CHA Announces Official Speaker Line-up for CHIC

The Caribbean Hotel Association is proud to present the line-up of incredible speakers to appear at the annual Caribbean Hotel Industry Conference (CHIC) in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic. The theme, the “Unconventional Convention”, applies to the laid-back and relaxed atmosphere that CHIC is promoting for the conference this year.
The stimulating line-up consists of speakers representing all facets of the travel and tourism industries. In addition, attendees will enjoy their share of activities from foundation golf events benefiting the scholarship fund, to dinners with live and silent auctions to trade expositions. The program consists of four general sessions and four workshops that will prove to be not only helpful, but thought provoking and fun!

The event will open with words from keynote speaker Tom Murray, Chief Operating Officer for the American InterContinental Hotels Group PLC, followed by an evening of cocktails to be enjoyed in the purposely informal atmosphere. During General Session 1, moderator James Burba will delve into the dramatic changes in tourism that have taken place in the past year. CTO
Chairman Honorable Obie Wilchcombe, CHA President Simón Suarez, and Peter Odle, managing director of Mango Bay Resorts will describe their perspectives on understanding the new mindset and attitude of the general consumer. Focusing more on public perception of the Caribbean, the second general session will reveal “What`s In and What`s Out” as panelists Bill Meade from PA Consulting, AAA`s Representative, Corey Dalling and Laura Begley of Travel + Leisure offer their techniques for analyzing trends in global hospitality. 
The speaker line-up for the third general session will prove to be educational as Paul Brown from McKinsey & Co, Allen Chastanet from Air Jamaica, Bob Troni representing American Airlines, Emanuel Schreibmaier of Sol Melia Hotels & Resorts, and Pamela Richards, chair of the CTO Aviation Committee, from USVI Department of Tourism unveil tourism`s success among the airline industry and what will be needed to stay competitive in today`s travel environment. The moderator for “(I`ll Take 1,000) Tourists to Go” will be McKinsey & Company`s own Paul Brown. In the final general session, the audience will go “From Business Suits to Bathing Suits” while Rich Cortese from Wyndham Hotels & Resorts uncovers what exactly individual hoteliers must do to capitalize on meetings and incentive travel. Panelists Paul Flacket from IMEX: The Worldwide Exhibition for Incentive Travel Meetings and Events, based in Germany, Richard Doumeng of Bolongo Beach, St. Thomas, USVI; Alberto Gurrola with Fiesta Americana Grand Coral Beach in Cancœn; and Myrtle Dwyer representing Half Moon Golf Beach Club in Jamaica will unearth the best tools to tap into one of the fastest growing market segments in the industry.
Workshops at CHIC 2003 are designed with entertainment as well as leisure in mind. Guests to the conference will learn in the first workshop, “On-Line Dating and Then Some”, how to identify those vital tools used to capture affective marketing and sales tactics. Panelists include Laura Viglia of Expedia, Joe Humphrey, Travelweb, Thom Dunaway representing and Anthony Campanale of Marketur Inc.  In Workshop Two`s “By Land or By Sea,” the subject for discussion will be the cruise industry and its part in tourism within the Caribbean as the basis for the CHA Cruise Policy. To aid in this endeavor will be speakers Fernando Garcia from the Riviera Maya Hotel Association, Ross Klein, the `Cruise Junkee,` Frank Rose of Alaska Lodging Management, Giora Israel with Florida Caribbean Cruise Association, Lania Rittenhouse from the Cayman Islands Dept. of Tourism, and Min. Randolph Horton, Minister of Parks, Sports and Recreation - Bermuda.

Allen Chastanet of CHACT, Jean Holder from the Caribbean Tourism Organization, Vincent Vanderpool - Wallace from the Ministry of Tourism Bahamas, Berthia Parle with Bay Gardens Hotel, and Riviera Maya Trust Representative will join moderator Horace Hord, Aruba Hotel & Tourism Association, and President of the Caribbean Society of Hotel Association Executuives (CSHAE) in the discussion of the “Public/Private Sector in Bed Together.” Of course, nothing could be better than the subject of the fourth workshop, “Merengue and More.” This clinic will examine the best practices of resource development using success stories of the Latin Caribbean. Join panelists, Johnny Bernal, President of the Naco Group and President of the Dominican Republic`s National Hotel & Restaurant Association (ASONAHORES), Alvar Ojeda of Viva Maya, Cancœn, and former CHA President John Jefferis, as they tap out tactics on securing foreign and local investment opportunities as well as gaining public sector support. The moderator for this workshop will be Ellis Perez, former Minister of Tourism of the Dominican Republic

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