The working visit in Ireland by the tourism delegation from the Seychelles led by Alain St.Ange, the island’s Minister responsible for Tourism and Culture, has seen meetings held with all the official tourism bodies of Ireland inclusive of the private sector representative bodies and both the Minister responsible for Transport, Tourism and Sports, and the Minister of State for Tourism and Sports.
Minister St.Ange was accompanied on his working visit to Ireland by Elsia Grandcourt, the CEO of the Seychelles Tourism Board, and by Flavien Joubert, the Principal of the Seychelles Tourism Academy.
The first series of meetings were at Shannon where the Seychelles delegation met with Mr. Philip Smyth, the Director of Shannon College of Hospitality Management. This was followed by meetings in Dublin with Minister Leo Varadkar, the Irish Minister responsible for Transport, Tourism and Sports, and a follow-up meeting with Minister Michael Ring, the Minister of State responsible for Tourism and Sports.
Minister Alain St.Ange and his delegation then met with Shane Clarke, the Director of Corporate Services&Policy, and Peter Nash, the Head of Strategy Development&Insights at Tourism Ireland, the all-Ireland body established under the Belfast Peace Agreement and charged with marketing of the island of Ireland on behalf of the Republic of Ireland and the Northern Ireland Administration.
Then it was on to the Irish Tourist Industry Confederation, the body representing all the sectoral bodies in the tourism industry enabling tourism to speak with one voice. Here the Seychelles delegation met with Eamonn McKeon, the Chief Executive of the ITIC. This meeting was followed by one with Tim Fenn, the Chief Executive of the Irish Hotels Federation, the representative body of the Irish Hotel and Guest House Industry.
The last meeting for the Seychelles delegation was with Shaun Quinn, the Chief Executive, and Aidan Pender, the Director of Strategic Planning for Failte Ireland, the Republic of Ireland Development Authority. This is the responsible body in Ireland for the development of tourism infrastructure, products, and services, including HR and quality control.
“The different meetings were an ideal opportunity for us to exchange ideas and for us to be informed on the how Ireland manages its tourism industry. We have found the meetings to be very interesting, and we have embarked on different avenues of cooperation. The first such proposal will be for an expert in social media who is today managing this for Ireland to come to Seychelles on a short-term attachment to work with the Seychelles Tourism Board and help us re-strategize our setup for better results,” Minister St.Ange said.
Our Celebrate Seychelles Events Department is also considering greening out “Little Big Ben,” our Clock Tower, for St. Patrick Day and in so doing have it join the list of world icons that mark this Irish Day. This proposal is today with Tourism Ireland as is the idea of Guinness and Ireland to be present at the annual Carnaval International de Victoria.
Minister St.Ange and his delegation were invited to visit some of the tourism sights of Ireland including the world-famous Cliffs of Moher, the Bunratty Folk Park where the delegation were also invited to a Medieval Banquet Dinner and Dublin’s major tourist attraction, the Guinness Storehouse.