This Week at the SLHTA, November 22nd, 2013

Friday, November 22nd, 2013  
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In This Week’s Edition
SLHTA Inaugural Platform Invitational
SLHTA V.A.T Committee Meeting
ARC Annual Flotilla 2013
SLHTA Rhythm & Spice
Next Week At SLHTA
SLHTA Celebrates 50 Years Today
Viking Adds one more Award to their Collection
Rainforest Hideaway named “Top Ten Fine Dining Restaurant” in Caribbean
Calabash Cove Resort & Spa supports “Evening of Excellence Seminar”
Employee Training is Worth the Investment
In Other News: TripAdvisor Goes Green

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“Platform Invitational”
“What Makes your establishment better than the rest?!”
As the “Voice of the Hospitality Industry“, the SLHTA is pleased to present our first ever “Platform Invitational“.  This invitational will take the form of a platform debate, where members get an opportunity to showcase the uniqueness of their respective establishments, their success stories, and reinforce or change the beliefs and attitudes of the public towards their particular establishments, within an exciting and educational platform.
This competition was organised in order to develop and strengthen the public speaking and persuasive skills of employees within the Hospitality Industry. By honing the skills of our employees we are enriching our Human Resource capacity and increasing our competitiveness on the local, regional and international levels.
The SLHTA also sees this Platform Invitational as an opportunity for participants to garner a greater understanding of their industry. This competition also has a great developmental aspect to it as the participants will undergo a series of training workshops to improve their debating skills.
SLHTA invites participation from members for this inaugural platform invitational. Send correspondences to Wendel George at or call 453 1811/452 5978.

V.A.T Committee Meeting
On Tuesday November 19th and Wednesday November 20th, 2013 the SLHTA V.A.T. Committee hosted meetings for the Independent Restaurant and Food and Beverage Suppliers sub-sectors, The Small Properties and High-End Boutique Hotels and Luxury Villas as well as the Destination Management Companies, Tour Service Providers and Boat Charters sub-sectors.
The purpose of organizing these meetings was to discuss with Members the impact of the V.A.T on their individual business operations over the past year subsequent to the implementation of the tax on October 1st 2012 and to gather feedback and recommendations from Members from the abovementioned sub-sectors on the proposed increase in V.A.T. rates scheduled to be applied in April 2014. The recommendations and feedback received by the V.A.T. Committee from the Sub-Sectors will be used to assist the SLHTA in adopting a formal position on the 2014 V.A.T. rate and to allow for a presentation to the Government on this position.

Annual Flotilla 2013
As the 28th edition of the world’s most popular sailing event – the Atlantic Rally for Cruisers (ARC) sets sail this Sunday, November 24th from Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, dozens of sea-worthy craft will simultaneously set sail from the Castries Harbor as part of the 8th annual Flotilla.
Organized by IGY Rodney Bay Marina in conjunction with the Marine Industries Association of St. Lucia, the St. Lucia Yacht Club, the Saint Lucia Tourist Board and several other corporate partners, the Flotilla is a symbolic event commemorating the official start of the ARC.
Like the over 250 plus ARC vessels which will eventually dock at the IGY Rodney Bay Marina, flotilla boats will also cross a symbolic finishing line at the Marina. With the kick-off planned for 10:00 am from the calm waters of the Castries Waterfront, the boats are expected to arrive at the IGY Rodney Bay Marina by approximately 12:30pm.


As Saint Lucia prepares to receive and play host to hundreds of sailors and their families for the ARC, the Flotilla provides a unique opportunity for Saint Lucians to be imbued with the spirit of the ARC, whilst rekindling their love for the sea.
Event organizers say registration is free and all sea-worthy craft are welcomed. A family fun-filled afternoon awaits participants at the Marina, following the conclusion of the race.
Saint Lucia has served as the finishing leg of the ARC for the past 23 years and has welcomed well over 30 thousand mariners and their families since then.
Platinum sponsor for the 28th edition of ARC is Digicel, the ‘Be Extraordinary’ network. Other corporate partners include, Silver Sponsor SOL EC Ltd and the Wave; Bronze Sponsors Chairman’s Reserve, St. Lucia Electricity Services Ltd and Heineken; Collateral Sponsor Bay Walk Shopping Mall, Bread Basket, Crystal Water, LED Ltd and Rent-A-Ride.
Follow the progress of the sailors crossing to Saint Lucia
For more information about the island of Saint Lucia call 1-800 456-3984, or 1-888 4STLUCIA or visit

Rhythm & Spice 2013


The SLHTA Rhythm & Spice Festival gets under way on Sunday 15th December 2013 at the Pigeon Island National Landmark from 11:00am.
Rhythm and Spice was conceptualized and first hosted by the SLHTA in 2006. The main objective of Rhythm and Spice was to amalgamate some of the SLHTA’s traditional fundraising efforts into one major event. The rationale was to provide members with a stage for showcasing their major products and service offerings.


Rhythm and Spice highlights the culinary skills of the Chefs and their innovation in the use of local products. An atmosphere of camaraderie and competition is created, as each team tries its utmost to win the coveted title of “Best Team of the Year”.


