Welcome to this 32nd edition of Vol 3 of the Saint Ange Tourism Report of 2019. An important week for the Indian Ocean Vanilla Islands as the French President Emmanuel Macron visited Mayotte and Reunion Islands.
This visit should have helped to bring the Indian Ocean Vanilla Islands into the spotlight and help indirectly the six islands tourism. He was part of a positioning exercise for Reunion aptly called "Choose Reunion".
Seychelles, Mauritius and South Africa makes the list of best African countries to visit in 2019
Ahead of the pack is a good place to be when competing for the same holiday makers. Mauritius ranked 54 on the world wide Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index measures is followed by South Africa at 61 and Seychelles at 62. Topping the list as the best is Spain, France, Germany, Japan, the USA, United Kingdom, Australia and Italy. Many African mainland countries find themselves trailing totally at the bottom of the list. How visible is the country? how does tourism benefit the people and the economy of the country? and how sustainable is the tourism industry? continues to play a big part in making it on this Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index List.
These are the best and worst countries for tourists to visit in 2019, according to the WEF’s Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Report 2019. For over a decade the hashtag#WorldEconomicForum engaged leaders in hashtag#travel and tourism to carry out an in-depth hashtag#analysis of the travel and tourism (T&T) competitiveness. Published biennially, the hashtag#Report benchmarks the T&T competitiveness of 140 hashtag#economies and measures the set of factors and policies that enable the sustainable development of the T&T sector, which in turn, contributes to the hashtag#development and hashtag#competitiveness of a country.
In 2018, according to the hashtag#WorldTourismOrganization, the number of international tourist arrivals worldwide reached 1.4 billion, two years before it was predicted to do so. That year also marked the seventh year in a row where the growth in tourism exports (+4%) exceeded the growth in merchandise exports (+3%). Given this rapid pace of growth, the prediction that international arrivals will reach 1.8 billion by 2030 may be conservative. This presents enormous potential for the sector and economies globally as travel is further democratised. https://lnkd.in/dw2Hn4p How does your country rank?
Top 3 African countries hashtag#Mauritius (Number 54) hashtag#SouthAfrica(Number 61) hashtag#Seychelles (Number 62)Seychelles at Tang Soo Do karate in Netherlands for the European World Championship - wins 32 medals
To the Black Belt team for the assistance. Last but not least, to our host country, thank you so much for your hospitality as always and for making us feel so welcomed"
Seychelles present at the One Young World Summit at Royal Albert Hall in London
Congratulations to Anael Bodwell of Global Shaper, Victoria Hub for joining all nations of the world at one of the most global and youthful event of the year "The One Young World Summit 2019". Anael Bodwell said that she was proudly flying the Seychelles flag in this sea of colours, culture and people.
Her bio states:- "Anael is a part-time Accounting and Finance student where she hopes to become a chartered accountant. She currently works full-time at the Office of the Auditor General in Seychelles. Anael was a board member of the Seychelles National Youth Council (SNYC) for 2015-2017 and also the Vice-Curator for the Victoria Hub in 2016. She is the co-founder of two national youth NGO chapters and has vast experience in civic work. Anael has experience in finance, budgeting, accounting and journalism; skills which she actively uses to carry out civic/community projects. Anael was a blogger and co-founder of the online newsletter ww.ptidetay.com in 2016. She was a nominee for the CEPS Volunteer Award in Seychelles and globally, nominated for the 120 young people under 30 working in the area of Family Planning. Anael is an ardent advocate for the sustainable development goals, with a special interest in poverty alleviation and health/well-being. Her contribution to community projects won her the Queen’s Young Leader’s Award for 2018".Seychelles Fashion Week is coming
Lucía García, the Senior Conference Producer | Routes has confirmed that they are working on an aviation ministerial meeting on tourism in Africa is scheduled at the event. The organisers have confirmed that they are looking on how can we make the air transport market in Africa work better exploring the need of the ministries to work in harmony to form a cohesive picture to promote a destination. Routes Africa is working to get together ministers of tourism from the region to offer the tourism authorities and ministries a platform to develop those conversations with the industry stakeholders and improve the connectivity of the region and to use the event as a platform to move forward on the Single African Air Transport Market Agreement and ensure that connectivity from Africa to the world and also intra-Africa to help support its social, economic and political integration.
The Routes Africa event will also focus on the infrastructure implementations needed to meet the SAATM and the opportunities that the Continental Free Trade Agreement could bring to the intra-Africa trade and tourism.
It is important to again acknowledge all who are diligently re-posting the Saint Ange Tourism Report weekly. Our Report ranges far and wide, from Australia to the Americas, from the Indian Ocean Vanilla islands to Africa & Asian and Greater Europe, with your continued support, which is greatly appreciated. You are helping us to grow from strength to strength with each new Edition.
