Antigua and Barbuda is celebrating Caribbean Heritage Month in the US and Caribbean week with a strong presence and performance at this annual conference. Caribbean Week is the largest, most engaging regional tourism activity in the greater New York and US market, and typically attracts thousands of participants that results in extensive media coverage of the various events at a local, national, and international audiences that reaches millions. Now in its 44th year, the week-long event, organized by the CTO (Caribbean Tourism Organization) showcases the sights, sounds, colors, culture and unique experiences of the Caribbean. It is a unique platform to interact with Caribbean government and tourism officials, the media, investors and stakeholders, particularly in combining business sessions and consumer-oriented events.
Caribbean Week focuses on organizing the strengths of the region be providing dynamic opportunities for networking, combining resources and education. Leaders from each of the regions are present to learn from each other and strengthen relationships while interacting with media. Minister of Tourism, Economic Development, Investment and Energy, shared, “I am incredibly proud of how much Antigua and Barbuda tourism industry has grown dynamically in the last few years. We have announced various new properties, including opening the first Waldorf Astoria in the region, introduced new airlift and various sustainable tourism practices to ensure the longevity of the industry in our wonderful nation. This annual conference is an important key to this success as it allows us to share best practices in tourism, marketing and the region and in building engagement in one of our most important markets, North American, helping secure our continued future success.”
Thursday’s events were geared towards interacting with the media in recognition of the positive and flourishing relationship the Caribbean tourism industry has with the media, beginning with the Caribbean Media Awards Luncheon followed by the Media Marketplace. In addition to the awards ceremonies, the CTO held the Media Marketplace, a three-hour open forum for media to attend so as to network with the different participating regions, and find out the latest news from them directly. Antigua and Barbuda had the largest presence at the market, hosting a double-booth, designed to attract members of the media with colorful, enticing images, banners, video and branded giveaways Members of the media were able to receive updates on the destination from the Antigua and Barbuda members, including CEO of the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority (ABTA), Mr. Colin James, Tourism Consultant, to the Ministry of Tourism and ABTA, Ms. Shirlene Nibbs, Director of Tourism, US, Ms. Kim Jack Riley and Director of Tourism, Canada, Mr. Colin Skerritt. Every person left the media market talking about Antigua and Barbuda, armed with further information of why the twin islands are the hottest new destination of the Caribbean.
CEO, Colin C. James stated, “Antigua and Barbuda is celebrating a year of successful anniversaries that are drawing in record numbers of visitors. In display of this positive momentum, I was incredibly proud of our dynamic and engaging presence at the Media Market, highlighting the best that Antigua and Barbuda has to offer from our strengths in romance to exciting new properties to providing the best hands down vacation experience for US visitors, resulting in incredible interest from the media in attendance.”
Since 2011, the Caribbean Student Colloquium has been welcoming students from colleges and universities across the Caribbean and the United States, who are interested in sustainable initiatives and have a desire to be involved in their implementation. The Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority also congratulates the Monroe College team who won this year’s Caribbean Students Colloquium. The team, from Monroe College’s School of Hospitality Management and the Culinary Arts won for their presentation focusing on Antigua and Barbuda, using new technology as the best method for promoting sustainable technology using UNESCO World Heritage Site, Nelson’s Dockyard and Park, as their case study. Monroe’s team, comprising of eight students, two of whom were from Antigua and Barbuda as well as various Caribbean islands were supported at the event by members of the US Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority team.