The Caribbean Hotel Association (CHA) is raising the bar for Caribbean hospitality with a ‘member-centric’ annual conference that meets the challenge of being more relevant to its members.Ê The Caribbean Hotel Industry Conference 2005, better known as CHIC, will take place June 26-29, 2005, at the Hyatt Regency Miami, in Florida - the first time the event is held outside the Caribbean.“That Caribbean tourism can expect continued growth, albeit moderate, in arrivals this year is both cause for optimism - and a call to pay urgent attention to the improvement of our product in all areas,” said CHA President Berthia M. Parle, MBE.
“In response, we’ve turned CHIC up-side-down and inside-out to give Caribbean hoteliers what they need, the tools to identify opportunities for growth.Ê Hoteliers can expect to learn how to make more money and how to save money - as well as have access to information that they would otherwise not get.”
CHIC 2005 will offer the features of a world-class event, such as a session entitled “The Strongest Link-International Industry Benchmarking,” where recognized hoteliers from destinations in the Caribbean and abroad will discuss the latest developments in hotels globally, as a way to bring the regional industry up to date with innovative and best practices world-wide.
Meanwhile, for “Extreme Makeover-Design on a Dime” CHA will team up interior design firms and supplier companies with Caribbean hotels, in advance, and given the challenge of refurbishing the properties “on a dime;” the results will be presented at CHIC with a step-by-step presentation of the transformation.
Further, the traditional professional development sessions will be addressed in “Fresh & Hot Market Research,” a series of live focus groups that dare hoteliers to test their marketing decisions and hedge their bets, with discussions on issues, contradictions, trends, and market diversification.
Buying power is another very specific need of Caribbean hotels, small and independent properties in particular, and an important consideration for holding CHIC 2005 in Miami, Florida.
“Miami is the industry’s buying capital and it enjoys great access from Caribbean destinations, which makes it convenient and affordable for Caribbean hoteliers and suppliers to attend,” said Barbadian hotelier Peter Odle, 1st vice president of CHA and chairman of the CHIC Planning Committee, as well as the CHA Membership Committee.Ê Attending hoteliers will automatically be eligible to earn US$1,000 towards purchases from any of the exhibitors in trade show, through a lottery that will be held every hour during the business hours of the trade show.
The Trade Show will also feature a Demo High Tech Hotel Room and a Demo Green Hotel Model, focusing on revenue and cost-saving opportunities, as well as guest convenience.
Spice to the Mix:
Ten teams of Caribbean chefs, pastry chefs and bartenders will once again put the spotlight on Caribbean cuisine and tourism at the regional culinary competition Taste of the Caribbean® 2005, before an expected audience of 1,000 members of the Caribbean hospitality industry at CHIC 2005.
Each national team will compete in a ‘live kitchen’ environment, preparing and serving a 3-course meal for 25 persons in four hours.ÊCompetition meals will be open to the Miami public, adding a consumer component to the CHIC conference.
To date, Barbados, Puerto Rico, Trinidad & Tobago, and Sint Maarten have confirmed the participation of their national culinary teams in the competition.
Traditional popular events featured on the conference agenda are the CHA Foundation Golf Tournament and the Silent and Live Auctions. The American Express Awards Luncheon, another conference highlight, will name the 2005 Employee and Supervisor of the Year, Hotel Association Executives of the Year, and winners of the Tourism Media Awards. In the CHIC tradition, the conference will culminate with the CHIC 2005 Cham