Basseterre, St. Kitts, Monday, 5th November, 2018, (MyVueNews.com) – St. Kitts is now celebrating Tourism Awareness Month, and is using this year’s milestone to tout the achievements over the past three years.
On Sunday, tourism officials, led by Minister of Tourism, Lindsay Grant, worshipped at the People’s Evangelistic Center, at Needsmust.
Both the St. Kitts Tourism Authority and the Federal Ministry of Tourism have scheduled a series of activities to help sensitize more nationals about the need to protect, promote and preserve the hospitality sector.
During the period, 1st – 30th November, celebrations will be held under the banner, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle: “Let’s Work Together for a Greener Future”.
Amongst the developments being singled out is the opening of the Park Hyatt St. Kitts, in November, 2017, as the first such property in the entire Caribbean.
Minister of Tourism, Lindsay Grant, said the government has also announced the development of two additional premier-brand hotels, including a 125-room Ritz Carlton for the Southeast Peninsula and a 70-villa Six Senses resort for the La Vallee area – both scheduled to open in 2021.
Grant also reminded that in November 2017, the Ministry of Tourism received the top award from the Caribbean Tourism Organization, the CTO, for Excellence in Sustainable Tourism at the Climate Smart Sustainable Tourism Forum held here in St. Kitts in December.
In addition, said the minister, the ministry has collaborated with the White Gate Development to improve the Black Rocks experience and extended the benefits of tourism to more rural areas.
He said, they constructed five Kittitian Village style vendor stalls in January with another five soon to be completed, refurbished and they have built a barbeque pit with an attached verandah. Two viewing platforms will be built in the next phase of this project.
The Ministry of Tourism, stated Grant, has continued its Tourism Education program in schools to teach the principles of the tourism business to our youth, whom he said, are the greatest resources and the future of the tourism industry.
Having begun with three pilot schools, the program has now expanded to include over 360 students in six schools – four primary schools, one secondary school and one technical and vocational school.
The tourism officers work alongside teachers combining class work and field trips to various sites and attractions on island, explained the minister.
Park Hyatt St. Kitts, which helped earn St. Kitts a special mention in The Caribbean as one of the 52 Places to Go in 2018 by The New York Times, said Minister of Tourism.
He added that this year they are producing significant growth in airlift arrivals. “We recorded a 14.3% increase system wide and a whopping 20.3% increase from North America (our largest source market) for the first half of 2018 as compared to the same period last year,” said the minister.
For the month of March alone, arrivals increased 29.6% system-wide and 45.5% from North America over March 2017.
Delta added non-stop service to St. Kitts from JFK on Saturdays and from Atlanta on Tuesdays from mid-December through the end of March, complementing the carrier’s existing non-stop service from Atlanta on Saturdays.
These flights significantly expand Delta’s capacity into the destination, providing more ways for visitors to get here.
In addition, American Airlines has added a second daily non-stop flight to St. Kitts from Miami on Wednesdays, increasing our twice daily service to 5 times per week.
Then, for the first time in the island’s history, Air Canada will serve St. Kitts for a full six months for the 2018-2019 peak season.
The non-stop Saturday flights from Toronto will operate from November 3, 2018 all the way through April 27, 2019.
And, most recently, in another historic first, United Airlines will fly a second weekly non-stop flight from its New York hub at Newark Liberty International Airport to St. Kitts, complementing the carrier’s existing Saturday service. These new mid-week flights will operate on Wednesdays in peak season from January 9 through March 6, 2019.
File photo: Minister Lindsay Grant with other tourism officials at church service.