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Something to smile about in a downturn

Winning a World Travel Award is the highest accolade an organisation in the travel and tourism industry can receive. So not surprisingly some of the biggest smiles at last week’s Caribbean Marketplace 2009 belonged to the proud winners of the prestigious awards, referred to as “the Oscars of the travel industry” by the Wall Street Journal. The winners won the legendary trophies last month at the World Travel Awards Grand Final in Turks & Caicos.

Pictured above is Leandro Cruz from Casa de Campo, voted “World’s Leading Golf Resort” at the World Travel Awards Grand Final 2008 in Turk & Caicos. The luxury resort also picked up “Dominican Republic’s Leading Hotel” and Dominican Republic’s Leading Resort”.Pictured left is Ana Fonseca from Amanyara Resort, winner of “Turks & Caicos Leading Boutique Hotel”. The Aman Resorts brand has created an unrivalled ability to sculpt romantic hideaways that blend seamlessly into their local environment. Its flagship property in Turks & Caicos, which scooped the award, is elegance personified, with a secluded beachside setting that echoes the nuances of the tropics and the overwhelming beauty of these paradise islands.

Karen Whitt from The Somerset on Grace Bay is pictured here. The Presidential Suite at The Somerset scooped “Turks & Caicos Leading Suite”. This resort has excelled by exuding a playful gentility, with original touches such as a croquet court and lessons in sandcastle building. However it is most famous for its expansive suites, and its incredible setting next to the crystal white sands of legendary Grace Bay Beach, voted “World’s Leading Beach” at the World Travel Awards.

Above are John Byles, Paola Byles and Marc Melville from Chukka Caribbean Adventures, winner of “Caribbean’s Leading Adventure Excursion Operator”.