Enjoy the read,
Saint Ange Consultancy
Creole Travel Services of Seychelles celebrates its 20th Anniversary
Creole Travel Services is one of the leading destination management companies (DMC) of the Seychelles Islands and they have just celebrated their 20th Anniversary at Cap Lazare on Mahe in the presence of Didier Dogley, the island's Minister of Tourism, Anne Lafortune, the PS for Tourism and many tourism industry professionals inclusive of their staff past and present.
Creole Travel Services is a family owned and operated business, falling under the extensive umbrella of the JFA Group of Companies. JFA would be the initials of the literal “founding father” of Creole and affiliated companies, Mr. Joseph France Albert, the Chairman and father to CEO, Mr. Guillaume Albert. Through his hard work, Mr. Albert has built his entire empire from scratch and with the help of Guillaume and his sons the Albert legacy continues to grow and prosper.
When it all started:-
The 20th Anniversary Celebrations of Creole Travel Services was the opportunity for everyone present to hear the historical notes on how it all started for Joe Albert. The DMC started off as Creole Holidays until it merged with Travel Services Seychelles, giving birth to Creole Travel Services – a nationally recognised and celebrated tourism brand.
Creole Travel Services has offices in the three main islands of Mahé, Praslin and La Digue – key destinations to offer their clients a wide range of products and services that are unique to each.
Creole Travel Services said that they strive to be the complete package as a destination host, wanting to be able to cater to the needs of their clients from airport meet and greets, transfers, tours, accommodation and entertainment. They are able to accomplish this in synergy with our sister companies.
Their airport staff welcomes clients as soon as they step out of the arrival doors, and guide them into the Creole Exclusive Lounge at the airport, or straight on to their awaiting transfers to bring them to their respective hotels.
To bring clients to neighbouring Praslin and La Digue islands from mainland Mahé, the company’s sister Inter-Island Boats Ltd. provides the fastest ferries crossing the islands on the high speed catamarans, the Cat Cocos fleet, with a seating capacity from 227 to 475 passengers.
Creole’s Le Domaine Collection features 4-star properties on Praslin and La Digue islands. The first built by the family was the Le Domaine de L’Orangeraie on La Digue, featuring 63 stunning villas and the Eden Rock Spa, highlighting local architecture and the warmth of wood in a pure Zen style. Le Domaine de La Reserve on Praslin has its own exclusive beach, Anse Petite Cour, and faces the Curieuse Island Marine National Park. The hotel offers 40 rooms housed in traditional Creole style buildings, and boasts one of the largest swimming pools in the Seychelles.
To entertain their guests, Creole offers a wide variety of activities to not just show you the islands, but to encourage you to take part of and learn from the culture and traditions. Creole can whisk you away on both land and sea, often blending both within the same excursion, on their twin catamarans: the Oplezir and Odezir. Easily identified by the giant frangipani insignia on their matching sails, the team will guide you into discovering why the Seychelles is often called the last paradise on Earth.
Creole love their young guests too! Through their Looker 440GB, the Zephir, a semi-submersible vessel can immerse you and your children into the unique underwater world of the company’s marine parks. Young minds will be thrilled as they learn to identify different fish species and other sea creatures, dry and safe onboard the open air deck.
Nature is important not just to the Seychelles, but to Creole and the Albert family too, and Creole can show you just how beautiful the country is by bringing you to their exclusive property in the south of Mahé, the Cap Lazare Nature Reserve. An extensive 65 hectare protected area, they offer a unique restaurant in the shape of an oversized open air, A-frame, thatched roof hut. Other amenities include a helicopter pad, nature trails, view-points and a small area with farm animals, a hit with children. Furthermore, the beach attracts hawksbill turtles to lay their eggs during nesting season. A perfect location for corporate and private events, Cap Lazare has hosted everything from exclusive weddings and corporate parties.
As the modern traveler evolves into being more independent and seeking for more than the regular tourist attractions, Creole welcomes the changes and challenges, for they believe that they must evolve along with their clients’ needs, travel goals and advancing expectations.
As issues of climate change and the need for more conservation efforts grow, Creole is fully onboard to take on its responsibilities as a company to contribute in their roles towards the well-being of the Seychelles’ and the world’s environment. Creole have pledged to go green, to ensure that the beauty that they show and share with their clients today, will still be here tomorrow for our future generations and visitors to their country. They have signed up with Travelife, “a leading training, management and certification initiative for tourism companies committed to reaching sustainability”. They are “dedicated to making holidays more sustainable”, working with “travel businesses around the world to help them improve their social, economic and environmental impacts”. By working towards their Travelife certification, Creole will have to undergo changes in how they operate their business in a socially and environmentally sustainable manner. This is something they are very excited about, and are prepping themselves to ensure they can meet the criteria required.
Creole Travel Services has used their 20th Anniversary Celebrations to refreshing their brand and showed to guests present two newly branded excursion busses. Their iconic frangipani is symbolic to Creole and what they represent, and they are keeping with their strengths, and improving on where they feel they can and should. Although they will always be professional in their functions and communications, they are moving away from being overly “rigidly corporate” in how they market themselves. They are a young and dynamic company, who aim to reignite in their partners, their clients, and the world – and themselves, of course – the passion and excitement for the Seychelles islands.
