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Island resorts and 5-star resorts of the Seychelles meet island's tourism minister in the presence of Hospitality & Tourism Association chairman

Island resorts and 5-star resorts of the Seychelles meet island's tourism minister in the presence of Hospitality & Tourism Association chairman ( Minister Alain St.Ange, the Seychelles Minister responsible for Tourism and Culture, accompanied by Anne Lafortune, his PS for Tourism, on Monday afternoon met the group of hoteliers falling into the group of the “One Island - One Hotel” resorts. Present also at this tourism trade meeting was Freddy Kerkaria, the Chairperson of the Seychelles Hospitality&Tourism Association (SHTA).

A number of general managers representing the island's 5-star resorts who had missed their dedicated meeting were also present as Minister St.Ange opened that meeting that was aimed at tabling the proposed official classification for the islands’ hotels and resorts.

“We are continuing this series of consultative meetings to ensure we all take ownership of the classification exercise, and secondly because the new classification of grading scheme must be what is expected of it by the county and by its tourism industry," said Minister St.Ange.

The proposal that was tabled for discussion will see hotels classified in 5 to 1 star, small Seychellois hotels and guest houses classified under the “Seychelles Secrets” scheme, and island resorts classified in a category to themselves. Discussions showed a convergence of opinion on the need for the classification program, as hoteliers present proposed the scheme is kept as simple as possible. The “One Island - One Hotel” resorts put forward their specificities and felt that these should also be looked at in the grading scheme. This is the second such meeting between groups of hoteliers and Alain St.Ange, the Minister of Tourism, and these meetings are set to continue to ensure that everyone is well briefed.

“We have heard so much about yield from the tourism industry of the country. We know today that the marketing of the islands is working, which is why we can now turn on to the product. We accept that the point often raised by the trade with regards of high operation costs needs also to be looked at, but we also need to ensure that the country sees due returns from its tourism industry," said Minister St.Ange.

The draft proposal of the new classification will be circulated to hoteliers by the first week of May, and the trade will be invited to provide their comments and feedback by May 15.

The minister explained that the structure of the property will be taken into account and also the experience and service of guests as well as a compulsory section that will ensure that the culture of the islands are showcased in hotels. This will include Seychellois Creole cuisine, performing and creative arts, and that hotel boutiques have a “Made in Seychelles” section that promotes Seychellois products.

“Tourism is more than ever before looking for culture, and that time has arrived for our tourism industry to be proud of our island's culture. Together with the trade we can initiate a new era in showcasing our unique culture to the outside world," said Minister St.Ange.


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