LLC, was responsible for the entire spectrum of global markets in his previous role driving the growth and business of the for the WorldDirect platform as Director of International Business at DIRECTV
  • Tiffany Dowd, Founder and President, Luxe Social Media, advises luxury travel brands on social media marketing and online strategy and was recognized among the “25 Best Luxury Digital Experts To Follow”
  • Tony Fraser, 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
  • Terry Gallagher, President, Lou Hammond Group, New York, and destination marketing leader with over 30 years’ experience planned and implemented strategic campaigns in the travel industry that resulted in award-winning placements
  • Mark Edward Harris, award-winning travel/documentary photographer whose work has appeared in Condé Nast Traveler, Forbes Life, Islands, National Geographic Traveler, Playboy, Marie Claire, The New York Times and Vanity Fair
  • Andrea Hutchinson, a dynamic public relations expert and freelance events director with a degree in journalism and public relations, and experience in sponsor relations, marketing, logistics and creating strategic alliances on behalf of global brands
  • Josh Kahn, 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, award-winning journalist and Editor at Large for National Geographic Travel Media helping destinations and travel companies find and tell their stories as a consultant on communications strategy, media relations, custom content and messaging
  • Ruthanne Terrero, Vice President – Content/Editorial Director at Questex Travel Group, which includes Travel Agent Magazine, Luxury Travel Advisor, American Spa and Hotel Management, among other well-respected titles

Winners will be announced during #CaribbeanWeekNewYork2018 at an elegant awards ceremony and dinner gala on Thursday, 7 June, 2018. Tickets are available for $250 per person or $2,250 for a table seating 10 persons.

Learn more about the awards programme at https://www.onecaribbean.org/caribbean-media-awards-2018/ or visit www.CaribbeanWeek.com to browse events and activities planned throughout #CaribbeanWeekNewYork2018.

Posted in: 2018 News, Blog, Caribbean Week, Corporate News

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New Caribbeanevents.com Provides At-A-Glance Resource For Travel Agents

CASTRIES, SAINT LUCIA (May 9, 2018) – A new online portal for events and festivals scheduled throughout the Caribbean recently launched, providing travel agents with a much-needed resource to help plan and enhance their clients’ vacations.

Caribbeanevents.com currently features more than 200 events, with new events added daily, across the region. This intuitive, easy-to-use calendar provides information for travelers interested in culinary, cultural, musical, and other events, with the ability to search for events by date, island, and even event type.

“The Caribbean has a reputation for some of the world’s most authentic and inspiring festivals and events that on-island partners invest significant human and financial resources in each year,” said Nerdin St. Rose, founder of Caribbeanevents.com. “We developed Caribbeanevents.com to meet a specific need to provide a platform to promote these events while also providing travel planners with concise, up-to-the-minute information that can enhance their clients’ vacations to the region.”

St. Rose brings more than two decades of marketing and event management expertise to the development of Caribbeanevents.com. An authority on doing business in the Caribbean, she has worked and lived in several islands, including the Bahamas, British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands, Saint Lucia, and the Turks & Caicos Islands.

St. Rose also noted the benefit to event organizers and planners to submit information directly onto the site, at no cost in this initial phase.  Destinations can list events for free, with fuller details and live links available at a nominal cost.

Planned enhancements include opportunities for hotels and destinations to add richer, customized content as well as value-added advertising opportunities that include homepage features, video, and direct links for ticket sales.

Travel planners can visit Caribbeanevents.com to search the full calendar of events and follow along for updates on Facebook and Instagram.

About Caribbeanevents.com: Caribbeanevents.com is an online portal for events and festivals scheduled throughout the Caribbean. Travel planners and consumers can research by date, island or type of event to find what’s happening in destinations across the region.  Destinations and event organizers can upload information directly onto the site, with enhanced content packages available.

CONTACT:  Stephanie Strommer   |   [email protected] | 212-229-0119

Posted in: 2018 News, Blog, Destination News

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American Airlines Unveils Third Daily Flight To Barbados From Miami; Launches Dec. 19

Following a year of record-breaking growth, Barbados anticipates an even larger influx of U.S. visitors with the latest uptick in flight service to the country. This month, American Airlines, the largest airline carrier in the United States, unveiled its newest routes, which include a third daily flight from Miami International Airport (MIA) to Grantley Adams International Airport (BGI). Commencing December 19, 2018, the new route will hinge on Barbados ascension as the Caribbean destination du jour. In 2017, Barbados welcomed 188,970 U.S. visitors – a 30 year high and the country is showing no signs of slowing down.

“The U.S.A is a very important growth market for Barbados and the commitment we’ve seen from our airline partners to increase and enhance flight options is backing this trend,” said Barbados’ Minister of Tourism and International Transport, the Honourable Richard Sealy. “As we know, ease and accessibility are primary drivers for customers’ consideration of a destination, and with this increased service from the Miami gateway, we anticipate even more success with visitor arrivals from the USA market.”

High-level airline partnerships have been a cornerstone effort for Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc. (BTMI), and this latest announcement is testament to this strategy.

“We’re thrilled to continue growing our presence in Barbados this coming December with a new seasonal frequency, further strengthening our more than 40-year commitment to this key destination in the Caribbean,” said Alfredo Gonzalez, Managing Director- Caribbean. “With this new route we will now be operating up to four daily flights to Barbados during the winter season from our hubs in Miami and Charlotte.”

The new route will go on sale May 14.

Posted in: 2018 News, Blog, Destination News

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American Airlines Announces Miami/AIA Service

KINGSTOWN, ST.VINCENT AND THE GRENADINES, May 2, 2018- American Airlines today announced St. Vincent and the Grenadines as one of the destinations to which its customers “will have new options to escape the cold with more seasonal and year-round flights”. A release issued by the Airline, states that “American is the first U.S. carrier to serve St. Vincent and the Grenadines (SVD) with the introduction of year-round Saturday service from MIA.” The release further states that the year-round service will operate on an Airbus A319 every Saturday commencing December 22nd 2018. According to the airline tickets will go on sale on May 14th 2018.

CEO of the SVG Tourism Authority Mr. Glen Beache expressing his elation with the announcement from American Airlines says “to have direct service out of Miami is a game changer for the country. This service will make it so much easier for visitors including the diaspora to vacation in St. Vincent and the Grenadines”. He further stated that “Miami being one of the main hubs for connections in the USA will be an excellent gateway for visitors from Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas and even the United Kingdom to access the beauty that is St. Vincent and the Grenadines”. In 2017, the North American market accounted for 42% of stay over visitors to St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

The American Airline scheduled non-stop service from Miami gives visitors and Vincentians another option to travel directly to and from the destination. Currently, Caribbean Airlines operates a weekly non-stop scheduled service from JFK International, USA and Air Canada Rouge a weekly non-stop scheduled Autumn/Winter service from Pearson International, Canada. There is also a chartered Sunwing service currently being operated out of Pearson for the Spring/Summer period.

Posted in: 2018 News, Blog, Destination News

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