Seychelles leave World Routes with their head held high


(Posted 10th October 2013)

Seychelles’ Minister for Tourism and Culture Alain St. Ange, one of the key note speakers at the recently ended World Routes meeting in Las Vegas, used his presence in the United States to engage with the global and local media present at the event to showcase the archipelago as a destination and promote travel to the Seychelles islands, now possible from almost anywhere in the world with just one stop at any of the key hubs of the Gulf airlines flying to Mahe, Etihad’s Abu Dhabi and Emirates’ Dubai International Airport.

As small as we are in the big world of tourism, we are walking tall with today’s giants’ said the Seychelles Minister at the World ROUTES in Las Vegas, unperturbed by the archipelago missing out on the top prize as best marketed destination in the world, in the opinion of this correspondent a faux pax by the panel of judges who clearly did not connect all the dots, considering the size of the islands and the impact their global marketing juggernaut had on the world stage of tourism.
Alain St.Ange, the Seychelles Minister responsible for Tourism and Culture who was personally in Las Vegas for the 2013 World ROUTES meeting and always a perfect diplomat, said he was honoured to have again seen Seychelles nominated for the Destination category. The Seychelles Minister spoke to the press at the Garden of the Gods at Caesars’ Palace in Las Vegas,  Nevada. Tourism Australia was declared the overall winner of the World Routes Awards 2013 for best marketed destination, which was formally announced during the gala night dinner for the hundreds of delegates who had come to the US for this event. The nominated countries for this category were Tourism Australia, Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention and Visitors Bureau, Turismo de Tenerife, Republic of Turkey and the winner at Routes Africa held earlier in the year in Kampala / Uganda, the Ministry of Tourism and Culture and the Seychelles Tourism Board.

Seychelles is one country where tourism remains a key pillar of its economy. The government of these mid-ocean islands has long recognized the importance of tourism and some two years ago created a fully fledged Ministry responsible for Tourism. ‘Our tourism industry is working today more than ever before. We are small in size and budget, this we know and accept, but we work hard to remain relevant in the world of tourism and to remain visible. On a year to date basis we are recording an increase of 13% in visitor arrival numbers and this positive result has scenario has been repeated year after year since 2009 when the Seychelles relaunched its tourism industry with a new approach called the Seychelles Brand of Tourism. Today this approach is bringing result because through this brand we ensure that our people are directly involved in their country’s tourism industry. This is why the people of Seychelles support and defend their tourism industry’ Minister Alain St.Ange of the Seychelles told the assembled media houses and correspondents.

The Seychelles Minister went on to spell out that Seychelles prides itself of not only the exceptional beauty of its 115 islands made up of both flat coral islands and of lush mountain clad granitic ones, but also of its diversity in population called the Seychelles Creoles united as one people.

On the successes in the field of tourism Minister Alain St.Ange said that he cannot look at tourism figures of Australia or of the USA as all is relative. ‘We can say that ours is working because of our Tourism Master Plan drawn up from a bottom up approach after lengthy consultative meetings. Today we see that our visitor arrival numbers are over two and a half times of our total population and over five times our adult workforce. We see tourism retaining its position as the main pillar of our country’s economy. These indicators show that our industry is working for us, for our economy and for our people’ the minister added.

Seychelles, truly Another World but clearly only for those with eyes to see.

(Alain St. Ange seen here addressing the global and local media in Las Vegas)

Meanwhile, after successfully concluding the first ever Seychelles – India Day weekend, which according to reports from Victoria absolutely thrilled the locals and foreign visitors alike, is the archipelago gearing up towards the annual Festival Kreol which will be celebrated between the 25th and 31st of October and for which Creole people from around the world are expected, including the President of the Regional Council of La Reunion Mr. Didier Robert and other dignitaries from as far as the Caribbean island of Martinique. Watch this space for life updates from Victoria during the festival and reports about all that is new from across the archipelago.

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