Indian Ocean Lodge of Praslin promotes the Creole Culture as the islands celebrate its Festival Kreol
This beach front property remains a much loved hotel of Praslin Island where a lot of effort is placed on providing the plus for visitors.
A photo that has attracted the attention of many is the effort to revive the traditional method of grilling fish using the stem of young coconut leaves over a charcoal grill. Finette Didon, a long time Chef of the hotel complex has been photographed personally showing off this traditional approach to grill local mackerels .
Congratulations to the Management and Staff of the Indian Ocean Lodge for being present with the island's culture during this year's Kreol Festival. Their can be no tourism without culture and the ongoing effort by the lodge on Praslin is appreciated. These special occasions always continue to enhance the Dining facilities at Indian Ocean Lodge. This beach front hotel is renowned for the Peace and Authenticity. it provides That is what the hotel Team says they can promise during your Seychelles holiday. Nothing less, and probably quite a bit more.
The Indian Ocean Lodge is tucked away in their own little private corner on the island of Praslin. The Indian Ocean Lodge is an affordable small hotel establishment completely owned, and operated, by Seychellois.
"From our cuisine, to the interior decor, to the warm faces greeting you at each turn, every quality about our hotel is meant to provide you with a truly authentic Seychelles experience" says a representative of the hotel.
The Indian Ocean Lodge is a relaxing haven to unwind, a convenient location from which to explore the sights, sounds and tastes of these magical islands, and a peaceful night's sleep after the day is done. All in a family-like atmosphere that expects nothing more from you than your own comfort and well-being.
The Indian Ocean Lodge is situated right along the beach of Grand Anse, just on the outskirts of the tiny village by the same name. Grand Anse is one of the longest beaches on the island, with shallow flats that extend far out to the reef, and water barely lapping along the shore. This makes it ideal for family activities or simply strolling up and down the coastline.
The hotel is just a 5-minute drive from the Praslin airport, 15 minutes from the Baie Ste Anne Jetty, about 20 minutes from Cote D’Or beach (a hotspot for diving and island excursions), and 35 minutes away from the world famous beach of Anse Lazio.
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Omarjee Aviation with Alitalia in Mauritius
Alitalia has been a boost for the Mauritius tourism industry and in now starting the second year of their operation linking Mauritius to Rome.
The Alitalia website presents Mauritius as follows:-
At the heart of the Indian Ocean an emerald archipelago awaits you: the Republic of Mauritius. In addition to the namesake main island, Mauritius, the archipelago comprises Rodrigues, second in size, Saint Brandon and Agalega. They all have something in common: beaches of blinding whiteness and a sea so blue to leave you breathless. The beauty of these islands fascinated Mark Twain, the American writer whom, after a stay in the archipelago, declared: "God created Mauritius first then Paradise”.
Not only Mauritius is the ideal destination for sea lovers, but will also satisfy hikers who cannot miss an excursion in the luxuriant vegetation up the 828 meters of the Piton de la Rivière Noire to have a bird's eye view of the coral reef surrounding the island. The capital, Port Louis, is certainly worth a visit for its colonial past and to enjoy the Creole cuisine characterized by the scents and colors of the spices of the island (curry, ginger, coriander) and influenced by the culinary traditions of India and China. And certainly you will not leave the island without tasting the lychees, maybe paired with a glass of rum, and without having purchased the gigantic vanilla pods.
Starting from 25 October 2018 with three weekly flights through Rome, you will be able to fly from Italy to Mauritius for the whole winter season aboard the comfortable and modern Airbus A330 with their three classes of service, each suited to every need.
Book your holiday now and discover this tropical paradise at the heart of the Indian Ocean.
Reunion Island - 25th October another volcano eruption
The Piton de la Fournaise of Reunion Island has erupted on the 25th October, after a (very) long seismic activity period of about 10h (since 4h local), lava came to the surface in the South Enclos area probably around 1000 m altitude.
In the Great Slopes, the lava moved quickly and was seen at 2.5 km from the National Road which was evacuated by the island's gendarmes in anticipation of a rapid progression of the flow towards it. The flow seemed to move on the eruption of 2007, which should be appreciated by everyone as the vegetation slows the flow of the lava.
Some photos taken around the Piton Tremblet, between 500 and 600 m altitude by Laurent Perrier.
Seychelles launches its first Nature Trail competition
In a press conference at Botanical House, Mont-Fleuri at the Seychelles Tourism Board (STB) headquarters today, the organisation announced the launch of the Seychelles Nature Trail competition to be held in May 2020.
The announcement was made by the STB Chief Executive Mrs. Sherin Francis in the presence of Mrs. Bernadette Willemin, STB Regional Director for Europe, Ms. Bernadette Honoré, the STB representative in Reunion – who initiated the project with the support of Christian Hamer and Veronique Victor (directors of the trail) - and various partners on-board to make the project a success in Seychelles next year.
