Minister Furbert and Miss Bermuda Rochelle Minors *Photo supplied
Minister Furbert and Miss Bermuda Rochelle Minors *Photo supplied

TUESDAY, NOV. 6: The Bermuda Department of Tourism (BDOT) is well under way with what is already proving to be another productive and rewarding attendance at the leading global event for the travel industry, World Travel Market (WTM), this year.

With over 45,000 travel industry professionals and over 2,500 media in attendance last year and numbers rumoured to be up for 2012, WTM is a crucial industry event, providing valuable opportunities to connect with suppliers, press and generate new business opportunities.

The Minister of Business Development and Tourism for Bermuda, the Hon Wayne L. Furbert, together with the BDOT team, are working (and networking) hard to ensure that Bermuda’s messages are successfully promoted to all key audiences. The new ‘so much more’ branding is creating a buzz among trade and media, with over 40 appointments with major suppliers and important press contacts scheduled on stand throughout the show.

Stand sharers, Grotto Bay, Fairmont Hotels, Elbow Beach, Cambridge Beaches, BDOT Italy and BDOT Germany, are also raising awareness of all things Bermuda through a further 40 meetings with key industry figures to take place over the four-day b2b event.

Minister Furbert is further endorsing and raising the profile of the destination through a number of interviews with key consumer and trade media, including an interview for the world’s leading travel network, The Travel Channel US, available in nearly 96 million US cable homes.

The culture, colour, warmth and beauty of Bermuda is being further demonstrated at the event with the attendance of the vibrant Bermudian Gombey dancers and the stunning Miss Bermuda, Sandys Rochelle Minors.

The UK travel trade is receiving the new Bermuda brand with enthusiasm and continues to show fervent support for increasing sales for the destination.

WTM also provides an opportunity to BDOT to recognize and reward the hard work of key industry partners in the UK. More than 70 guests at last night’s Bermuda Appreciation Dinner enjoyed a glitzy evening at the Altitude 360 restaurant in Milbank, boasting stunning views over London and providing a highly privileged position from which to enjoy the fireworks displays across the capital celebrating Bonfire Night.

Hosted by Minister Wayne Furbert, guests were also treated to a surprise VIP appearance from none other than Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, who graced the venue with her presence to present the BDOT annual trade partnership awards.

The entrance of the royal lookalike triggered short gasps of disbelief, before waves of giggles and applause spread through the room. Together with the Minister, the Queen presented three coveted awards: Classic Collection took away the Outstanding Partner of the Year award; Saga Holidays collected the award for Special recognition; and British Airways swooped the BDOT Excellence in Partnership award. All winners duly curtseyed or bowed when greeting ‘Her Majesty’.

Minister Furbert is confident that the remainder of the travel fair will be a successful show.