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Egypt’s finest travel brands come good

Egypt’s finest travel brands come good ( SHARM EL SHEIKH, Egypt - The resilience of Egypt’s travel and tourism industry has been acknowledged at a VIP gala ceremony hosted by World Travel Awards (WTA) at SOHO Square, Sharm el Sheikh, the Red Sea’s premier dining, shopping, and entertainment complex.

A number of Egyptian tourist attractions, hotels, and organizations emerged victorious at the WTA 2011 Africa and Indian Ocean Ceremony on September 16, 2011.

Winners included the Pyramids of Giza, which beat off stiff competition from Victoria Falls, Serengeti National Park, and Mount Kilimanjaro to win “Africa’s Leading Attraction.” Meanwhile Egypt Air saw off the likes of South African Airways, Air Namibia, Kenya Airways, and Royal Air Maroc to collect “Africa’s Leading Business Class Airline.”

Sierra Resort Sharm el Sheikh was voted “Egypt’s Leading All-inclusive Resort.”
Other blue ribbon winners included Cape Town voted “Africa’s Leading Destination;” Abercrombie&Kent winning “Africa’s Leading Luxury Tour Operator;” and Saxon Boutique Hotel&Spa, South Africa, named “Africa’s Leading Boutique Hotel.” Meanwhile, Sonava Gili won “Indian Ocean’s Leading Luxury Resort” and the Maldives picked up “Indian Ocean’s Leading Honeymoon Destination.”

The industry’s elite – including government ministers, tourist board chiefs, and CEOs of blue-chip travel companies – traveled from across Africa and the Indian Ocean to attend the glittering gala ceremony, which was headlined by Lebanese music sensation Carole Samaha.

The raft of media in attendance included National Geographic Traveler, Discovery Channel, Newsweek, Weltexpress, and Times of India.

Graham E. Cooke, President and Founder, World Travel Awards, highlighted travel and tourism’s crucial role in Egypt’s new era of democracy and opportunity.
He said: “Egypt is proving a textbook example of world-class destinations demonstrating an incredible ability to bounce back. Its phenomenal array of attractions – from the Pyramids of Giza and the temples of Luxor to the diving and beaches of Sharm El Sheikh – will ensure that tourism remains integral to the evolution of the new Egypt.

“Hosting our Africa and Indian Ocean Ceremony in Sharm el Sheikh is a celebration of how travel and tourism is serving as a force for good and a catalyst for change,” he added.

SOHO Square’s pedestrianized square mile comprises restaurants, shops, and entertainment facilities. The complex forms part of the Savoy Group, which also comprises three luxury properties: the Royal Savoy and Villas, the Savoy Hotel, and the Sierra Hotel. The hotels enjoy access to some of the most sought-after diving and snorkeling in Sharm el Sheikh.

Emad Aziz, Chairman, Savoy Sharm el Sheikh, said: “From the mountains of Sinai to the shores of the Indian Ocean, hundreds of thousands of people in the hospitality and travel industry demonstrate day in and day out the unfailing welcome they offer. This region is becoming the most sought-after destination for discerning travelers. We are proud of the achievements of all and celebrate the extraordinary examples of the winners of these, the most prestigious awards a hotel could receive.”

The WTA ceremony comes ahead of Egypt hosting the United Nations World Tourism Organization’s World Tourism Day, which will be celebrated in the city of Aswan on September 27.

The Africa and Indian Ocean Ceremony marks the third heat of the WTA 2011 Grand Tour. Regional legs will follow in Bangkok, Thailand (September 28) and Montego Bay, Jamaica (October 19).

The event partners were SOHO Square, Savoy Hotels&Resorts International, BBC World News, and WeClickMedia, and the media partners included Magic 105.4, ABTA Magazine, eTurboNews, Breaking Travel News, Passport Magazine, National Geographic Traveler, and Vox Africa.

For the full list of Africa and Indian Ocean winners visit .

MEDIA CONTACT: Anton Santos, T: +44 (0)20 7925 0000, E: , W:

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