The partners for the SNT project alongside the STB will include the Seychelles National Sports Council (NSC), the Seychelles National Park Authority (SNPA), Air Mauritius, Seychelles Breweries, ABSA ( Barclays Bank), Cable and Wireless and Skychef.
Launched in Reunion in September this year, this first edition of Seychelles Nature Trail (SNT) adds to the prestige of the destination as a multifaceted one.
The SNT aims at further promoting the archipelago's concept of green tourism as well as enticing potential visitors’ to the discovery of Seychelles' rich biodiversity.
The 25km trail which will be competed on Mahé on May 3, 2020 will be starting in the region of Port-Glaud round Anse Major, through the well-known hiking routes including the Mont Le Niol and Congo Rouge area finishing at Grand Anse.
The event plans on attracting and engaging nature sport enthusiast in the region and across the globe to Seychelles, as well as concept for Seychellois competitors.
Speaking at the event, Mrs. Sherin Francis mentioned her satisfaction to add another event to the destination’s profile on the international level.
“The SNT event projects the destinations towards an adventure that will open great doors for the destination, we have seen how big in publicity the recent trail event “Diagonale des Fous” which closed a few days ago to our fellow islanders in Reunion. We can only anticipate great participation from the region and hope that the beauty of our Islands will attract potential runners from all over the world,” said Mrs. Francis.
Mrs. Francis mentioned that in order to reach the anticipated number of participants for the event in 2020, an intensive communication campaign has been designed and will be implemented through traditional and social media.
In addition, a publicity campaign in collaboration with the Seychelles Public Transport Company (SPTC) will be activated in Seychelles in the coming weeks.
Source:- Seychelles Tourism Board
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Abu Dhabi Airports signs historic MoU with Beijing Daxing International Airport
BEIJING, 12th October, 2019 (WAM) -- A newly-signed agreement between Abu Dhabi Airports and Beijing Daxing International Airport, will see the two sides share best practices and collaborate to enhance their airport operations.
The Memorandum of Understanding, MoU, was inked at the BDIA Management Centre in Beijing, China on October 10th, in the presence of Sheikh Mohammad bin Hamad bin Tahnoon Al Nahyan, Chairman of Abu Dhabi Airports, by Bryan Thompson, Chief Executive Officer of Abu Dhabi Airports and Yao Yabo, President of Beijing Daxing International Airport, BDIA.
The signing of the MoU follows the opening of the Beijing Daxing International Airport last month, and ahead of the opening of the Midfield Terminal at Abu Dhabi International Airport. Both parties agreed to establish mechanisms for interactive contact and the exchange of knowledge and best practices, alongside sharing ideas on developing their airports and advancing the wider aviation industry for the benefit of passengers and visitors from around the world.
Speaking after the signing, Bryan Thompson commented, "This agreement is the result of the close social and economic ties between the UAE and China, and we look forward to working with our Chinese colleagues to enhance our partnership at all levels."
"The Chinese tourism and business market is important to the economy of Abu Dhabi and the wider UAE. Abu Dhabi is a popular destination for Chinese travelers, and tourist numbers are continuing to increase year on year," he added.
Also speaking at the signing, Yao Yabo said, "On September 25th of 2019, the Chinese President XI Jinping officially announced the opening of Beijing Daxing International Airport. We believe on the basis of long-term and win-win cooperation with Abu Dhabi Airport, the two sides will jointly make more contributions to China's civil aviation and world’s civil aviation."
25 artists exhibit work at International Conference Centre during fifth anniversary of Seychelles Arts
More than 25 artists in Seychelles came together to exhibit their work to celebrate the fifth anniversary of ‘Noular Sesel’ (Seychelles Arts) in an exhibition that opened last week.
Coinciding with and kicking off the Creole Festival, the exhibition at the International Conference Centre is showcasing over 30 pieces from artists such as Nigel Henri, Allen Comettant, Frances Chang-Him, Leon Radegonde and Martin Kennedy. Some of the exhibit pieces are available for sale.
The brainchild of Colbert Nourrice, ‘Noular Sesel’, is a local art agency that helps all Seychellois artists practising different art forms, to seek marketing and sales opportunities for their work locally and internationally. It was launched in October 2014.
“During the past five years ‘Noular Sesel’ has not organised any major exhibition. I felt that it was important to put together an exhibition that would bring together artists dong different art forms,” said Nourrice, who is a visual arts artist, specialising in painting with acrylic on canvas.
Nourrice explained that during the past five years, he is satisfied with the fact that he was able to bring together different artists who now have established confidence in the work that the agency does.
The launch of the exhibition, which will be opened until October 30, included poem recitals and live music performance. Nourrice said he also wanted to integrate Creole books and the works of local singers into the exhibition.
“I like the balance that there was in the opening of the exhibition -- a little bit of poetry to start the opening, then we went to the exhibition and which was followed by music to entertain the crowd,” said Doris Nourrice, who attended the launch.
