A signature activity in US, the St. Kitts Tourism Authority conducted its 1st annual Destination St. Kitts & Nevis US Roadshow 2018 from Monday, April 23 to Friday, April 27. The weeklong series of events was held in New Jersey, New York and Atlanta in order to grow these gateway markets and, in the case of Atlanta, support the Midwest flow market, all of which support St. Kitts’ target demographics and current airlift. These events were designed to educate travel agents, tour operators, MICE planners, media, experiential lifestyle consumers and St. Kitts & Nevis diaspora about everything the destination has to offer travelers.
“Connecting face-to-face with travel industry professionals in the top gateway and feeder markets for our nonstop flights is a vital part of our marketing strategy,” said Racquel Brown, CEO of the St. Kitts Tourism Authority. “It is important to develop strong, lasting relationships with these individuals and expand our base of ambassadors in order to grow arrivals into the destination year over year.”
Nick Menon, Chairman of the Board of the St. Kitts Tourism Authority, added, “I am very pleased with the quality of attendees and overwhelming success of the week of events. The responses we have been receiving from the media, tour operators, travel agents, MICE planners, golf consumers and diaspora including members of the St. Kitts and Nevis Association of Atlanta with whom we interacted has been nothing but positive.”
Kicking off the week of events on Monday were networking functions held at Caffe Aldo Lamberti in Cherry Hill, New Jersey, an affluent suburb of Philadelphia, and at the Molly Pitcher Inn in Red Bank, New Jersey, an upscale borough in the northern part of the state near the shore. On Tuesday, the delegation interacted with guests at a high-tech, virtually immersive event at Lightbox NYC where video of the destination played on all four walls of the venue. After flying to Atlanta on Wednesday, the action continued in upscale suburbs of the city, with events at The Manor Golf & Country Club on Thursday and the Grand Hyatt Buckhead on Friday.
The events each attracted between 35 and 65 attendees, all of whom were top travel professionals representing some of the most respected organizations in the business. In addition to being treated to videos and lively conversation with representatives from St. Kitts, the individuals played games, listened to presentations and won a variety of prizes from a hotel stays to island or catamaran tours and bottles of Brinley Gold Shipwreck rum to golf round trip VIP airport transfers, all of which were donated by participating tourism stakeholders. At the Lightbox and Manor events, the Grand Prize included two round trip tickets to St. Kitts as provided by Delta Airlines along with hotel stays and tours. As a result, many of the attendees are now adding St. Kitts & Nevis as a featured destination they will sell, promote or visit.
The delegation from St. Kitts consisted of: Nick Menon, Chairman of the Board of the St. Kitts Tourism Authority; Racquel Brown, CEO of the St. Kitts Tourism Authority; Avenice Thompson, Director of Marketing of the St. Kitts Tourism Authority; Denise Zimber, Christina Mucha and Michelle Reed, Marketing Consultants for the St. Kitts Tourism Authority; Tom Jaronski, Golf Consultant for the St. Kitts Tourism Authority; Adriana Suao, Vice President – Account Services, and Stephany Bermudez, Creative Director, of Tambourine; and Candice Kimmel, CEO and Founder, and Cathy Preece, Vice President & Accounts Supervisor, of Adams Unlimited, PR & Marketing Agency for the St. Kitts Tourism Authority.
A number of tourism stakeholders from St. Kitts & Nevis were also part of the delegation, including: Chris Ghita, General Manager, Ocean Terrace Inn; Kayrecia Simmonds, Manager, Kantours Destination Services; Marielle Alexander, Manager St. Kitts & Nevis, Sunlinc; Christine Marshall and Rachel Roland, Sales Managers for Park Hyatt St. Kitts; Sylvia Martinez, Director of Sales and Marketing, St. Kitts Marriott; Jennie Luppinacci, Owner, Hermitage; Natalie John, CEO, Dreamy Weddings; Cyndi Miller-Aird, President, Miller + Aird Destination Marketing for Belle Mont Farm; Jamar Wilkins, Travel Industry Sales Manager, Four Seasons Resort Nevis; and Darren Thompson, General Manager, Royal St. Kitts.