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ST. LUCIA BRAVES HURRICANE DEAN

(Forimmediaterelease.net) Island's tourism industry back in business

NEW YORK (August 18, 2007) – The eye of Hurricane Dean spared St. Lucia's tourism infrastructure from its wrath. It glanced past north of the island as a Category 2 storm this week.

Director of Tourism Maria Fowell reported today that the airports in the north and in the south of the island were open for business, and American Eagle has resumed flights to George F. L. Charles Airport with additional services scheduled to move delayed passengers between San Juan, Puerto Rico and the island.

Fowell added that all roads affected by landslides have now been cleared and are passable, facilitating access between the north and south. Additionally, electricity has been restored and businesses resumed operations on Saturday.

Minister of Tourism and Civil Aviation Senator Allen Chastanet reported that government authorities are making admirable progress cleaning up debris littered throughout the island. Similarly, hoteliers have reported no significant damage to their properties as they complete the clean-up this weekend.

“We are pleased to announce that St. Lucia is indeed open for business, and we have already welcomed new visitors from Europe, North America and the Caribbean,” said Chastanet.

Senator Chastanet, who also is chairman of the Caribbean Tourism Organization, added “Our prayers are with our brothers and sisters in the Eastern Caribbean who have been affected by this storm and those in the Central and Western Caribbean who are preparing for its passage over the next few days.”

Maria Fowell, who is en route to the Midwestern United States to promote St. Lucia’s tourism offerings to travel agents, said, “We’re thankful that the island is back to full operational capacity, due in part to the spirit of the St. Lucian people and the fact that the hurricane passed the island in its early stages.”

She too empathized with her Caribbean neighbors and prayed for minimal loss of life and property in the ensuing days.


ABOUT ST. LUCIA

One of the Windward Islands of the West Indies' Lesser Antilles, St. Lucia (pronounced Saint LOO-sha) is halfway down the eastern Caribbean archipelago. The “Helen of the West Indies," St. Lucia is known for its natural beauty and diverse attractions, including the signature Piton Mountains, recently named a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, a tropical rain forest and one of the world's few drive-in volcanoes. Culturally rich offerings include the bustling marketplace in the capital of Castries, a variety of Heritage Tourism sites, quaint fishing villages along the coastline, the annual St. Lucia Jazz festival in May, and in November, the second Food and Rum Festival. St. Lucia's wide range of accommodations include world-class, five-star resorts; all-inclusive
resorts; intimate inns and value-oriented properties.

For further information, call 1 (800) 456-3984 or 1 (888) 4-STLUCIA (in the United States), 1 (800) 869-0377 (in Canada); or visit www.stlucia.org, the official website of the St. Lucia Tourist Board.

Bevan Springer + 1 201 861-2056
bevanspringer@nj.rr.com

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