November 23, 2007
Hoteliers hopeful despite seeing slow bookings

Local hoteliers are keeping their fingers crossed, that the new tourist season, which has begun a bit slowly, will pick up in a rush.{{more}}

This view was expressed by Executive Director of the St Vincent and the Grenadines Hotel Association, Dawn Smith, who told SEARCHLIGHT that while things have shaped up okay, they are looking forward to it getting much better.

“We are grateful, we are seeing bookings but it could be much better,” Smith said.

“Bookings seem to be coming in late,” she said.

Smith said that one of the weaknesses that has affected St Vincent and the Grenadines is marketing.

She said that over the last two years proper marketing was not done in the region; a main market for this country.

Smith however said that this (marketing) is currently being done in several territories within the region, including Trinidad, Grenada, Barbados and Puerto Rico; a joint effort between the Ministry of Tourism and the association.

Smith, who spoke to SEARCHLIGHT during last weekend’s Vincy Flavours competition at Heritage Square, said she still remain concerned about the quality of service being offered at Vincentian establishments.

Smith however said that the hotels are trying, and training is constantly offered at various levels.

She told SEARCHLIGHT that she is hopeful that when a school of hospitality is established, hopefully in the next year or two, all aspects of the industry will be improved drastically. (KJ)