Charlestown, Nevis, May 27, 2019 (NIA): The Nisbet Plantation Beach Club is the Ministry of Tourism’s 2019 Hotel of the Year. The award was presented at the annual Nevis Tourism Industry Awards ceremony on May 25, 2019, an event designed to recognise and reward the achievement of industry workers, partners and stalwarts.
This year, the event was held on the grounds of Government House at Bath Plain under the patronage of Mr. Collin Stapleton, an avid masquerade who is employed at the Nevis Cultural Development Foundation. The awards ceremony marked the end of a month of activities for Exposition Nevis to promote greater tourism awareness on Nevis. This year’s theme was “Celebrating Nevis’ Tourism through Festivals.”
In addition, seven other awards were presented to Ms. Asheena Farrell of the Four Seasons Resort, Nevis for Hotel Manager of the Year 2019; Ms. Shariesa Sutton from Hamilton Beach Villas and Spa was awarded Tourism Employee of the Year; and The Lime Beach Bar & Tours Ltd. was awarded for Best Nevisian Culinary Experience 2019.
Long Service Awards were presented to Ms. Jacinth Morton of the Golden Rock Inn; Mr. Willbirth “Dan” Perkins of the Nisbet Plantation Beach Club; and Ms. Omel Wilkin of Omel’s Ground Handling Service.
The Tourism Entrepreneurship Award went to Ms. Eldaria Jones of Mobile Bare Necessities; and the Taxi Operator of the Year went to Ms. Thelma Claxton of TC Island Tours.
Nevis Cultural Tourism Lifetime Achievement Award went to Joseph “Juggo” Brandy; Recognition Award for contribution to the Development of Festivals in Nevis went to Mr. Crefton “Meeko” Warner; Recognition Award went to Mr. Nelson Stapleton for 13 years of service as Supervisor of Beach Patrol; and the Tourism Star Award (Ministry of Tourism Staff) went to Mr. Derrick “Fork” Liburd, head groundsman at Nevis Heritage Village.
Other awards were presented by Mr. Collin Stapleton, Tourism Awards patron.
Certificates of Appreciation were also presented by the patron to the Barnes Ghaut Community Management Team for the Barnes Ghaut Breadfruit Festival; Culturama Secretariat for Nevis Culturama; Department of Agriculture for Agriculture Open Day; Department of Community Development for its role in the development of community-based tourism; Gingerama Committee for Gingerama Festival; Indian Castle Fisherfolk Association for the Indian Castle Fisherfolk Association Fishing Tournament; Jessups Community Management Team for Jessups Seafood Fiesta; Oualie Beach Resort for Nevis Blues Festival; Nevis Cultural Development Foundation for perpetuating Nevis’ Intangible Cultural Heritage; Department of Education for the Nevis Inter-Primary Athletics Championship (Mini Olympics); Nevis Tourism Authority for the Nevis Mango and Food Festival; St. John’s Community Improvement Club for the SJCIC Good Friday Kite Flying Competition; St. Thomas’ Parish Festival Committee for STT Fest; and Mr. Pearlievan Wilkin for the revival of culture in St. James’ Parish, through WinFes.
Meantime, Mr. John Hanley, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Tourism stated that festivals are a critical component in the island’s tourism product as they showcase the culture, heritage and authentic pulse of a destination.
“Across the Caribbean region and right here in Nevis, festivals focus on particular themes such as food, rum, music, art, sport, sailing, religious events, literary accomplishments and dance. We have dubbed this evening’s event as ‘LiFT,’ which stands for Linking Festivals and Tourism,” he said.
Mr. Hanley noted that the variety of festivals on Nevis is evidence of a rich cultural diversity and authenticity, gives Nevis its character, and it is this cultural diversity which today’s tourists value highly and urged the public to embrace the local festivals.
“We must promote and support these events. Festivals also have important economic value, especially in a destination such as ours which has marked seasonality.
“Let us embrace our own festivals. Let us seize the economic opportunities that they afford us. Let us be proud of the vibrant heritage and culture that are celebrated therein and maximize the opportunity to showcase and promote our destination,” he said.