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Director Pennicook (sixth left) with the lucky winners. 
New York State Senator Leroy Comrie (left) poses with Director of Tourism Paul Pennicook during the Diaspora Appreciation Reception.
Jamaica's consul general, Herman G. LaMont (second right), and Alfred McDonald (right), senior director, commercial development and planning, Norman Manley International Airport, share the lens with Suzette Rochester, Florida manager, Victoria Mutual Building Society, and Andrew Lawrence, president/director of the Caribbean Trade Council Inc in Hartford, Connecticut, United States. - Photo by Kwabena Brown

Jamaica fêtes diaspora at special appreciation reception

As a thank you to the diaspora community, the Jamaica Tourist Board and the Norman Manley International Airport recently hosted a special reception in their honour in midtown Manhattan. The hosts thanked them for being integral to the success of tourism in Jamaica's capital city, Kingston. A wide cross section of persons from this key target group - comprising members of alumni associations, businesses, clergy, community groups, not-for-profit organisations, and unions - attended the invitation-only event.

Jamaica's director of tourism, Paul Pennicook, in his remarks reiterated the importance of the diaspora to the island's tourism.

"You're our ambassadors and we thank you for your ongoing support over the years. We are happy to report that overall arrivals for the winter, that is, January through April 2015, are up five per cent," noted Pennicook.

The tourism director also advised the audience that 25 per cent of visitor traffic to Jamaica arrives in Kingston. He further noted that persons visiting the North Coast can now choose to arrive through the Norman Manley International Airport.

"Some of you may not know, but one-third of the north-south link of the highway is now completed. This has already chopped 25 minutes off the Kingston-to-Ocho Rios journey because persons are now able to bypass Mount Rosser. Additionally, the rest of that highway should be completed by the first quarter of 2016, and it is estimated that it will make the journey from Kingston to Ocho Rios less than an hour," emphasised Pennicook.

Among the government officials in attendance at the special reception were Ambassador Courtenay Rattray, Jamaica's permanent representative to the United Nations; Herman G. LaMont, Jamaica's consul general; and New York State Senator Leroy Comrie.

The reception comprised airline and hotel giveaways throughout the evening, along with live entertainment. Refreshments were supplied by Caribbean Food Delights, Country Kitchen, Golden Krust Caribbean Bakery & Grill, The Door Restaurant, Tower Isles, and Grace Foods. Participating airline partners included Caribbean Airlines, Delta, Fly Jamaica and JetBlue, who all donated tickets for giveaways.

Hotel sponsors included the Altamont Court, The Jamaica Pegasus, The Knutsford Court and Spanish Court hotels, which all donated weekend stays. VIP Attractions also donated lounge passes. Other partners include the Consulate General, Victoria Mutual Building Society and VP Records.

For more information about travel to Jamaica, please go to www.visitjamaica.com

 

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