JTB head lauds the Hos­pi­tal­ity Ja­maica Awards

Jamaica Gleaner - - HOSPITALITY JAMAICA -

DI­REC­TOR OF Tourism Paul Pen­ni­cook said The Gleaner Hos­pi­tal­ity Ja­maica Awards is a great way to hon­our and show ap­pre­ci­a­tion to those who have been con­sis­tently com­mit­ted to mak­ing a dif­fer­ence in the hos­pi­tal­ity sec­tor.

Ac­cord­ing to Pen­ni­cook, the Hos­pi­tal­ity Ja­maica Awards, which is held ev­ery two years, has taken on a life of its own and is now an im­por­tant ad­di­tion to the na­tional cal­en­dar of events.

“We have all been per­son­ally elated to see this event evolve into what can now be de­scribed as one of the tourism mar­quee events in the coun­try,” he said.

“In fact, there are per­sons who are now call­ing it the ‘Academy Awards’ of the lo­cal hos­pi­tal­ity sec­tor, which, if the 2016 edi­tion is any­thing to go by, then that de­scrip­tion is not far from the truth.”

Pen­ni­cook fur­ther pointed out that show­ing recog­ni­tion and re­ward­ing ex­cel­lence can only help to boost morale and also give per­sons the mo­ti­va­tion to work harder.

“That might well be the sin­gle most im­por­tant as­pect to this kind of awards cer­e­mony,” Pen­ni­cook added. “Peo­ple are more in­clined to want to do bet­ter and give of their best if they know that their work is being scru­ti­nised and that they will be re­warded for ex­cel­lence. This is the kind of im­pact the Hos­pi­tal­ity Ja­maica Awards will have on the hos­pi­tal­ity sec­tor.”

The tourism di­rec­tor also noted that he would love to see the show move to be­com­ing an an­nual event, adding that it has the po­ten­tial to be even big­ger.

“There are more cat­e­gories that can be added to make it even big­ger,” he ad­vised. “Per­haps there could also be some more in­di­vid­ual awards. The over­all con­cept, how­ever, is a win­ning one, and I can’t wait to see what the next event will be like.”

He said the pop­u­lar choice of Ja­maica Pe­ga­sus’ owner Kevin Hen­drick­son as Gleaner Hos­pi­tal­ity Ja­maica Award’s Per­son­al­ity of the Year was well de­served, call­ing him “a gi­ant in the in­dus­try” who goes about his busi­ness in a very unas­sum­ing way.

TRUE AM­BAS­SADORS

He also sin­gled out the cabaret group, ‘Pak­age’, for its out­stand­ing per­for­mance at the 2016 awards cer­e­mony, say­ing the women who made up the trio of Pa­tri­cia Ed­wards, Gem My­ers and Karen Smith have been true am­bas­sadors who con­tinue to have a huge im­pact on the en­ter­tain­ment in­dus­try.

“Hav­ing Pak­age there as one of the fea­tured acts was a stroke of ge­nius,” Pen­ni­cook added. “They are among the best we have ever had on the cabaret cir­cuit, and it was only fit­ting that they got to be a part of the awards cer­e­mony; and based on the rous­ing re­cep­tion they got, you can see why they are so revered.”

The event, which was a joint col­lab­o­ra­tion be­tween The Gleaner (Me­dia) Com­pany and the Ja­maica Tourist Board, seeks to hon­our tourism-re­lated en­ti­ties for out­stand­ing achieve­ments on a bi­en­nial ba­sis.

Roy­al­ton White Sands and The Ja­maica Pe­ga­sus walked away with a com­bined to­tal of six awards. The other win­ners were: He­do­nism II which won two awards for Ja­maica’s Best in Cui­sine and Ja­maica’s Best En­ter­tain­ment; Chukka for Ja­maica’s Best At­trac­tion; Knutsford Ex­press for Ja­maica’s Best in Trans­porta­tion; Rain­for­est Seafoods for Ja­maica’s Best Pur­veyor; Half Moon Ho­tel for Ja­maica’s Best Eco/Sus­tain­able Re­sort; RIU Palace for Ja­maica’s Best All-Inclusive Un­der 300 Rooms; and Her­mosa Cove, which won the Special Award for Most Eclec­tic Re­sort.

The Gleaner’s busi­ness de­vel­op­ment man­ager, Nor­dia Craig, presents a gift to sponsor, Fred Smith, of Trop­i­cal Tours.

From left: Di­rec­tor of Tourism Paul Pen­ni­cook; Managing Di­rec­tor of The Gleaner Com­pany (Me­dia) Limited Christo­pher Barnes, and Basil Smith of Basil Smith and Com­pany.

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