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Saint Lucia Shines at World Travel Awards

The destination was recognized for three coveted titles amidst the celebration of its ‚ÄėCreoleness‚Äô

PM Philip J. Pierre alongside key tourism officials accepting one of three coveted awards
PM Philip J. Pierre alongside key tourism officials accepting one of three coveted awards

With a haul of three coveted global titles, Saint Lucia shared the spotlight during the staging of the 30th Anniversary celebrations of the World Travel Awards Gala ceremony, as the island hosted the prestigious event last Saturday, at Sandals Grande. 

The event, which gathered delegates from across the Caribbean, marked a significant milestone for the island nation, coupled with its remarkable victory in securing three significant titles. This was Saint Lucia’s second hosting of the WTA function; the event was last held here in 2004.

Notably, Saint Lucia was named the ‚ÄėCaribbean‚Äôs Leading Honeymoon Destination‚Äô an impressive 14 times, as well as being awarded the title of ‚ÄėCaribbean‚Äôs Leading Adventure Tourism Destination‚Äô twice. The island has also been recognized as the ‚ÄėCaribbean‚Äôs Leading Nature Destination‚Äô for its dedicated efforts to preserve its natural wonders.

Regarded as the industry’s equivalent of the Oscars, the World Travel Awards is a globally acclaimed platform that celebrates excellence across the travel, tourism, and hospitality sectors. Since its inception in 1993, the awards have embraced various categories encompassing destinations, hotels, airlines, cruise lines, tour operators, and travel agencies.

‚ÄúWe are proud of our extraordinary physical beauty, but more importantly‚Ķis the warmth of our people, the welcome that we provide. We celebrate our ‚ÄėCreoleness‚Äô, seven times British, seven times French ‚Ķand throughout Saint Lucia, you can enjoy that fusion of the different cultures,‚ÄĚ Minister for Tourism and Creative Industries Dr. Ernest Hilaire told the gathering.

‚ÄúHosting the 30th Annual World Travel Awards Gala has allowed us to showcase Saint Lucia‚Äôs exceptional hospitality and rich cultural heritage. Our receipt of three prestigious accolades adds an extra layer of honour to this occasion,‚ÄĚ said the minister.

‚ÄúThese acknowledgments reinforce our position as a premier global destination and motivate us to continuously deliver unparalleled world-class experiences, spanning adventure, romance, and the marvels of nature,‚Ä̬†he added.

WTA President Graham Cooke defined the awardees as the ‚ÄúTorch Bearers of Tourism Excellence‚ÄĚ, adding that they were delighted to host the event in Saint Lucia with persons that make up the ‚Äúdriving forces of our industry‚ÄĚ present ‚Ķ

‚ÄúFrom the leading nations, spanning the length and breadth of the Caribbean and the Americas ‚Ķit is a pleasure to recognize your achievements… You will help us raise the collective benchmark once again for our industry,‚ÄĚ said Cooke.

He described the destination as possessing, ‚Äúbreathtaking beauty with volcanic mountains magically rising from the clear blue seas, paradise beaches, lush forests, and a rich cultural heritage.‚ÄĚ

Cooke noted that because of this unprecedented development, Saint Lucia is on course to benefit from ‚Äúan increase of more than 10% in visitor numbers this year, when compared to 2022. International travellers are increasingly aware of the offerings here and in the Caribbean.‚ÄĚ

The WTA official recognized the input from the host venue, Sandals Resorts International, as they have been ‚Äúan invaluable partner of the World Travel Awards for the past three decades.‚ÄĚ He also spoke about the support from the Saint Lucia Tourism Authority [SLTA] and the Saint Lucia Jazz & Arts Festival personnel.

Sandals Managing Director for the OECS Winston Anderson noted that ‚ÄúThe World Travel Award is the benchmark for the tourism sector‚Ķand in the industry, we all know it as the journey that is equally as exciting as the destination.‚ÄĚ

He noted: ‚ÄúThe Travel and Hospitality sector is a key economic pillar upon which many of our economies in the region are founded. And we know that no one can do (perform) hospitality like we do, right here in this little corner of the world.‚ÄĚ

Furthermore, a commendable achievement was extended to eighteen of Saint Lucia’s esteemed service providers, who also secured noteworthy 2023 titles:

Anse Chastanet:¬†Saint Lucia‚Äļs Leading Wedding Resort

Barefoot Holidays: Saint Lucia’s Leading Destination Management Company

Cap Maison Resort:¬†Saint Lucia‚Äļs Leading Resort

Jade Mountain:¬†Saint Lucia‚Äļs Leading Honeymoon Resort & Caribbean‚Äôs Leading Luxury Honeymoon Resort

Coconut Bay Beach Resort & Spa: Saint Lucia’s Leading Beach Resort

Fond Doux Eco Resort: Caribbean’s Leading Green Resort

Ladera Resort:¬†Saint Lucia‚Äļs Leading Green Resort

Rabot Hotel by Hotel Chocolat: Saint Lucia’s Leading Hotel

Sandals Grande:¬†Saint Lucia‚Äļs All-Inclusive Resort & Caribbean‚Äôs Leading Honeymoon Resort

Sixt Car Rental: Saint Lucia’s Leading Car Rental Company

Sugar Beach, A Viceroy Resort: Caribbean’s Leading Luxury Resort

The Landings Resort and Spa:¬†Caribbean‚Äļs Leading Hotel Suite

Ti Kaye Resort & Spa:¬†Saint Lucia‚Äļs Leading Boutique Resort

Travel & Leisure Centre:¬†Saint Lucia‚Äļs Leading Travel Agency

Solar Tours & Travel:¬†Saint Lucia‚Äļs Leading Tour Operator

Windjammer Landing Villa Beach Resort:¬†Saint Lucia‚Äļs Leading Family Resort

Zo√ętry Marigot Bay St. Lucia:¬†‚ÄúSt Lucia‚Äļs Leading Luxury Hotel Villa 2023: Penthouse Three Bedroom Residence with Plunge Pool @ Zo√ętry Marigot Bay St. Lucia.‚ÄĚ

According to an SLTA spokesperson, “This collective success is a testament to the dynamic collaboration fostered under the banner of Brand Saint Lucia, both domestically and on the global stage.

‚ÄúThe Saint Lucia Tourism Authority is confident that these remarkable accomplishments will further elevate the reputation of our cherished nation.‚ÄĚ

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