The Saint Lucia Tourism Authority (SLTA), along with its partner agencies, Invest Saint Lucia, Export Saint Lucia, and the Citizenship by Investment Program has successfully hosted a showcase of the destination at Dubai Expo. The two-day event (Feb 21-22) featured business, tourism, and cultural activities to encourage investment and visitors from across the globe.
Day one was a Business Forum attended by more than 80 industry experts including representatives from travel brands such as DNATA, Travel Counsellors, and local operator Atlantis Holidays & Wellness. During the event, the Saint Lucia Delegation presented updates on Saint Lucia’s investment opportunities and tourism developments.
Minister for Tourism, Investment, Creative Industries, Culture, and Information, Hon. Dr. Ernest Hilaire opened the proceedings with an update on Saint Lucia’s thriving tourism sector, the importance of increasing connectivity, and developing new markets such as the UAE for both tourism and investment. He also recognized the success of the Citizenship by Investment Programme to date.
The senior SLTA delegation with the Minister for Tourism included the chairman of the SLTA Board Thaddeus M. Antoine and SLTA’s new Chief Executive Officer Lorine Charles-St. Jules. Key partners co-hosting the showcase included Invest Saint Lucia, Export Saint Lucia, and the Citizenship by Investment Program, sharing ideas and updates with guests.
Day two concluded on Saint Lucia’s Independence Day (Feb 22) with a joyous celebration of the island’s culture featuring performances by a group of local creatives covering the arts, music, fashion, and culinary delights. A highlight of the entertainment was members of Saint Lucia’s Dennery Segment, the globally successful music collective. The performances were broadcast live to thousands via FaceBook live allowing people from around the world to be part of the Independence Day celebrations.
Lorine Charles-St.Jules, CEO for the Saint Lucia Tourism Authority said; “It was a pleasure to meet our potential business partners and visitors. We updated the trade and investment community on all aspects of our work including our significant marketing programme to further drive stay-over arrivals. Our culture is something that people always highlight as a reason to visit so it was an absolute joy to bring some of our heritage and talent to entertain people on our Independence Day.”
The destination has seen a strong recovery in arrivals. In 2021, the destination welcomed 52% more visitors than in 2020 with 199,347 stay-over arrivals for the year. 2021 saw international events such as the Atlantic Rally for Cruisers successfully return to the island. Additionally, this summer, the destination is preparing to bring back Saint Lucia Carnival with ‘Vaxx Mass’.