CTO conference generated $1 million in publicity

POSTED: 10/9/11 10:19 PM

MARIGOT – The Tourist Bureau in Marigot considers the CTO State of the Industry conference that was held in September a success, despite a negative article in the online newsletter Travel Weekly that heavily criticized the treatment international journalists had to endure.

Tourist Bureau President Ida Zin-Ka-Ieu valued the media coverage the four-day event generated at more than $1 million. Asked about the Travel Weekly article wherein Gay Nagle Myers blasted the conditions at the Le Domaine hotel in Anse Marcel and the way the organization treated journalist, Zin-Ka-Ieu said that she welcomed the criticism.
“There were 64 journalists, and one of them wrote a negative article,” she said.
“Who are we going to listen to? But we thank Gay Nagle Myers for expressing what she felt during her stay in St. Martin. That gives us the opportunity to do better. We want to give our visitors an experience to the best of our abilities. Criticism gives us the opportunity to modify what needs to be modified. But as the Tourist Bureau, we are here to promote St. Maarten and to make sure that people talk about the island. We are not hotel directors.”

The State of the Industry Conference is an annual event of the Caribbean Tourism Organization CTO. This year’s conference attracted 301 participants from 24 countries. The conference was covered by 56 media – 31 print and online, 10 radio-stations, and 15 TV-stations.
Tourist Bureau director Sylviane John gave an overview of the lectures and presentations that were held at the conference in the Westin Hotel on the Dutch side. One of these presentations focused on the Caribbean reality. The conference called for zero tolerance on crime, for paying attention to environmental concerns and to the quality of service.

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