After a few years out of the Canadian travel trade spotlight, the Anguilla Tourist Board is getting the message out to travel advisors that the unique Caribbean destination is ready to welcome even more visitors this winter.
Visiting Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal this month, the tourist board was recently on the road with a travelling agent showcase, bringing Canadian travel advisors up to speed on the latest offerings. Despite not maintaining an active presence in Canada over the last 12 years, Canadian arrivals were nonetheless up in 2019, said Anguilla Tourist Board Chair Donna Banks.
“We’ve seen increases up to end of July 2019,” she told PAX. “We had a 10 per cent increase over 2014, which was our highest period. We’ve not been actively engaged in the market for a number of years, so awareness is not where we want it. We see the potential in Canada – it has been growing – we have the access.”
While no direct flights from Canada to Anguilla currently exist – yet – it’s easier to reach the destination than many travellers think, Banks said.
From Toronto, travellers can head to St. Martin and transfer via air from Princess Juliana Airport or take one of the regular ferries from the neighbouring island.
With a diverse range of accommodations – from “very luxurious to traditional villas,” Banks said – there’s something for everyone.
“Anguilla is for that traveller that can appreciate the simplicity of the destination, the laid-back lifestyle,” Banks told PAX. “The traveller who wants eclectic dining and not fast food, for example. Because of safety and security, it’s great for families and singles and honeymooning couples.
“In Anguilla, it’s not in your face; you can have a quiet vacation or where you explore the entire destination.”
New and notable
Property updates for the 2019-20 winter season include:
- Zemi Beach House Hotel & Spa, the first property by LXR Hotels & Resorts – Hilton’s luxury collection brand – in the Americas and Hilton’s first property in Anguilla, will bring 65 rooms to the island in November;
- Family owned and operated Frangipani Beach Resort on Meads Bay, a premier luxury boutique resort, has recently completed a solar panel field, which will allow 70 per cent of the resort to be powered by solar energy – the largest sustainable project in Anguilla for a boutique resort;
- Malliouhana, Auberge Resort Collection re-opens its doors for the season on Nov. 1, 2019, unveiling a brand-new resort that has been restored and enhanced;
- Tranquillity Beach Anguilla, a brand new luxury boutique resort on magical Meads Bay Beach, opens Dec. 21, 2019, featuring 15 beachfront, one- to three-bedroom luxury resort condominiums available for rent or purchase.
Incoming agent training
Banks said that while Anguilla will focus its agent-training efforts on the U.S. market, there are plans in place to bring more support to Canadian agents in the future.
“We’re looking forward to a great season from the Canadian market and we’re ready to welcome everyone,” Banks said.
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