She added that it would have been “better if it had been done on a bigger scale where the member of the public could have come on the same platform and appreciate the work on the same day the opening was done.”
Another invitee present at the opening, Mathilde Crochet, said: “The exhibition is quite interesting as it showcases a panorama of artwork from artists here in Seychelles.”
“There are different styles and inspirations within the exhibition. I find it as a good initiative that Colbert Nourrice is celebrating the first five years of the existence of ‘Noular Sesel’ and it is in a way setting the wheels of the agency into motion again,” said Crochet.
“The past five years represents the foundation of the agency. We expect to see other artists, especially the younger ones, to come and give a helping hand to ‘Noular Sesel’. It would be great to have a management team as well, as for now, I am the one doing everything,” said the organiser.
Talking about the future of ‘Noular Sesel’, Colbert Nourrice said that they are currently creating a website where artists will be able to sell their work online. He hopes that with the launch of the website, artists will also get international exposure, eventually creating the path for regional and international exhibitions.
Source:- Seychelles News Agency
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Seychelles Sustainable Tourism Foundation to collaborate on projects under Pristine Seychelles campaign
"We’re excited for this collaboration which will help create jobs for locals, give value to the Creole Culture, encourage efficient use of natural resources, reduce waste generation, and foster awareness" was the message echoed at the signing ceremony. This will include specific initiatives like a clean-up of Victoria and launching the Hidden Histories of Victoria Map. The agreement also aims to work towards the GSTC destination certification for Seychelles until 2022.
Zanzibar welcomes first ever commercial B747 flight
Zanzibar is now receiving a weekly flight from Moscow throughout the European winter season, operated with a Boeing B747 of Russiya Airlines.
Biblio Globus, a leading Russian tour operator, is chartering the flight to bring Russian tourists, wishing to escape the winter cold, to the sunny beaches of Zanzibar.
On the inaugural flight were over 500 passengers and after receiving the traditional water cannon salute was it all hands on deck for immigration and customs but also for baggage handling services to process this unprecedented number of visitors arriving at once.
The flight was officially welcomed by a delegation comprising Zanzibar government officials – led by the Minister of State in the President’s Office Hon. ISSA Haji Ussi and Hon. Mahmoud Thabit Kombo, the Minister responsible for Information, Tourism and Heritage – and Russian embassy officials and leading tourism stakeholders from Zanzibar.
It is estimated that this operation, due to take place year round, could bring as many as 25.000 Russian tourists to the ‘Spice Island‘.
Said Javed Jafferji on his social media pages: ‘The arrival of this Russian Flight is a testimony of Zanzibar’s government focus on raising the Tourism Standards of Zanzibar globally, as a major contributor to the economy of Zanzibar which has surpassed all the set targets in the Tourism sector. With this weekly flight of 525, it’s expected to reach 25,000 Tourist a year directly from Russia and economy of 15bn into the Zanzibar economy Today marked the inaugural flight of Russian airlines, celebrating the first charter flight from Moscow which landed in Zanzibar‘.
Source:- ATC News (Aviation, Travel & Conservation News from Eastern Africa & the Indian Ocean islands)
Ethiopian to Resume Flight to Athens
Filled with incredible historical sites, Athens is one of the oldest cities in the world and Europe’s historical capital where democracy was invented.
The thrice weekly flight to Athens will be operated by the ultra-modern B787 Dreamliner per the below schedule
With the inclusion of Athens, Ethiopian Airlines’ international network reaches 126.ADVERT:- Dar & Douce Self Catering - Seychelles
High net-worth investors driving hospitality sector in Francophone Africa (Seychelles & Mauritius in list)
Francophone Africa’s burgeoning hospitality market continues to be a critical opportunity for “global hospitality brands and investors,” says the host of the second annual bilingual FrancoReal Property Investment Forum, Kfir Rusin.
Taking place in Abidjan on 29 & 30 October 2019, the Summit is hosted by the continent’s leading pan-African real estate networking and conferencing company, African Property Investment (API) Events.
According to regional hospitality analysts and advisor, Clemence Derycke of Horwath HTL, Francophone Africa’s hospitality sector is attractive to a broad spectrum of High Net-Worth Individuals (HNWIs), Private Equity, Institutional, French and Anglophone African Investors due to the lack of branded supply, and its stable CFA currency and strong demand drivers.
“Proparco has invested in Azalaï hotel and Teyliom (Mangalis Hotel Group), and at the same time, Grit Real Income Group has just acquired the Club Med Cap Skirring property in Senegal,” says Derycke.
According to Derycycke, the market is very active with global and regional brands “targeting hotel openings in the majority of the region’s major cities.”
“Accor has been very active in Francophone Africa. It has more hotels and its pipeline remains robust, while the Radisson Hotel Group (RHG) has recently been very dynamic with opening flagship hotels in most capital cities. They are now looking for new development in the resort or the midscale segments,” says Derycyke.
While these brands are currently leading development in the region, other international brands, including the Marriott and the Sheraton Four points are also expanding into what is Africa’s hottest hospitality market.
