Basseterre, St. Kitts — St. Kitts’ Ministry of Tourism and International Transport recently won the Destination Stewardship Award at a ceremony during the Caribbean Tourism Organisation’s State of the Industry Conference in St. Thomas.
Mrs. Patricia Martin, Permanent Secretary and Mrs. Diannille Taylor-Williams, Assistant Secretary, accepted the award on behalf of the Ministry. The Destination Stewardship Award goes to a destination which successfully demonstrates a program of sustainable tourism, while incorporating social, cultural, environmental and economic benefits.
“It is a great honor to accept such a prestigious award,” Mrs Martin said. “Indeed we are working very hard to achieve sustained growth in visitor arrivals to obtain optimal long-term benefits for the population, without adversely affecting the country’s cultural heritage and natural resources.”
Caribbean Tourism Organization’ top sustainable tourism award, the Caribbean Excellence in Sustainable Tourism (CEST) Award, was presented to The Puerto Rico Tourism Company.
The awards were presented in collaboration with the online community for the travel and tourism industry, TravelMole. They comprised six categories covering all aspects of sustainability, from overall excellence, to accommodation, community, heritage and biodiversity. They were judged by a panel of three tourism and environmental specialists: Lloyd Gardener, the president of the Foundation for Development Planning Inc. in the USVI; Jake Kheel, the environmental director at Puntacana Resort & Club in the Dominican Republic and Gail Henry, CTO’s sustainable tourism product specialist.
The full roster of recipients below signifies the diverse range of sustainable initiatives working in the Caribbean’s favour to enhance its desirability as a holiday destination:
Destination Stewardship Award:
- Special Mention: Rewa Village (Guyana)
- Winner: Ministry of Tourism and International Transport (St. Kitts & Nevis)
Sustainable Accommodation Award:
- Special Mention: Rosalie Bay Resort (Dominica) and Xanadu Island Resort (Belize)
- Winner: Hamanasi Adventure and Dive Resort (Belize)
Community Benefit Award:
- Special Mention: Tryall Club and Villas (Jamaica)
- Winner: Belmont Plantation Company/Belmont Estate (Grenada)
- Special Mention: Turks and Caicos National Trust (TCI)
- Winner: Jost Van Dykes Preservation Society (BVI)
Biodiversity Conservation Award:
- Special Mention: Atlantis Submarines (Barbados)
- Winner: Guana Island Hotel (BVI)
Caribbean Excellence in Sustainable Tourism Award:
- Special Mention: Compass Point Dive Resort (Cayman Islands)
- Winner: Puerto Rico Tourism Company
The CTO/Travel Mole awards are aimed at identifying, recognizing and showcasing sustainable tourism best practices in the Caribbean, which embrace sustainable tourism concepts and core values, and which helps to enhance the tourism product offerings.