A total of 23 named storms have thrashed and boiled out of the Atlantic so far this year and thrown themselves at the Caribbean region. Hurricane Wilma has being labelled the most powerful storm ever recorded in the Atlantic Ocean basin, yet most destinations have remained unscathed. The Caribbean, which is the world’s most tourism-dependent region, remains upbeat about the upcoming season and is expecting record arrivals, especially in early winter when northern holidaymakers make their way south.
The mantra from people attending the World Travel Awards’ gala ceremony from the region is one of “business as usual.” It helps that the Caribbean picked up some major travel industry trophies at the Royal Opera House in London.
“World’s Leading Beach” was awarded to Providenciales, Turks & Caicos, the Cayman Islands picked up “World’s Leading Dive Destination” while “World’s Leading Honeymoon” was grabbed by Barbados, which also picked up “Caribbean’s Leading Destination.”
The Caribbean islands are a potpourri of cultures and a fascinating mix of tropical forests and desert terrain, breathtaking beaches and adventure activities. This is personified by Tobago Main Ridge Rain Forest, which was awarded “World’s Leading Ecotourism Destination.” The island also scored another award this year with “Caribbean’s Leading Spa Resort” going to Le Grand Courlan.
The Caribbean region’s “Leading Cruise Destination” was picked up by the island of Jamaica while the region’s “Leading Boutique Hotel” went to Point Grace, Turks and Caicos.
VIP’s from the Caribbean tourism trade turned out in force to pick up their awards including the Minister of Tourism for Jamaica.|
Commenting on Jamaica Tourist Board’s success in the “Caribbean’s Leading Tourist and Convention Bureau” category, Aloun N’dombet-Assamba, Minister of Industry and Tourism for Jamaica said: “This award means because the tourist board has been recognised for the work it has done in the last year. We have reorganised our organisation and we have put the kind of resources that we think is necessary into what the Government of Jamaica has been supporting - the Jamaica Tourist Board - because we recognise that tourism is a very important contributor to the Jamaica economy.”
One hotelier noted at the gala ceremony: “To pick up a World Travel Award is like getting the stamp of approval from thousands of global travel professional—being voted the ‘world’s best’ is a real endorsement from the travel trade.”
It was also announced that next year’s gala ceremony - the 13th Annual World Travel Awards will be hosted on the Caribbean island of Turks & Caicos—another reason to celebrate.
“The quality, beauty and tranquility of the islands are sure to compliment the already auspicious event. We are eager to welcomeWorld Travel Awards’ guests and have already begun laying out the red carpet for them,” says Misick.
“It is a great opportunity for the Turks & Caicos to showcase our ‘Beautiful by Nature’ surroundings to newcomers, and to deliver an experience, that is above their expectations, to those who have visited us before.”
“We look forward to having the World Travel Award winners join us, as we thrill them with a taste of our spectacular country,” he explained.