The event also showcases the talents of the many musical bands that regularly ply their trade at the various hotels, restaurants and other tourism establishments. They provide the musical entertainment, which is one of the highlights of Rhythm and Spice.


We look forward to seeing you this year!!

Next Week At SLHTA


Meeting of Car Rental Member Companies on Monday 25th November 2013 at the SLHTA Office.
Workplace Wellness Follow-Up Workshop at the mental Wellness Center – SLHTA EVP, Mr. Noorani Azeez will be attending.
SLHTA Board of Directors Meeting to be held at the SLHTA Office on Thursday 28th November at 9:00am.

SLHTA Celebrates 50 Years
A milestone of Great Achievements
On 22nd November 1963, the St. Lucia Hotel Association was established and lead by Mr. Leonard Headley from 1963 to 1967.  Today, 22nd November 2013 marks a notable day for celebration, reflection and appreciation as the Saint Lucia Hotel & Tourism Association (SLHTA) rejoices on this special day as this milestone of Fifty Years (50) years in existence has been reached.    The Secretariat is currently planning and finalizing a Calendar of Events to commemorate our 50th Anniversary and these activities will be shared with the Membership.


We thank our Members for the continued loyalty and support shown over the years as we commit to the tagline “Together for a better Saint Lucia” . We look forward to celebrating with you all.



Viking Products at
ANUGA Food Fair 2013

This year Viking Traders participated at the ANUGA Food Fair 2013, the biggest food fair in the world. Viking Traders Ltd was founded by Mr.& Mrs. Ed Zephirin since Jan 1979. The name Viking signifies strength, invention and innovation which is the hallmark of the top quality products being manufactured today.


Viking Banana Ketchup and Viking Banana Barbeque sauce were selected by Specialty Food Magazine as one of the 5 most inventive international products in the 2013 edition of this big show.


According to Specialty Food; “Bananas Enter the Condiment Aisle: The Caribbean is well known for its rum cake, but its vast banana production is where creativity is ramping up. Banana ketchup is on offer from two Caribbean producers, both based in St. Lucia: tomato lovers will enjoy Baron Foods’ tomato and banana blend, while purists will be drawn to Viking Traders’ version, made with pure banana puree. Mild spices fleck both condiments, which have a satisfying thickness to brighten sandwiches or burgers. Viking also offers a honey banana barbecue sauce-said to be the first of its kind-ideal to add a tropical twist to summer grilling.”


To read the full story please click below:

Rainforest Hideaway in Marigot Bay
Listed in Caribbean’s Top Ten Fine Dining Restaurants


Rainforest Hideaway in Marigot Bay has won a coveted 2013 TripAdvisor ‘Travellers’ Choice’ award which lists it as one of the Top Ten Fine Dining Restaurants in the Caribbean.
Christine Petersen, President of TripAdvisor for Business, says “TripAdvisor is thrilled to recognize favourite restaurants in some of the most popular destinations around the world, from hidden gems to world-famous eateries. Remarkable cuisine, exceptional service and great value are the hallmarks of our Travellers’ Choice Restaurant awards”


Rainforest General Manager, Jean Rene Du Boulay, said ‘we are very proud to be the only St Lucian restaurant to receive this award and to be recognised as one of the best fine dining restaurants in the Caribbean. Since we built Rainforest nine years ago we have been dedicated to providing the best possible dining experience for St Lucians and visitors alike. Rainforest has a wonderfully creative team of chefs and a professional front of house crew who work to ensure a magical experience for all our guests.’
The award places Rainforest in a peer group with such well known restaurants as The Cliff in Barbados, ZoZo’s Ristorante in St John, BVI,  L’Estraminet in St Maarten, Windows on Aruba and Pikayo in Puerto Rico.


Built out over the calm waters of Marigot Bay – reached only by a two minute ferry boat ride – Rainforest has a unique ambiance and has often been called the most romantic restaurant in the Caribbean. A great place for intimate, waterside dining as well as birthdays and celebrations. 
Rainforest prides itself on using only the freshest available ingredients, locally sourced wherever possible. The fine dining menu is a subtle and sophisticated fusion of Caribbean and International flavours, using herbs and fruits from our own gardens.  Local fish is served wherever possible including lionfish – which is currently threatening St Lucia’s reefs but is delicious to eat.
Right now, Rainforest has extended its special “Summerlicious” programme for St Lucian residents to the end of November – so now is the time to come to Marigot for a magical evening and dine at one of the best restaurants in the Caribbean at a very affordable price!

Luxury Caribbean Resort Supports
Evening of Excellence Seminars

Patrons attending the upcoming motivational evenings of excellence in Florida and New York have a chance to win a vacation at one of the Caribbean’s luxurious boutique resorts.


Tucked away on gently sloping tropical beachfront on the northwest coast of St. Lucia, the luxurious Calabash Cove Resort and Spa in St. Lucia has announced its support of the upcoming events, during which motivational speaker and author Zhivargo Laing will inspire audiences as he talks about issues of economic prosperity.


