The redevelopment of Saint Lucia’s international airport is underway as the destination continues to see a positive growth trend in tourism arrivals in 2019.
The latest figures released by the Saint Lucia Tourism Authority show that visitor arrivals for January are up 5.5 per cent.
The UK saw a surge of 11.2 per cent on arrival figures resulting in 7,329 stay overs.
The US market also rose by 7.6 per cent and Caribbean visitors is strong with a 4.9 per cent hike.
UK bed nights have also risen marginally by 1.4 per cent to an average of ten nights.
British visitors stay for the highest number of nights across all markets.
The continued success is credited to a wide range of accommodation to suit different budgets.
Currently, Saint Lucia has a room stock of just over 5,000 rooms spread across large and small hotels, villas, guesthouses and apartments.
Saint Lucia continues to win awards as the best honeymoon island in the Caribbean.
This along with strong airlift access and cruise stopovers means that the destination is optimising its appeal to visitors.
The release of the latest figures follows the official sod-turning ceremony held at the grounds of the proposed airport site in Vieux Fort.
The Saint Lucia Air & Sea Ports Authority formally introduced the project masterplan estimated at US$175 million dollars, which will significantly improve airside and airfield operations.
“This is a welcome development and great news for the island’s tourism industry” said prime minister Allen Chastanet.
“The redevelopment project seeks to provide a state-of-the-art airport facility, which will become the standard of the region.”
This upgrade will significantly contribute to stay-over arrivals thanks to the financial assistance of the government of Taiwan.
It is anticipated that the HIA Redevelopment project will be completed within 30 months.