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Select Brands, Secrets Resorts launch wine competition

Published:Thursday | January 8, 2015 | 12:00 AM
FILE Emilio Huhn
FILE Andrea Allie-Thorpe

Selling wines requires a vast and solid understanding about the various types of wine, but wine production is an art by itself - one that necessitates a combination of experience, knowledge and precision.

There are several wine experts, tasters and sellers in Jamaica, but there are limitations as to how much one can learn about the wine industry, being in Jamaica. And so, still considered relatively young players in the industry, Select Brands has teamed up with Secrets Resorts to give away $1,000,000 in cash and prizes to the resorts' wine sellers.

The top prize includes an all-expense paid trip for the two top wine sellers to Argentina next April. The competition started in December and ends in March 2015, ahead of the trip. Debra Taylor, Select Brands wines marketing manager, said the four-day trip would see the pair learning more about wine production, food and wine pairing, touring vineyards, among other areas of the industry. And as part of the synergy between Secrets and Select Brands, any of the resorts' restaurants that sells the most wines on any given month, its manager will receive a $10,000 cash prize.

"We formed a partnership with Select Brands when they were established three years ago. We wanted to partner with them because we saw that they were strong in the wine industry and we believed it was the best company to have teamed up with," said Emilio Huhn, Secrets Resorts general manager. Huhn said the venture has resulted in a marvellous outcome between them, inclusive of the resorts' wine sellers benefiting from training, enabling them to promote the wines to their guests and increasing sales.


Trip to Argentina


Human resources director, Andrea Allie-Thorpe, said Secrets was always proud of their recognition and rewards programmes, adding that the planned trip for their employees to Argentina was another example of how rewarding it is to work at Secrets Resorts.

"The partnership between Select Brands and Secrets in sending our employees to Argentina serves as a significant level of inspiration and motivation among the employees. This has taken us a long way in not just helping our wine sellers to be better sales people, but better employees as well," Allie-Thorpe said. She added that with the type of rewards programmes that exist at Secrets, the employees have realised that ultimately hard work does pay off.

Meanwhile, Taylor said there would also be consolation and monthly prizes for other wine sellers, including a 36-inch HD television set, an iPhone, dinner for two, gift vouchers, as well as Jazz and Blues tickets.