According to RHG Development Director for Francophone and Lusophone Africa, Erwan Garnier, the region is a primary focus for the group with the international brand aiming to add significantly to its portfolio over the next five years.
As one of the Francoreal’s Forum’s numerous international and returning industry speakers, the two-day conference is “a great networking opportunity” he says.
As Garnier adds, “We currently have 16 hotels and over 3, 000 rooms in operation and a further 13 hotels and almost 2,000 rooms under development in Francophone Africa.”
To fuel its growth strategy, the group has created a specialized French-speaking development team which can align to the group’s Africa development strategy of focusing on capital cities, financial hubs and resort destinations.
Being fluent in the language and local market dynamics, helps the Radisson Hotel Group to be focused and “competitive in the market,” says Garnier.
“We have identified seven pro-active cities in which we are focusing our efforts for scaled expansion. The two primary focus cities are Abidjan and Dakar, followed by Douala, Yaoundé, Kinshasa, Mauritius and Seychelles,” he says.
Adding that the group has opened two new hotels in Algeria and Niger, with the group employing a development strategy that is focused on the business segment for hotels, resorts, serviced apartments and mixed-use developments.
The Radisson Blu Hotel & Conference Center Niamey, Niger is the first five-star hotel to be built in the country and ‘made development history, for good measure”, says Garnier.
“The hotel was the first five-star hotel to be completed from design to construction in 11 months,” says Garnier.
With two more hotels set to open in 2019, including a second hotel in Morocco (Casablanca), the market provides value for the hospitality group, and is very attractive for real estate investors, particularly “High Net-worth Individuals (HNWIS) investors,” many of whom are the biggest sources of current investment, says Garnier.
For Rusin, the value of the conference is to highlight the opportunities for investors in one of Africa’s most exciting markets across the ecosystem. “Hotels provide significant opportunities for global brands and investors, but beyond this sector, we look forward to exploring opportunities in retail, logistics, housing and more.”
Source:- eTN BUZZ.TRAVEL
12 Fascinating Things To Know About Seychelles according to CULTURE TRIP
When settlers first arrived, one of the biggest problems they faced was an abundance of saltwater crocodiles. It’s thought they became extinct by around 1819, although there are still are reported sightings of them from time to time.
It is thought that the treasure of the French Pirate Olivier Levasseur, known as La Buse (the buzzard) is hidden on Mahe island. With a cryptograph from La Buse himself, pirate markings made in rock and even small amounts of treasure already being uncovered, there is more than just folklore surrounding this tale. One man on Mahe island has made it his life’s work to find it.
There are also several stories of other treasure being hidden around the islands too, including in Moyenne, but the story of the La Buse Treasure has more evidence than any others.
Okay, so maybe this is more a myth then a fact, but it’s a widely held belief that the tiny island of Moyenne is haunted. The most popular story is that there is a ghost there that is protecting buried treasure. But the British man who bought the island for just £10,000 in the 1960s told tales of many more ghosts inhabiting the island.
For over 100 years, from 1829 to 1965, Curieuse island functioned as a leper colony. The ruins of its history can still be seen today and the former doctor’s house has been preserved as a museum.
There are two UNESCO World Heritage Sites
There are only 206 ‘natural’ UNESCO World Heritage Sites and Seychelles is home to two of them. The Vallée de Mai Nature Reserve and Aldabra Atoll (the world’s second largest coral atoll), both listed for their outstanding natural beauty. They are home to several endemic and endangered species, such as the giant tortoises. Both shouldn’t be missed on a trip to Seychelles.
The Seychelles was uninhabited until around 1770 when French settlers began to arrive with their African slaves. Before that, pirates had used the islands as bases and stopover points. Today, Seychellois are referred to as having a ‘melting pot’ of cultures, ranging from all over the world particularly Europe, Africa, and India.
Seychelles Is Over 99% water
The exclusive economic zone of the Seychelles is 1,374,000km2; of that, only 459km2 is landmass across all 115 islands, making it only 0.03% land. Most of the islands are uninhabited with 90% of the population living on Mahe island. The next two most populated islands are Praslin and La Digue.
The clocktower in Victoria is often described as a little ‘Big Ben’. However, it’s actually a replica of another Big Ben replica in Westminster, London. It was brought here in 1903 to mark the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Victoria – at that time, the Seychelles was a British colony.
Yes, really! While it is not as widely eaten as it once was, thanks to the wider availability of other meat, fruitbat is still eaten today as a traditional dish. If you want to discover where to find it and how to eat it, read our article on how to eat bat
Since its independence from Britain in 1976, there have been three different flags. It wasn’t until 1996 that the current national flag has been used. Each of the colours have different meanings: the blue symbolises the sky and the ocean; the yellow for the sun; the red for the people and their determination to move forward; the white for social justice and harmony, and the green for the land and natural environment.