Laing, a former government minister now serial entrepreneur from the Bahamas, will share his ideas on “the power to be better in good times and bad” at the free seminar sponsored by Wells Fargo Home Mortgage.


The events will be held at Sheraton Ft. Lauderdale Airport & Cruise Port Hotel (1825 Griffin Rd, Dania, FL 33004) on Wednesday, December 4, and at Finn Partners in New York City (301 E 57th St, 4th Floor, New York, NY 10022) on Thursday, December 5.


Laing will be joined by Cerita Battles, senior vice president and head of retail diverse segments at Wells Fargo Home Mortgage, who will deliver opening remarks.


Calabash Cove is keen to be a partner for this empowering and motivational series,” commented general manager Konrad Wagner, who noted that his resort welcomes many residents from both the northern and southern seaboards of the United States. “These markets are very important to us here at Calabash and, of course, to St. Lucia as a destination.”


Both events, which run from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., are free to the general public, however space is limited.
Refreshments will be served and a drawing for a stay at Calabash will be raffled to a lucky winner each evening.


Nestled in the sheltered bay of Bonaire Estate, Calabash Cove is perched on a hillside sloping gently towards the Caribbean Sea, where cool ocean breezes provide a wonderful respite and the turquoise sea is offset by the vibrant green of tropical vegetation and views of Walcott Island. A secluded beach sheltered by a nearby coral reef provides the perfect place to rest, reflect and dream.


The resort has been designed with great care to complement and exist in harmony with the beauty of its natural surroundings. The main buildings of the hotel, such as the lobby, restaurant, bar, sanctuary, and infinity pool with waterfall lie on a slope, with the Villas amidst lush vegetation perfectly situated to view nightly sunsets.


The natural elements of earth, wind, light and water are represented in the exotic wood, stone and natural materials used in the composition of the buildings. The peaceful and tranquil gardens, under the care of one of the finest landscape architects in the Caribbean, have been created to capture and optimize the natural splendor of the area and are filled with vibrant, fragrant flowers set amidst tree groves.

To register, click here:

Employee Training is Worth The Investment

A recent survey indicates that 40 per cent of employees who receive poor job training leave their positions within the first year. They cite the lack of skills training and development as the principal reason for moving on.


Consider the cost of turnover. With one fewer worker, your company’s productivity slips. Sales decline. Your current staff members are required to work more hours. Morale may suffer. To find a replacement, you spend time screening and interviewing applicants. Once you hire someone, you need to train that person.  The cost of staff turnover adds up. Figures vary, but it can cost as much as $2,500, depending on the position, to replace a frontline employee. That is a hefty price to pay for not training staff.


Despite the initial monetary costs, staff training pays back your investment. Here are just some of the reasons to take on development initiatives:
  • Training helps your business run better. Trained employees will be better equipped to handle customer inquiries, make a sale or use computer systems.
  • Training is a recruiting tool. Today’s young workers want more than a paycheque. They are geared toward seeking employment that allows them to learn new skills. You are more likely to attract and keep good employees if you can offer development opportunities.
  • Training promotes job satisfaction. Nurturing employees to develop more rounded skill sets will help them contribute to the company. The more engaged and involved they are in working for your success, the better your rewards.
  • Training is a retention tool, instilling loyalty and commitment from good workers. Staff looking for the next challenge will be more likely to stay if you offer ways for them to learn and grow while at your company. Don’t give them a reason to move on by letting them stagnate once they’ve mastered initial tasks.
  • Training adds flexibility and efficiency. You can cross-train employees to be capable in more than one aspect of the business. Teach them to be competent in sales, customer service, administration and operations. This will help keep them interested and will be enormously helpful to you when setting schedules or filling in for absences. Cross-training also fosters team spirit, as employees appreciate the challenges faced by co-workers.
  • Training is essential for knowledge transfer. It’s very important to share knowledge among your staff. If only one person has special skills, you’ll have a tough time recouping their knowledge if they suddenly leave the company. Spread knowledge around – it’s like diversifying your investments.
  • Training gives seasonal workers a reason to return. Let seasonal employees know there are more ways than one to contribute. Instead of hiring someone new, offer them a chance to learn new skills and benefit from their experience.
Learning and upgrading employee skills makes business sense. It starts from day one, and becomes successive as your employees grow. Granted, it may take some time to see a return on your investment, but the long-term gains associated with employee training make a difference. The short-term expense of a training program ensures you keep qualified and productive workers who will help your company succeed. That’s an investment you can take to the bank.



TripAdvisor Goes Green
At the moment this scheme is only applicable to hotels and b&b’s in the USA, where TripAdvisor has assessed over 2100 properties, all now displaying TripAdvisor GreenLeaders badges.


However, the plan is to expand the GreenLeader movement in the near future as eco awareness goes global. Here is one example of a GreenLeader’s listing on TripAdvisor, which enables you to click on their GreenLeader rating to gain more details of their practices.


Full details here: WTTC
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