Local media personnel, Thursday night in the west coast community of Canaries, received a firsthand understanding of the concept of community-based tourism at a cocktail reception held specifically to emphasize how this type of tourism can develop communities and provide more of what Saint Lucia offers to visitors.
The Saint Lucia Tourism Authority which organized the reception planned it at the perfect venue to underscore how easily the community tourism concept could be achieved if it is properly understood.
The venue was once the home of villager, Marcus Antoine, who took the bold step some years ago to do something different in the world of entrepreneurship. Risking it all, he obtained a bank loan to turn his home which was sitting on 10,000 square feet of land, into what is now known as Bocean Villa, a spectacular structure devoted to offering visitors a local experience that allows them to immerse themselves into local life, where much can happen; for example, learning a culture which is different from their own.
This small, yet gem of visitor accommodation, is part of a collection of small accommodation options the Authority is offering to visitors the world over alongside its range of spectacular resorts.
Advertised as Collection de Pepites, which showcases a broad selection of unique island jewels, including local villas, B&Bs, boutiques and inns, this concept goes beyond the usual and offers visitors who are looking for something that is off the beaten track, a special kind of experience that goes right to the heart of what is truly Saint Lucian – an adventure in local culture.
According to the Authority the name Collection de Pepites originated from Saint Lucia’s French heritage and means a collection of small pieces or nuggets of gold. Many of those accommodations offer distinct opportunities for visitors to discover culture, culinary and wellness experiences.