Hotel association executives choose new leader
Lisa Hamilton will serve a two year term succeeding Frank Comito, executive vice president of the Bahamas Hotel Association.
PARADISE ISLAND, Bahamas, Saturday, January 28, 2012 – Lisa Hamilton, president of the United States Virgin Islands Hotel and Tourism Association, has been elected the new head of the Caribbean Society of Hotel Association Executives (CSHAE).
Hamilton will serve a two year term succeeding Frank Comito, executive vice president of the Bahamas Hotel Association, who has held the position since 2009.
“I am honored and humbled to have been selected by my peers as president. It is my goal to continue to drive all of the key initiatives laid out by Frank and the previous board as they have done such a fantastic job for our organization," Hamilton said.
At the annual general meeting, members presented a US$2,000 check to the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association Education Foundation’s (CHTAEF) Haiti Relief Fund which provides training programs to help rebuild the nation’s tourism talent base, much of which was lost as a result of the devastating earthquake two years ago.
This follows an earlier contribution of $3,000 made by CSHAE to the Fund. The CHTAEF has been on the ground in Port-au-Prince since 2010, delivering education and skills training to surviving hotel school students through extensive volunteer time and expertise.
NEW TOURISM MINISTER THROWS FULL SUPPORT BEHIND JAMAICA JAZZ AND BLUES
Jamaica’s new minister of tourism and entertainment Dr. Wykeham McNeil has earmarked the Jamaica Jazz and Blues Festival – The Art of Music as a key fixture on the annual travel and tourism calendar.
“A lot of time (when) you go and talk to travel agents and tour operators, they ask you ‘what happens in Jamaica?’ One of the things that comes to mind is the Jazz Festival,” Dr. McNeil told reporters at the 2012 Caribbean Marketplace travel convention at the Atlantis resort on Paradise Island this week.
Describing the festival, which opened yesterday, as a magnet drawing Jamaicans overseas and their friends, the minister opined “Jamaica could benefit from more events such as this,” especially during the trough periods.
New York-based radio host Irwine Clare said Jamaican-Americans had been keenly counting down to the festival which is being held at Trelawny Stadium and features international superstar Celine Dion.
“Jamaicans in the Diaspora look forward to the jazz festival as a yearly vigil, not only for its musical content but to renew friendships and partake in Jamaica's world class hospitality,” Clare said.
Himself Jamaican, Clare, the managing director of Caribbean Immigrant Services, also recognized the festival for its significant boost and “economic stimulus” to the local economy.
EAST WINDS INN IS TOP CARIBBEAN ALL-INCLUSIVE RESORT
A little known gem on the island of Saint Lucia has beaten out the much more well-known properties for the prize as the best all-inclusive resort in the Caribbean.
The East Winds Inn resort topped the category in the 2012 TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice awards and was also named the number three all-inclusive resort in the world.
General manager Gareth Leach, in his 21st year at the resort, said more than 50 percent of his first time visitors become repeat guests – “a true testament to the quality of our offering.”
For more information on East Winds Inn, visit www.eastwinds.com.
BERTHIA PARLE APPOINTED TO SAINT LUCIA SENATE
Saint Lucia’s first lady of tourism, Berthia Parle, General Manager of the Bay Gardens Beach Resort & Spa, recently appointed by the Governor General to serve as an independent Senator, has been elected by her peers to serve as Deputy President of the Senate.
Senator Parle has been an esteemed member of the tourism industry for more than 30 years, and among her many achievements, was her election as the first female president of the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA.)
“(Berthia has) displayed top-notch leadership qualities in all of her roles in the tourism industry over the years, and the Bay Gardens community has no doubt she’ll surpass expectations as Senator,” said Sanovnik Destang, Assistant Managing Director of Bay Gardens Resorts.
QUALITY INN EL PORTAL FEATURES NEW RESTAURANT
Ever tasted a "Cookie Pizza"? Well, you can sate your interest and your appetite in the lobby of Quality Inn El Portal in San Juan, Puerto Rico.
The innovative restaurant, "La Competencia XLP," fuses traditional Latin favorites with exciting modern renditions.
Food afficionados Xiomara Marquez, Luis Cueto and Francisco Cueto, the famous founders of the highly acclaimed Pelayo restaurant in Puerto Rico, have applied their combined culinary skills at "La Competencia XLP" in the Quality Inn El Portal, a Choice Hotels International property.
The trend-setting trio tempt diners with an array of salads, calzons, pastas, homemade salsas, pizzas and desserts prepared by culinary veterans.
Signature dishes are the pizza "La Competencia"; and "Orzo Risotto with cantimpalo sausage."
And for dessert? "Cookie Pizza" of course.
Since opening in late November 2011, the feedback from guests has been enthusiastic, especially those attending NBA Nights and Soccer Sundays.