JTB, MBCC laud Hospitality Ja awards
Mark Titus, Gleaner Writer
Western Bureau: The eyes of the world will be on the Montego Bay Convention Centre, St James, on October 25 when The Gleaner's premier tourism product, Hospitality Jamaica, celebrates its 10th anniversary in a style befitting its enviable allure in the Caribbean.
To add star power to the event, the crème de la crème, in terms of tourism personalities on both the Jamaican and regional hospitality landscape, are poised to converge on the nation's tourism capital to celebrate outstanding performers in the sector.
Drawing on the vast experience of Janet Silvera, Hospitality Jamaica's coordinator since inception, The Gleaner launched the now highly respected tourism-trade publication as a fortnightly magazine in October 2004. Since then, it has maintained a steady growth in readership and popularity and is now a staple among tourism interests.
Looking ahead to the gala-style celebrations, Jamaica's Director of Tourism, Paul Pennicook, says the Jamaica Tourist Board is elated to be onboard as the event's main sponsor as it sees the event as an opportunity it could not afford to miss.
"We are very pleased with the introduction of the Hospitality Jamaica Tourism Awards," said Pennicook, a veteran in the tourism sector. "We have had tourism awards for different sectors of the industry, but this is the first time that industry players from across the board will be recognised by a tourism-focused publication."
He added: "Jamaica's tourism product is outstanding, and this kind of recognition will serve as a motivator to keep improving. The Jamaica Tourist Board is pleased to support the Hospitality Jamaica Tourism Awards."
Some 10 categories will be up for grabs, including the Best EP, Best All-inclusive, Best Small/Boutique, and Best Eco/Sustainable Hotels.
Other categories include, a Best Purveyor, Best Transportation (ground or air), Best Attraction, Best in Entertainment, Best Convention Centre, and Best Cuisine. Additionally, an individual in the sector, who has excelled over the years as an ambassador of the industry, will be recognised.
"We're thrilled to be involved with this timely, forward-thinking project," said Dittie Guise, the Montego Bay Convention Centre's general manager. "SMG, our management company, has deep roots in Jamaica, and we've always maintained that what's good for Jamaica is good for us."
Guise added: "By bringing new energy and ideas to news gathering and distribution in the country, we expect Hospitality Jamaica to go a long way toward improving civic participation, raising public discourse and adding to Jamaica's vibrancy as a place to live, work and do business."
In coming onboard as one of the sponsors of Hospitality Jamaica's 10th anniversary awards, Guise said the Montego Bay Convention Centre's involvement would help to solidify its position as a loyal supporter of Jamaica's tourism.
"With the sponsorship of the inaugural Hospitality Awards Banquet, we are cementing over three years of loyalty to, and enthusiasm for the work of the Hospitality Jamaica magazine. Sponsoring Hospitality Jamaica's 10th anniversary award is not only a milestone for MBCC, but excitingly, it is also the first-ever award banquet to be hosted by The Gleaner, and we are happy to be a part of it," stated Guise.