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Seychelles Small Hotels Association Hold Successful Visibility Drive

Seychelles Small Hotels Association Hold Successful Visibility Drive - TRAVELINDEXMahé, Victoria, Seychelles, April 29, 2024 / TRAVELINDEX / SSHEA, the “Seychelles Small Hotels & Establishments Association”, the official Association of the Seychelles hospitality establishments of below 25 rooms, held its first big gathering and gala dinner on Friday 12th April at the Berjaya Beau Vallon Bay Resort & Casino. The Association is said to be preparing for a dignified representation of its members in Tourism Road Shows and International Tourism Trade Fairs to ensure greater visibility and consequently, better promote their establishments in the main Seychelles main tourism source markets.

The highlights of the event were the launch of the gathering by guest of Honor, Minister Sylvestre Radegonde, the Seychelles Minister for Foreign Affairs and Tourism. This was followed by an enlightening discourse by the world-renowned speaker, the former Seychelles Minister of Tourism, Alain St.Ange, on the ‘Unique Selling Points’ (USPs) of Seychelles, especially its small Seychellois-owned and managed establishments and the unveiling of the SSHEA very ‘first cut’ of its promotional video that opened with a Seychelles sunrise and the distinct crowing of a very energetic cockerel. It went on for just over 4 minutes with pictures of what the authentic Seychellois kreol culture and sceneries have to offer. The clip ends with a Moutia around a fire on the beach.

Present were members of the Diplomatic Corps, high-level representatives from diverse corporate organizations, proprietors of small tourism establishment and SSHEA members from Mahe, Praslin and La Digue. Mr. Peter Sinon, Founding Chairperson of SSHEA, very ably acted as the MC for the evening.

In his official launching of the event, Minister Sylvestre Radegonde commended SSHEA, an association that is barely 8 months old, for having gone the extra mile in such a short time to be able to bring together over 250 guests at Berjaya Beau Vallon Bay for such an event. He pledged his continued commitment and support to the Seychelles small establishments that he makes a point to visit every Friday, when he is in the country. So far he has visited over 350 Small Hotels and Establishments. He laid emphasis on the need for all tourism stakeholders to work together to keep the destination attractive and pristine by practicing sustainable tourism. He sternly warned against practices that may kill the goose that lays the golden egg and urged caution by all stakeholders.

Mr. Alain St.Ange, the Seychelles former Minister of Tourism, Civil Aviation, Ports & Marine started his talk by immediately dispelling the perceived dichotomy and rivalry between the big & small hotels. He said that the tourism industry relies on all its stakeholders, and it is necessary that the islands all need to pull in the same direction and work as a coordinated team. “It may be true that there are specificities amongst groups and levels of services on offer, but there is no doubt that we must all do our respective parts to the best of our respective abilities to encourage visitors to return or to positively recommend Seychelles in their respective reviews and word of mouth” said former Minister St.Ange.

Mr. St Ange pointed to the ‘proof in the pudding’ before our very eyes, This is through the partnership between SSHEA and Berjaya Beau Vallon Bay Resort & Casino that falls in the larger hotels category. “Yet, there has been room for cooperation and collaboration” former Minister St.Ange said. He went on to state that when he looks around he sees sizeable corporations such as Seybrew, ISPC, Takamaka Rum distillery, the Banks, Eboo and others who have either sponsored the event and/or paid for their tables of 10 guests or more and this inclusive of the two largest Seychellois owned and managed DMCs being Mr Joe Albert of Creole Holidays and Mr Alan Mason of Mason’s Travel who personally responded positively to a sponsorship request from SSHEA. They are the two that inspired many Seychellois to join the industry since they both started from humble beginnings to be what and where they are today being our pillars and pride of our tourism industry.

Former Minister St.Ange pointed out that each and every guest is part of Seychelles unique selling points – ensuring that the visitor to Seychelles has a memorable experience that will either bring him or her back or recommend with some insistence for family and friends to follow in their footsteps to come and experience Seychelles.

From the time they walked in the Berjaya Beau Vallon Bay Resort & Casino lobby, guests were treated as special celebrities. They were invited to have their pictures taken by a professional photographer. They were then welcomed to enjoy a selection of 3 Takamaka Rum cocktails or mock tails, whilst listening to popular tunes by Ms Sandra Esparon. The event had all the ingredients for a successful if not excellent venue for good food, drinks, music, dancing and networking that ended happily after almost four hours of drinking and dancing.