THE CARIBBEAN TOURISM ORGANIZATION'S 26th annual
Caribbean Tourism Conference, hosted for the first time in the U.S.
Virgin Islands at Marriott's Frenchman's Reef in St. Thomas, gets
underway next week. Pre- and post-conference agent tours will visit
St. Croix and St. John; agents also will have hotel and cruise ship
site inspections and island tours of St. Thomas. The Travel
Institute (formerly ICTA) upped the ante from three to 10
continuing education units for certified travel counselors and
associates who participate in destination presentations and niche
market seminars at CTC-26. CTO will launch three online initiatives
at the conference, including an online booking engine for agents, a
business-to-business (B2B) marketplace and an interactive travel
planner. Agents will have access to general sessions and
motivational workshops wrapped around the overall theme of recovery
and growth in a competitive environment. Barbados and Air Jamaica
will host an agent breakfast; workshops will focus on weddings and
honeymoons, eco and adventure tourism, cooperative selling
strategies and event planning. For details, visit www.onecaribbean.org.
• Resorts slated to open next month in the Bahamas include the
183-room Four Seasons Resort Great Exuma at Emerald Bay and the
20-room/22-villa Emerald Palms on South Andros. Two of the five
towers at Wyndham Nassau Resort & Crystal Palace Casino have
completed renovations; Old Bahama Bay on Grand Bahama Island is
adding 12 junior suites and four two-bedroom Grand Bay suites;
Pelican Bay at Lucaya will complete the addition of 48 one-bedroom
units by January; and the $1 million renovation at Viva Fortuna
Beach on Grand Bahama will be finished by January.
• The 66-room Spice Island Beach Resort in Grenada will complete a
$400,000 room renovation project by Dec. 15, complete with new
bedding and bathroom upgrades.
• The four-room Deep Blue View B&B in Bonaire offers six
one-tank boat dives for $150 per person, including tank, weights
and tax. The resort has its own boat that can accommodate up to
eight people. For rates, visit www.deepblueview.com.
• SuperClubs' Breezes Montego Bay waived the greens fees for its
golfing guests who play at the nearby Ironshore Golf Course.
Golfers also receive roundtrip transfers to the course, 15 minutes
away, provided that two or more golfers travel together.
• Windjammer Landing Villa Beach Resort on St. Lucia pays 15%
commission on its special package rates which represent a 15%
savings to guests. The plans have a minimum six-night stay and
include two meals a day and roundtrip transfers. Rates start at
$105 per person, per night, double through Dec. 20 and from $125
from Jan. 4 through April 18. For details, visit www.windjammer-landing.com.
THE VENUE FOR CARIBBEAN MARKETPLACE 2004, the
annual conference of the Caribbean Hotel Association, is set for
San Juan's Roberto Clemente Coliseum Jan 11 to 14. Caribbean
Marketplace, co-sponsored by the Puerto Rico Tourism Co., the
municipality of San Juan and the Puerto Rico Hotel & Tourism
Association, originally was to have been held at the new Puerto
Rico Coliseum in Hato Rey, a San Juan suburb. However, the Hato Rey
facility will not be ready on time.
• The Bahama Out Islands Promotion Board appointed Kerry Fountain
executive director. He previously served as general manager, the
Americas, for the Bahamas Tourist Office, which is part of the
Ministry of Tourism.
• Kerzner International named J.T. Kuhlman chief executive of its
recently launched One & Only Resorts brand. Kuhlman was
formerly president of Inter-Continental/Crowne Plaza, a subsidiary
of Bass Hotels & Resorts. Longtime Kerzner executive Paul Jones
was named COO of One & Only.
• Raffles Int'l appointed Brad Beaty director of sales and
marketing for Raffles Resort at Canouan Island, the Grenadines.
Beaty's track record includes Orient-Express Hotels' La Samanna in
St. Martin, Four Seasons Resort in Nevis and corporate sales
management positions at The Mark and the Helmsley properties in New
York. The Canouan resort, Raffles' first in the Caribbean, is
scheduled to open next summer.
• The Cayman Islands Dept. of Tourism named Donald Foste senior
manager, U.S. sales and marketing, based in New York. Previous
experience includes stints with Club Med and Continental
• Couples Resorts appointed Melissa Trench sales and marketing
communications manager in the Miami headquarters. Trench will serve
as liaison between Couples Resorts and tour operators, agents and