Dave Cox has plenty of reason to sing the praises of Barbados these days.
Cox, creative director of magazine Living Barbados, which he’s promoting as a tool for travel agents wanting to sell Barbados, thanks to its numerous articles and information on the destination, said during a Thursday Toronto event that the destination is continually adding to its tourism draws and that includes a February opera celebration on the island that will attract Torontonians involved in that type of musical expression. Opera isn’t music traditionally associated with Barbados or other parts of the Caribbean, but Cox and Barbados Tourism Marketing say the upcoming event underscores that diverse tourism offerings are found in Barbados.
“We want to do something different,” Cox said of Island Opera, which will have a “fusion of cultures.”
“We offer a comprehensive experience,” added Stacey Hutchinson of Barbados Tourism Marketing’s Toronto office.
Hutchinson said Barbados celebrating the likes of its cuisine throughout this year, and other festivals found on the island – among them one promoting diving and snorkelling in local waters and December’s Run Barbados, which features different running races and attracts local and international runners – demonstrates that it’s not simply a sun-and-sea destination.
Meanwhile, Hutchinson said perceptions that Barbados – home to many upscale resorts – may only be for affluent travellers are unwarranted.
“You can still have that nice budget experience,” she said while adding “there’s something in Barbados for every budget. We’re intensifying our efforts to tell travel agents about the diversity of the accommodation options.”
Pictured are Hutchinson, a server with a tray of rum punches, Ethel Hansen Davey of Uniglobe and Cox.