St. Lucia & Bahamas recognized for resiliency at Marketplace

Saint Lucia and The Bahamas were named the recipients of this year’s Caribbean Destination Resilience Award during the 42nd Caribbean Travel Marketplace taking place this week in Montego Bay, Jamaica.

“These awards are aimed at recognizing destinations with a deliberate focus on resiliency as indicated by their commitments to address some or all of the UNWTO’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals,” said Vanessa Ledesma, acting CEO and director general of the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association.

“Special emphasis is placed on recognizing destinations with a collaborative and initiative approach to engaging public and private sector stakeholders in innovative needs-driven strategies.”

About the awards

Presented by the CHTA, the awards are handed out to two destinations, differentiated by the amount of annual stay over visitors they receive.

The judging criteria encompassed five main themes: Commitments to Partnership and Collaboration, Sustainable/Resiliency Related Activities, Innovation and Technology, Linkages and External Engagement, and Contribution of Initiatives to Tourism.

Category A, for destinations with more than 500,000 annual stopover visitors, went to The Bahamas.

“The Caribbean Destination Resilience Award is a real achievement for the Abacos, and the thanks go out to the many public and private entities that have come together and worked in partnership to make sustainable tourism a priority to preserve, protect, and promote the area as a travel destination with a strong future,” said Chester Cooper, deputy prime minister and minister of tourism, investments & aviation for The Bahamas. “From mangrove restoration to energy conservation, and the promotion of community-based tourism activities that celebrate the islands, the Abacos are proof positive that collaboration is the way to address the important issues of the day.”

The Bahamas’ winning submission showcased the resilience of the Abacos post-Hurricane Dorian.

Category B, for destinations with under 500,000 annual stopover visitors, went to Saint Lucia.

“This accolade recognizes the island’s exemplary leadership, innovative strategies, and collaborative efforts by both public and private sector stakeholders to advance sustainability in tourism,” said the St. Lucia Tourism Authority.