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TCI heads to WORLD Travel Awards

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Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer

 

#TurksandCaicos, September 2, 2022 – The Turks and Caicos is the most romantic destination in the Caribbean according to the world travel awards.  The Island netted multiple titles on Wednesday night at the annual WTA ceremony for its tourism excellence.

The islands were up for 8 awards across several of the most coveted categories including:

  • Leading Beach Destination
  • Caribbean‘s Leading Cruise Destination
  • Caribbean‘s Leading Destination
  • Caribbean’s  Leading Dive Destination
  • Most Romantic Destination
  • Caribbean’s Leading Honeymoon Destination
  • Leading Luxury Island destination, and
  • Caribbean’s Leading Tourist Board 2022

The Turks and Caicos won two of those 8 nominations:

  • Leading Beach Destination, and
  • Most Romantic Destination

Multiple companies in The Turks and Caicos also walked away with top spots, those companies included:

  • Leading All Suite Hotel – The Palms
  • Leading Beach Resort – Amanyara Turks and Caicos
  • Leading All inclusive Family Resort – Beaches Turks and Caicos
  • Leading Luxury Island Resort – Sailrock Resort Turks and Caicos
  • Caribbean’s Leading Hotel Suite – Villas Grace Bay Penthouse Suite at Grace Bay Club

The host country Jamaica took home the lion’s share of the prizes, as tourism stakeholders from across the Americas met in Montego Bay on August 31st for the event.

Attending for the Turks and Caicos were Josephine Connolly, Minister with responsibility for Tourism, accompanied by Permanent Secretary Cheryl-Ann Jones, the acting Director of Tourism, Mary Lightbourne and Mr. Caesar Campbell.

The World Travel Awards is the premier Travel Awards ever  for hoteliers worldwide, and awards for the various categories come with major bragging rights and major exposure.

Caribbean News

Several earthquakes felt in region over the weekend, cause for concern

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Rashaed Esson

Staff Writer 

December 10, 2023 – Multiple earthquakes were felt last weekend, Friday night into Saturday, a cause for concern among citizens.

Recorded near Guadeloupe, Antigua and Barbuda and Monsterrat, was a 6.0 magnitude at around 4:48 am at a depth of 16 kilometers (km).

The University of the West Indies, Seismic Research Centre’s (UWI-SRC) Automatic Earthquake Location informed that it struck Point-à-Pitre, Guadeloupe at 71 km north-east, Saint John’s Antigua and Barbuda at 89 km south-east and Brades, Montserrat at 120 km east.

After this, another tremor with a magnitude of 4.4 was recorded northeast of Guadeloupe, southeast of Antigua and east of Montserrat at around 6:29 am local time, with a depth of 10 km.

The Automatic Earthquake Location says for Point-à-Porte it was 76 km northeast, Saint John’s, 91 km south-east and Brades 123 km east.

On Friday, several earthquakes were recorded in the same chain of islands, reports say.

At 10:31 pm, a magnitude 4.3 hit in the same area with a depth of 7.7 km.

Then, a 4.4 magnitude was picked up with a depth of 34.8 km at around 11 pm local time; Pointe-à-Pitre, 120 km northeast, Saint John’s 131km east-south-east and Brades, 164 km east.

Not even 2 minutes after, a 3.6 magnitude occurred at 11:01 pm with a 5 km depth and shortly after another at 11:13 pm, with a 3.8 magnitude at a depth of 10 km; 115 km of Pointe-à- Pitre, north-east, 138 km, east-south-east of Saint John’s and 173 km east of Brades.

St Kitts and Nevis was also affected as a 3.8 magnitude struck near the islands as well as Antigua and Barbuda dams Montserrat at about 8:17 pm, a depth of 80.6 km.

As informed by the Automatic Earthquake Location from the UWI SRC, it is 70 km north of Basseterre, St Kitts and Nevis, 133 km northwest of Saint John’s Antigua and Barbuda and 134 km northwest of Brades, Monsterrat.

Despite the multiple tremors felt, no injuries or damages were reported.

Responding to concerned citizens, the UWI SRC in a statement said, “please note that our region is a seismically active one and we can feel events in a short period of time. This is why we always urge persons to plan, prepare and practice for any earthquake event.”

Just about a month ago, Jamaica was struck by a 5.4 magnitude earthquake, one the strongest it has felt in about 30 years, leaving many shaken up.

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CHTA President, Members Triumph at 2023 CMEx Leadership Awards

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#Miami, Florida, December 10, 2023 – President of the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA) Nicola Madden-Greig, OD, received the 2023 Caribbean Media Exchange (CMEx) Leadership Award in Miami over the weekend.

