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Grenadian Hotelier Sir Royston O. Hopkin, KCMG, Receives Caribbean Lifetime Achievement Award


Honor Presented by Caribbean Tourism Organization at Plaza Hotel in New York


Sir Royston O. Hopkin, KCMG, owner and chairman of Spice Island Beach Resort ( http://www.SpiceIslandBeachResort.com) in Grenada, has received the ultimate honor from the Caribbean governments with the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) Lifetime Achievement Award for 2011. He is the first hotelier and Grenadian to receive this accolade from the governments, which follows his being knighted by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II as well as a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association (CHTA).

He was presented with the prestigious CTO Lifetime Achievement Award at the Rhythms of the Caribbean Ball at the Plaza Hotel in New York., “It is a true honor to be recognized by the Caribbean governments and the ministers and directors of tourism with the CTO Lifetime Achievement Award,” said Sir Royston, who used his acceptance speech to appeal to Caribbean prime ministers, tourism ministers and other government officials to commit to a policy-driven strategic approach to a consolidated regional marketing program for the Caribbean.



"For years we have been unable to get together while other regions of the world have been promoting themselves in a unified manner," said Sir Royston. "These regions will surpass us if we don't get our act together," he cautioned. "If we can recognize that travel and tourism is so important to our economies as the single largest contributor to GDP in the Caribbean, isn't it high time we commit ourselves to a sustainable approach to marketing?

"We need a joint marketing program, not only for the U.S., but for all of North America, the UK and Europe," challenged Sir Royston. "And it needs to be policy driven. "Once our governments agree on a consolidated program that is policy driven, the entire private sector will get behind it – the Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association, the airlines, all tourism stakeholders coming together as one unit.

"We've been talking for two decades, but have achieved little momentum because we're competing against each other instead of pooling our resources. And as we are fragmented, so has been the private sector's support for our largest industry. And now it's reached the point where we're falling behind as a region," noted Sir Royston. "The world is in such dire financial crisis, we can't afford to continue with business as usual. As the backbone of our economies, tourism deserves more than just lip service. Now is the time to come together. It's a simple matter of survival."

Sir Royston's impassioned plea to Caribbean governments was equally balanced with remarks of elation and gratitude:
“I am fortunate to be able to contribute to both Grenada and the wider Caribbean community and thankful for the recognition that my efforts over the years have received. I thank all of those with whom I have worked in Grenada and throughout the region, and I hope to have touched their lives in some small way as all of them have enriched my life over the past 47 years. “I firmly believe in the richness of the Caribbean's natural resources and culture, and am proud to work each day for the sustainability of our region's tourism. My career has blessed my family with opportunities to live, learn and share and we strive to always offer our time, talent and resources to help others achieve their dreams – from vacations, to employment, to the overall betterment of the region.”

The CTO Lifetime Achievement Award honors long-serving, high-performance professionals whose careers have truly made a difference in the Caribbean. The award is for achievement over a period of several years rather than a single contribution. It recognizes achievement that distinguishes the individual's work and provides a legacy for future generations. “Sir Royston has been a faithful servant of Grenadian and Caribbean tourism and his dedication has been fully demonstrated through his many outstanding achievements,” said Hugh Riley, CTO's secretary general.

For more information about the award-winning 64-suite Spice Island Beach Resort, visit www.SpiceIslandBeachResort.com, call (473) 444-4258 or e-mail: reservations@spicebeachresort.com.

For further information on the CTO Lifetime Achievement Award, visit www.onecaribbean.org or contact the CTO New York office at CTOny@caribtourism.com.
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