Sandals Resorts International recently celebrated the 17th Annual Sandals Travel Agency Recognition (S.T.A.R.) Awards – in which Canadian agents fared well – during a gala ceremony at Sandals Ochi Beach Resort.
More than 400 agents from North America, Latin America and the United Kingdom were recognized for their hard work and dedication to the Sandals brand, both during the gala awards ceremony and over the course of the entire four-day event (Nov. 28 – Dec. 2).
During this year’s S.T.A.R Awards, guests learned about the latest resort products and on-island attractions that continue to move the luxury resort brand to new heights, including Sandals’ exclusive Love Nest Butler Suites, which offer the utmost in privacy and plush elegance and Luxury Private Transfers for club and butler level guests at select resorts.
Agents also enjoyed an exclusive presentation from Marsha-Ann Brown, Director of Romance on Aisle to Isle destination wedding experience and the opportunity to explore Ocho Rios through local tours and attractions, courtesy of Island Routes. Adam Stewart, deputy chairman, Sandals Resorts International, hosted a Business Session for agents which included an address from Jamaica’s Minister of Tourism, Edmund Bartlett.
Sandals created the S.T.A.R. Awards in 2002 as a way to recognize top travel agents and their agencies, as well as showcase their latest products and on-island attractions. In addition to top product, regional and national categories, the S.T.A.R. Awards announced the Worldwide Top Ten Travel Agencies, Chairman and CEO Awards and the Lifetime Achievement Awards. Canadian agents were recognized on multiple levels including:
Chairman’s Royal Club Members: Two Canadians achieved this coveted Certified Sandals Specialist status as elite performing agents: Lois Barbour – Travel Time TPI, Kim Hartlen – Kim Hartlen Travel TPI.
Worldwide Awards: Lifetime Achievement Awards: Flight Centre Canada.
CEO Award of Excellence: Heidi Pivnick – Voyages Anne Travel.
Top Ten Travel Agencies: Travel Professionals International.
National Awards: Top Host Travel Agency, ravel Professionals International; Top Call Centre, Red Tag Vacations; Top Sandals Travel Agency, Kim Hartlen Travel TPI; Top Beaches Travel Agency, Polo Travel.
Regional Awards: Top Sandals Travel Agency, Atlantic Canada – Kim Hartlen Travel TPI; Quebec – One Love Honeymoons; Ontario – LatitudesPlus Smart Travel, Western Canada – Travel Professionals International. Top Beaches Travel Agency, Atlantic Canada – The Destination Experts; Ontario – Polo Travel; Western Canada – Carlson Wagonlit Travel.
Top Club Sandals Travel Agency, Atlantic Canada – Niche Travel Group; Quebec – Cinquieme Saison; Ontario – Vision Travel Solutions; Western Canada – Carlson Wagonlit Travel. Top Butler Travel Agency, Atlantic Canada – Kim Hartlen Travel TPI; Quebec – One Love Honeymoons; Ontario – Voyages Anne Travel; Western Canada – Travel Professionals International.
Best of The Best – Agency Recognition Awards – Canada, Carlson Wagonlit Travel; LatitudesPlus Smart Travel; RedTag Vacations; The Travel Agent Next Door Inc.; TravelOnly; Travel Professionals International; Travel Time TPI; Kim Hartlen Travel TPI; Vision Travel Solutions; Aimia Canada.
Pictured, top photo, Lois Barbour, Travel Time TPI (pictured second from right) and Kim Hartlen, Kim Hartlen Travel TPI (pictured first from right) celebrate their status as Chairman’s Royal Club members, the highest level of achievement and sales performance as Certified Sandals Specialists.
Pictured, second photo, Heidi Pivnick, Voyages Anne Travel (pictured first from right) accepts the CEO Award of Excellence from Gebhard Rainer, CEO, Sandals Resorts International (far left) and Adam Stewart, deputy chairman, Sandals Resorts International (centre).