The Awards recognize excellence and innovation in Caribbean communication and hospitality, celebrating individuals who have made significant contributions to sustainable tourism, community engagement, and cultural preservation.

“As president of the CHTA, I want to see the Caribbean region not only grow but reach the stratosphere. I am honored to be among so many other persons who work so hard and tirelessly to see Caribbean tourism advance. I thank each and every one of you for your efforts, which has inspired me to continue to work hard to ensure that we reach our goals,” Madden-Greig told a packed audience at Loews Coral Gables on Saturday.

Grateful for the honor, Madden-Greig stated, “Thank you to the CMEx Awards for providing us the opportunity to recognize Caribbean hospitality leaders and communities. This recognition lets us spotlight the true value of hospitality, emphasizing its impact on the economy and beyond.”

Since assuming the Presidency of CHTA, Madden-Greig has taken a forward-looking approach and added both a Technology Taskforce to ensure the embedding of new technologies to drive efficiency and marketing, as well as the Caribbean Travel Forum, which engages private and public thought leaders to discuss the business of tourism.

During the awards, several CHTA members were also recognized with Leadership Awards for their efforts in shaping the region’s tourism landscape.

CHTA-member honorees included:

  • Beverly Nicholson-Doty, CEO of Figment Design, a CHTA Strategic Partner
  • Dona Regis-Prosper, Secretary-General & CEO of the Caribbean Tourism Organization and a CHTA Board Member
  • Ewald Biemans, Owner/CEO of Bucuti & Tara Beach Resort in Aruba and CHTA Board Member, whose company also received a Hall of Fame recognition at CHTA’s Caribbean Hospitality Industry Exchange Forum (CHIEF) earlier in the week
  • Joy Jibrilu, CEO of the Nassau Paradise Island Promotion Board
  • Stan Hartling, Chief Executive Officer and lead partner of The Hartling Group, Turks and Caicos Islands

“These accolades reflect the commitment of our president and our members to elevating the Caribbean tourism experience,” said Vanessa Ledesma, Acting CEO and Director General of CHTA. “Their achievements inspire us all as we continue to work together towards a vibrant and responsible future for Caribbean tourism.”

CMEx supports and develops the ability of the media, government, the travel and tourism industry, and communities to consider the importance of tourism in sustainable development, while lending a hand to the communities involved by sharing relevant expertise, financial and in-kind assistance.

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Caribbean News

Strengthening Regional Response to Outbreaks:  CARPHA Conducts a Simulation Exercise for Member States

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Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago.  10 December 2023.  On Thursday 7th December 2023, the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) will be conducting a Regional level Outbreak Simulation Exercise (SimEx) with its Member States, and Regional Agencies.

“A regional SimEx is extremely valuable in emphasising the integrity of the Region’s existing response mechanisms, while revealing strengths and any weaknesses. This can then guide relevant persons in reinforcing the mechanisms and addressing any issues which may be noted during the exercise,” stated Dr Joy St. John, CARPHA Executive Director.

“Exercise Elkhorn” is a tabletop exercise carried out remotely by virtual connection and will focus on a single outbreak.  This approach will utilise a realistic, scripted scenario to assess plans, policies and other preparedness measures, through in-country group discussions and utilising problem-solving skills.

Over 36 participants representing Ministries of Health, and other government agencies, regional organisations, and project partners, will attend the exercise.

The aim of the SimEx is to improve preparedness and response capacities of health systems for public health emergencies in the Caribbean region.   The main objectives in the public health context are to:

  • Assess the scope of the incident in keeping with National Multi-Hazard Plans;
  • Validate how national leadership communicates and coordinates to facilitate decision-making;
  • Assess the understanding of procedures for the mobilisation of national resources (including financial, human, procurement of medical supplies, etc).

Overall, this training exercise will provide participants the opportunity to review response procedures and test their countries’ established coordination and decision-making processes within a realistic scenario. Additionally, the exercise would seek to strengthen multisectoral collaboration and integrative surveillance towards achieving resilient and responsive mechanisms.

The Regional Simulation Exercise was developed as a deliverable of the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) Regional Health Project (P168539). The project through funding by the World Bank was implemented across four CARPHA Member States (Dominica, Grenada, Saint Lucia, and St. Vincent and the Grenadines) and by CARPHA and the OECS Commission. This Simulation Exercise is related to Component 2, subcomponent 2.2.1.6 – Simulation Exercise on responding to public health emergencies.

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