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SHTA – The Hospitality and Tourism Association of the Seychelles says that the Praslin tourism establishment door-to-door visits can only bring forward positive results

August 27, 2014 Destination Global No Comments Email Email

Seychelles-TravelThe Seychelles Ministry of Tourism and Culture remains committed in its endeavor to complete the marathon door-to-door visits of hotel establishments they was started on the island of Praslin.

continuation visit of tourism establishment on praslinFollowing multiple days of intense stop-overs at small and large hotels, self catering establishments and stand alone restaurants and cafes on the island of Praslin, the Minister responsible for Tourism and Culture accompanied by the Senior Management Staff from his Ministry are reaching the finishing line for the exercise on Praslin.

During the last leg of the visit which started on Friday 22nd August until Saturday 23rd, Alain St.Ange, Minister for Tourism and Culture, Anne Lafortune, Principal Secretary for Tourism and Sherin Naiken, the CEO of the Tourism Board and her Deputy Nathalie Didon were accompanied on their door-to-door walkabout by Freddy Karkaria, the Chairman of Seychelles Hospitality and Tourism Association (SHTA).

It’s the first time that Mr Karkaria in the capacity as Chairman of Seychelles Hospitality and Tourism Association travelled with the Ministerial delegation on the door-to-door visit at Praslin.

The focus of this latest visit was to cover a further 19 establishments that have much value to tourism industry of the Island.

It was evident in this two day door-to-door visit that the island of Praslin had so much home grown restaurants and shall tourism establishments owned by Seychellois that are working well and contributing to economic development of the island.

Breeze Cafeteria at Grand Anse, Ristorante da Luca Gelateria at Cote d’Or, P K’s Pasquiere Restaurant & Gastro Pub, Bonbon Plume at Anse Lazio, Le Chevalier Bay Guest House & Restaurant at Anse Lazio and Cafe le Monde at Amitie are showing positive signs of growth.

As competition gets tougher within restaurant owners, new innovations are continuously being announced and implemented in a bid for the island’s restaurateurs to remain ahead of the pack.

Some restaurateurs are being more PR savy using promotional flyers whilst others are keeping up with new trend based on visitors expectations and are offering for example authentic sea food platter which remains a mouth-watering success among Chinese holiday makers. Others have moved to even construct an open fire pizza oven which has helped create a new ambience at L’Amitie. The most daring are moving with technology offering hot spot Wi-fi connections to all their clients.

Alain St.Ange, the Minister for Tourism and Culture and his delegation took time to listen to restaurant’s success stories and plans to expand their business. He learnt about Bonbon Plume’s plans to relocate their popular beachside restaurant and Breeze Cafeteria to open a playing ground for children.

Restaurant owners located at Anse Lazio, Praslin’s most visited beach raised the issue of lack of public transports to board and drop off passengers closer to the beach.

Ongoing issues with regards to signage and licensing were also put to the attention of the Minister and his delegation. The continued operations by illegal boat operators taking excursions from beaches at Cote D’Or was seen as a threat to the tourism industry and many establishments owners said that this was but a catastrophe waiting to happen. Minister St.Ange encouraged restaurant owners to continue to market their brand and speciality and to remain focussed on their business despite the challenges they are being faced with.

The various stops at Self catering establishments showed those owners tireless effort to market their products and keep their establishments working to their satisfaction.

Owners of Villa Confort at Amitie, Bonnen Kare at Consolation, Cocobay Villa at Anse Volbert, Jardin Marron, Villa Manoir and Maison du Soleil  at Anse Boudin, Villa Anse La Blague and Tranquility at Anse La Blague gave Minister St.Ange and his delegation which included Freddy Karkaria, the Chairman of the SHTA a good tour of their operations.

Most of these establishments are marketing their products on-line and they are also targeting domestic tourism.

Minister St.Ange took time to discuss the need for every small hotel owner to work with local DMCs to grow their business further. “You should not only rely on online marketing but to also work with local DMCs because that brings added coverage in Tour Operators programs” Minister St.Ange said.  The door-to-door visits gave Mr Freddy Karkaria,  the Chairman of Seychelles Hospitality and Tourism Association a firsthand impression of the Ministry of Tourism and Culture’s drive to remain connected with people involved in the industry.

“I believe these 2 days on Praslin have been extremely useful, and an eye-opener for us. Hearing and understanding together the issues faced by the trade, directly from different owners and managers of various establishments, has provided us with wide-ranging facts and information from which we can identify and list out priority issues that are common to most and that need resolution, some urgently and others in due course.’’  Mr Karkaria outlined.

Mr Karkaria added the door-to-door series of visits can only bring positive results for tourism industry.

In a year when our tourism industry is facing multiple challenges, and the SHTA has intensified the frequency and level of consultation with the various authorities of government, I believe that the Ministry of Tourism and the SHTA visiting and consulting members of the trade together can only bring forward positive results in our mutual quest to overcome the trials and tribulations many tourism businesses, small and large, are battling with today.

He concluded that the next monthly meeting with Minister St.Ange and his senior team will be an opportunity to examine the results and a plan of action to come.

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