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Monday,  February 26, 2024 3:13 AM 

Saint Lucia welcomes Marcell to Toronto

Saint Lucia welcomes Marcell to Toronto
Cheryl Francis, consul general of Saint Lucia with actor Joseph Marcell.

The Saint Lucia Tourism Authority and the Consulate General of Saint Lucia welcomed actor Joseph Marcell, renowned for playing the role of Geoffrey in The Fresh Prince of Belair, to Toronto last week in partnership with CaribbeanTales International Film Festival.

Saint Lucian nationals and media outlets were present at a VIP reception at the Jazz Bistro, featuring a presentation by the Saint Lucia Tourism Authority and product updates from Sunwing Vacations and Royalton Saint Lucia.

Island updates

Andrew Ricketts, head of public relations, Saint Lucia Tourism Authority, provided destination updates, noting that the island’s year-to-date arrival figures for the first quarter have improved by 23.4 per cent – with arrivals from Canada up an impressive 71.6 per cent.

Saint Lucia’s tourism sector, Ricketts noted, is to undergo significant expansion in the coming years, with major hotel projects meaning that the island is to add 2,000 rooms over the next 4 years.

The Royalton Saint Lucia Resort and Spa has already opened its doors this year, offering 455 rooms in two hotels – one for families, the other adults-only – while Serenity Villas at Coconut Bay Resort also recently opened, unveiling 36 luxury villas in June.

Work on the Fairmont Saint Lucia Resort is to begin this month, while Sandals Resorts International has also signalled its intention to add a fourth resort on Saint Lucia.

A new direction

Meanwhile, the island is to capitalize on the concept of village tourism, with eight fishing villages to be transformed into unique tourism villages.

Ricketts said that the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, which is part of Marriott International, has also signed a management agreement with Range Developments to open a 180-room resort on the southern tip of the island in 2021 – a project that’s expected to create 500 jobs during construction.

The island is also working with Manhattan-based marketing company Translation LLC on a rebranding of the destination, a process that aims to highlight Saint Lucia’s rich culture and arts.