Eight tourism ambassadors were on Tuesday honoured by the Guyana Tourism Authority (GTA) for their contribution to enhancing travel experiences and services, according to the Department of Public Information (DPI).
Those who were awarded were: Adrian Sheram of Old Fort Tours & Resort for Tour Guide of the Year; Rewa Eco-Lodge for Most Outstanding Community-led and Owned Tourism Enterprise; the Canadian Executive Service Organisation (CESO) for Most Outstanding Contri-bution to Tourism by an NGO/Volunteer group; Kings Hotel for Service in Tourism Accommodation/ Establishment; Backyard Cafe for Service Quality in Tourism; Hits and Jams for Tourism Entrepreneurs; White King Ranch for Tourism Recognition and Surama Eco-Lodge for the People’s Choice Award for Sustainable Tourism.
At the GTA’s 11th Awards Ceremony held at the Pegasus Hotel, Director Brian Mullis thanked those who have helped the agency in its mission to propel the development of the travel and tourism sector within the country.
“We are really excited to celebrate those persons who have gone above and beyond to make the Guyanese travel and tourism sector be not only special in our part of the world but special globally,” he was quoted as saying. According to DPI, Mullis noted it is crucial to avoid the mistakes made by other countries and to promote a sustainable approach to tourism development including best practices. According to the GTA Director, this includes the establishment of the Living Destination Development Plan which essentially compliments the Green State Development Strategy – 2018-2025.
He said that this initiative is, “the blueprint for where we should invest, create new attractions among others based on market demand; move away from a supply-driven approach to tourism development to a market-driven development to markedly increase the success of any new travel and tourism ventures.”
The director added that the agency has also gone through restructuring to generate positive outcomes and outputs. At a leadership level, capacity building exercises were undertaken which will lead to further training programmes for 2019 as well as the establishment of a cooperative database of programmes for future collaborations, the DPI release added.
President of the Tourism and Hospitality Associa-tion of Guyana (THAG) Mitra Ramkumar, reiterated the need to adopt the best sustainable practices at a country level in the development of tourism. He added that this includes a concerted effort on the part of citizens to reconnect with nature, in light of the fact that the large majority of persons reside in the city.