Melia Braco Vil­lage the ‘Best of the Best’

Jamaica Gleaner - - SOMETHING EXTRA - Janet Sil­vera Se­nior Gleaner Writer janet.sil­vera@glean­erjm.com

WESTERN BUREAU: AMAICA’S ECO­NOMIC pros­per­ity mes­sage re­volves around the suc­cess of the is­land’s tourism in­dus­try, Prime Min­is­ter An­drew Hol­ness has re­vealed.

Speak­ing at Melia Braco Vil­lage’s ‘Best of the Best’ re­cep­tion in Trelawny on Sun­day night, Hol­ness pegged his hopes on the in­dus­try, which he says will take Ja­maica to the ‘prom­ise land’.

Melia Braco, af­ter a mere nine months of op­er­a­tion, was recog­nised as the Caribbean’s Lead­ing New Re­sort at the 2016 World Travel Awards, held last Satur­day night at San­dals Ochi Beach Re­sort.

Point­ing out the trickle-down ef­fect of the tourism in­dus­try, Hol­ness ref­er­enced the po­ten­tial it has on agri­cul­ture, man­u­fac­tur­ing, trans­porta­tion and the ser­vice sec­tors.

He recog­nised Ja­maica’s great­est as­set as its peo­ple, even while urg­ing stake­hold­ers that work must be done to dou­ble tourist ar­rivals and rev­enue from the in­dus­try. In 2015, the is­land wel­comed some 3.7 mil­lion stopover and cruise ship vis­i­tors.

“We have not scratched the sur­face of the po­ten­tial of tourism growth,” he stated, adding that Melia Braco Vil­lage was a good rep­re­sen­ta­tion of the Govern­ment get­ting best value for its in­vest­ment.

The re­sort is owned by the Na­tional In­vest­ment Fund (NIF) and op­er­ated un­der the Melia brand.

The govern­ment min­is­ter with re­spon­si­bil­ity for the NIF, Shahine Robin­son, said she was con­fi­dent that the pres­ti­gious recog­ni­tion was just the be­gin­ning of more to come.

Min­is­ter of Tourism Ed­mund Bartlett, also a re­cip­i­ent of the World Travel Awards for his out­stand­ing con­tri­bu­tion to the in­dus­try, cited the qual­ity of ser­vice at Melia Braco as the rea­son for cop­ping the hon­our.

“Ser­vice rep­re­sents 60 per cent of the to­tal

Jvalue of the ser­vice the vis­i­tor ex­pects, and this is what sets Ja­maica’s en­vi­able rep­u­ta­tion of re­peat busi­ness,” said Bartlett. Forty-two per cent of Ja­maica’s busi­ness comes from re­peat vis­i­tors.

“With Melia’s high-class, high-touch ser­vice, it will con­tinue to win awards,” Bartlett pre­dicted.

The ho­tel’s gen­eral man­ager, Dim­itris Kosvo­gian­nis, cred­ited his team, who he de­scribed as re­lent­less, de­fati­ga­ble and con­sum­mate pro­fes­sion­als de­liv­er­ing world-class ser­vice with pas­sion and without hes­i­ta­tion.

“It’s not a job. It is an in­tox­i­cat­ing drive,” he stated, adding that this was an award that un­der­scores the be­lief that “what­ever we set our minds to do, it is pos­si­ble”.

Melia Braco Vil­lage shared the spot­light with sev­eral other Ja­maican en­ti­ties, in­clud­ing the Mon­tego Bay Con­ven­tion Cen­tre, which was named the Caribbean’s Lead­ing Meet­ings and Con­fer­ence Fa­cil­ity; Rock House Ho­tel, the Caribbean’s Lead­ing Bou­tique Ho­tel; Mon­tego Bay, which copped the Caribbean’s Lead­ing Home Port, and Is­land Car Rentals, recog­nised as the Caribbean’s Lead­ing In­de­pen­dent Car Rental Com­pany.

HOL­NESS

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