The International Council of Tourism Partners (ICTP) announced the St. Eustatius Tourism Development Foundation in Dutch Caribbean has joined as a destination member. Maya Leon-Pandt of the foundation explained: “The St. Eustatius Tourism Development Foundation is the agency responsible for promoting and developing tourism on St. Eustatius. Our mission is to get the island government to lend greater priority to tourism by providing adequate funding to effectively and efficiently promote tourism in key markets; ensuring a quality tourism product by introducing and controlling the minimum standard requirements; and preparing future generations to take on greater responsibilities within this sector by means of teaching tourism as a subject on levels of the education system.”
ICTP Chairman Juergen T. Steinmetz said: “We are very pleased to welcome the St. Eustatius Tourism Development Foundation to our growing list of destination members. The vision of the foundation is to develop St. Eustatius into a special interest tourism destination, and aims to do so by promoting high quality tourism standards. This is right in line with ICTP’s mission to promote quality tourism growth.”
St. Eustatius has always recognized that its nature and marine life are precious assets. The St. Eustatius National Parks Foundation (Stenapa) is responsible for managing many ecotourism initiatives. The seas around Statia are considered among the most pristine in the world, with dive sites ranging from coral reefs, drop-offs, and canyons, to historical and recent wrecks. The formation of a Marine Park preserves the underwater nature and safeguards the artifacts that make Statia a “Historical Gem of the Caribbean.” Stenapa also manages the National Parks, maintains the trail systems throughout the parks, and manages the Miriam C. Schmidt Botanical Garden.