The general election in 2016 saw ‘Parti Lepep’ (the People’s Party) win, but without a majority. Parti Lepep has ruled since the coup d’état in 1977, and it won a majority in every election since. The leader, James Michel ran, controversially, but once victory was secured, he handed over to his vice president Danny Faure. He has also stated that he will not be running for leadership of the party for the next election, leading to speculation that he will create his own political party.
The biggest nut in the world
Esmeralda, who is actually male, is the world’s largest tortoise at almost 300kg. He is an Aldabra Giant Tortoise, indigenous to Seychelles. At 170 years old, he is also thought to be the second oldest tortoise in the world. If you want to meet him, he lives on Bird Island, a private island with an eco-friendly resort, Bird Island Lodge.
We hope you have enjoyed this Issue #32 of Volume 3 of 2019. For those who missed previous Issues, you may find them on the links listed at the bottom of this newsletter for your convenience. We continue to republish on Linkedln, WhatsApp and Twitter links to International Newswires that have re-posted our previous Issues - they are real friends; support them and work with them. SAINT ANGE CONSULTANCY
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The Saint Ange Tourism Report is a weekly publication that touches on tourism in Seychelles, the greater Indian Ocean Vanilla Islands and the surrounding Indian Ocean Countries as well as global tourism matters as and when necessary.
The Report goes to a large number of Seychellois locally and also those residing in the four corners of the world, the Business Community in Seychelles, Tour Operators and the Tourism Travel Trade, Airlines and is being reposted by several friendly and important newswires which will ensure a very wide global distribution.
Alain St.Ange is remembered right across the world as the successful and dynamic Tourism Minister of the Seychelles who aspired to fly the Seychelles Flag at the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) if the island’s bid for the position of Secretary General had not been abruptly withdrawn as Africa shot itself in the foot yet again.
Alain St Ange has been working in the tourism business all his working life and in Government services since 2009. He was appointed as the Director of Marketing for Seychelles by President and the island's then Minister of Tourism James Michel. After one year of service, he was promoted to the position of CEO of the Seychelles Tourism Board.
In 2012 the Indian Ocean Vanilla Islands Regional Organization was formed and St Ange was elected as the First President of that Regional Organisation (Indian Ocean Vanilla Islands - Seychelles, Mauritius, Reunion, Madagascar, Comoros and Mayotte) and he remains the only one who was elected to serve a second back-to-back mandate.
Tourism was and remains St.Ange’s life and passion and he steered that industry with style and utmost devotion. It is in the 2012 Seychelles Cabinet of Ministers re-shuffle, that St Ange was appointed as Minister of Tourism and Culture and appointed by President Danny Faure in 2016 as Minister of Tourism. Civil Aviation, Ports & Marine which he resigned on 28 December 2016 in order to pursue a candidacy as Secretary General of the World Tourism Organisation. When his candidature or document of endorsement was withdrawn by his country just a day before the elections in Madrid, Alain St.Ange showed his greatness as a speaker when he addressed the UNWTO gathering with grace, passion, and style. His moving speech was recorded as the one on the best marking speeches at this UN international body. African countries often remember his Uganda address for the East Africa Tourism Platform when he was a guest of honour. As former Tourism Minister, St.Ange was a regular and popular speaker and was often seen addressing forums and conferences on behalf of his country. His ability to speak ‘off the cuff’ was always seen as a rare ability. He often said he speaks from the heart. In Seychelles he is remembered for a marking address at the official opening of the island’s Carnaval International de Victoria when he reiterated the words of John Lennon famous song… ” you may say I am a dreamer, but I am not the only one. One day you will all join us and the world will be better as one”. The world press contingent gathered in Seychelles on the day ran with the words by St.Ange which made headlines everywhere. St.Ange delivered the keynote address for the “Tourism & Business Conference in Canada” as he did across Africa, Europe and Asia. Seychelles is a good example for sustainable tourism. This is therefore not surprising to see Alain St.Ange being sought after as a speaker on the international circuit.
He pushed for ‘tourism for all’ as he campaigned for the Secretary General position of the UNWTO and in his home island he pushed for the islanders to ‘claim back their industry’ as he welcomed hundreds of small establishments in the island’s Accommodation Network.
In the years when Alain St.Ange was Minister of Tourism of the Seychelles, the islands were recording 10% -12% growth in visitor arrival numbers month on month, and this even without enough air carriers adequately providing for adequate inbound seats.
His appointment in the role of Minister was largely due to the Seychelles private sector business trade who pushed for him to take over the island’s marketing (2008). They then continued to pressure for one of their own to be appointed as CEO of the Seychelles Tourism Board (2009). It is the Seychelles private sector trade who saw the successes by St.Ange and pressured then President James Michel to put someone from the business sector in the post of Minister of Tourism to put that Ministry back on track.
The late Louis D’Offay, the President of the Seychelles Hospitality and Tourism Association (SHTA) back then went on record to confirm their Association’s success in having one of their own in the office of Minister.
A speaker on tourism matters who continues to be sought after on the international circuit as one reputed to know his subject matter well. He is followed and admired because he continues to speak off the cuff with no written text and this impresses always. At the UNWTO General Assembly in Chengdu in China, a person who was being sought after for the “Speakers Circuit” for tourism and sustainable development was Alain St.Ange.
Alain St.Ange is now officially back in the political arena of his Seychelles Islands with the launching of his “One Seychelles” political party. He is a Seychellois islander he says happily, and guarantees he will work to put the people of the islands first in every decision taken by the islands. He has been a Member of the Seychelles Parliament in the second and also in the third Republic of the Seychelles. He successfully won the La Digue Constituency (1979), the electoral seat held by his late father Karl St.Ange in the years before the 1976 Independence of Seychelles from Great Britain and then won the Bel Air Constituency (2002) taking the President’s own residential district away from the ruling party against all odds.
When Alain St.Ange became the Seychelles Minister of Tourism and Culture (2012) it was the era when Seychelles went beyond political party lines to appoint two of its Ministers in their field of expertise, Alain St.Ange for Tourism and World Bank man Pierre Laporte for Finance. This was followed by his appointment as the Seychelles Minister of Tourism, Civil Aviation, Ports & Marine in 2016.
Alain St.Ange is a Tourism Consultant heading the “Saint Ange Consultancy” and is responsible for the widely distributed weekly “Saint Ange Tourism Report”.
Alain St.Ange sat on the Board of the UNWTO and is also the founding President of the Seychelles Labor Union (SLU), President of the African Tourism Board (ATB), Deputy Secretary General of FORSEAA (Forum of Small Medium Economic AFRICA ASEAN) based in Jakarta Indonesia, listed as a Consultant for TMN (Travel Marketing Network) in New York USA, Co-Chair of the SUNx (Strong Universal Network) Organisation in London UK, Vice President & Founding Member of ICTP (International Coalition of Tourism Partners), Member Advisory Board of the non-profit organisation “Helping Needy Welfare Society of India”. Alain St.Ange represented eTN Newswire in the Indian Ocean and had his own eTN column (St. Ange Indian Ocean report) for many years until he became a Minister in the Seychelles Government. He is also the Chairman of Trustees of the Arab Tourism News Portal – Al-Masala- Official Tourism Travel Portal News At Middle East
Alain St.Ange has been interviewed by some of the biggest television channels and continues to be called by International Press as a source of reference. Anita Mendiratta of the CNN Task Group published on the 11 April 2014: Travel & Tourism leaders close-up, this time a Minister of Tourism and it was Alain St.Ange used for her example. She wrote that Seychelles as an island nation in the Indian Ocean neighbouring Africa’s eastern coastline, while small in geographic size and remotely located, the Seychelles has become a destination (through St.Ange) with a reputation for ‘punching above its weight’. He was on ‘Quest means Business’ with Richard Quest of CNN and Alan Boulton on Sky News during his UNWTO Campaign. He is not shy with a ‘gift of the gab’ making his an easy personality for live interviews.
St.Ange has received numerous awards and honours, including the Mahatma Gandhi Honour Award (2014) for his work in strengthening Indo-Seychelles relations, a Plaque of Honour from the House of Lords in London (2015), the Tourism Eminent Achiever Award in Africa (2015) and most recently the Change Maker in Tourism by IIPT (International Institute for Peace through Tourism) at the Tourism Resilience Summit in Johannesburg South Africa (2019). At the AKWAABA 2019 Festival and Conference in Lagos Nigeria he made it to the 'Africa Travel 100 Global Tourism Personalities' list.
He has also authored and co-authored several books about Seychelles, including:
Seychelles, What Next? (1991); Seychelles, In Search of Democracy (2005); Seychelles, The Cry of a People (2007); Seychelles, Regatta 2010 (2010); Seychelles, Enters The World of Canival (2011); Seychelles, Remembers Karl St.Ange (2011); Seychelles, The Coco-de-Mer (2012); Seychelles, Festival of the Sea (2012); Seychelles, State House (2013) and Seychelles: Unexpected Treasures (2014).
Alain St.Ange is the former Seychelles Minister of Tourism, Civil Aviation, Ports & Marine and before that the island's Minister for Tourism and Culture. He was First President of the Indian Ocean Vanilla Islands and was also the former Seychelles Candidate for the position of Secretary-General of the UNWTO. He is today the Deputy Secretary General of FORSEAA (Forum of Small Medium Economic AFRICA ASEAN) based in Jakarta Indonesia, listed as a Consultant for TMN (Travel Marketing Network) in New York USA, Co-Chair of the SUNx (Strong Universal Network) Organisation in London UK, Vice President & Founding Member of ICTP (International Coalition of Tourism Partners), Member Advisory Board of the non-profit organisation "Helping Needy Welfare Society of India", Appointed on the Steering Committee of the "African Tourism Board" Association.
Married to Ginette Michel of Les Mamelles, Mahé and has two daughters, Christine and Michelle.
by Alain St. Ange