Famous To BTA: “Can’t Have Cake & Eat It Too”

July 16, 2015

[Opinion column written by Chris Famous]

Dear Mr. Bill Hanbury head of the Bermuda Tourism Authority [BTA]:

“You can’t have your cake and eat it too.”

How many of us have heard that from our parents and or elders? I suspect just about all of us.

On January 7, 2015, as the head of the BTA you proclaimed that Bermuda will be marketed as an Atlantic destination, and not as a Caribbean destination. Separate in the sense that we have to clearly define to the tourist market that we are not geographically in the Caribbean.

Well, a few things stand out as contradictory to this desire.

Mulligans?

On January 24, 2015, Fairmont Hamilton Princess made this posting on Facebook:

“Business Insider declares beautiful Bermuda as the best Caribbean island for golfers!”

fhp

So, here we have one of our main hotels latching onto a claim that we are the best Caribbean island for golfers. Did you forget to give them the memo that “Bermuda is not in the Caribbean” and that we should be sure to remind savvy business travelers each day that we are not in the Caribbean?

Pass the Coppertone.

On February 2, 2015, local tourism enthusiast and concert promoter Tony Brannon took a fair bit of time to post on many persons Facebook page, including mine, that we must do an online vote to ensure that Horseshoe beach was voted as the top beach in—drum roll, please—the Caribbean!

“BERMUDA and ALL my friends….. You have until 12 noon tomorrow to vote for Horseshoe Bay as the Best Beach – Your vote may help Bermuda beat Barbados!”

brannon

He encouraged Bermudians to vote multiple times to ensure that we outvoted Barbadians.

Well, now, how’s that for irony? He wants Bermudians to out vote Barbadians to prove our beach, which is not in the Caribbean, is the best beach in the Caribbean, over a beach that is actually in the Caribbean.

Technically, this could be considered fraud. Again, Mr. Hanbury you probably need to give Tony Brannon the memo: “Bermuda is not in the Caribbean.”

Tea or Tempo?

BAM 2

“Consumers are interested in Bermuda’s British traditions: tea time, cricket, focus on service.” – Bill Hanbury

The BTA wants us to be more British. Well, Mr. Hanbury, the majority of Bermudians do not drink tea like the British and the majority of us do not eat fish and chips wrapped in newspapers. However, the majority of Bermudians of every ethnicity have grown up following Reggae and Soca.

The majority of Bermudians have been to the Caribbean for Sunsplash in Jamaica, Test Match in Antigua, cruises to every Caribbean island, and Trinidad for Carnival every February. There are more Jamaican restaurants than British restaurants.

Clearly you can take us out of the Caribbean. But you cannot take the Caribbean out of us.

BAM

We are Caribbean.

You cannot on one hand tells us we are not in the Caribbean, then on the other hand have prominent persons in the Tourism industry brag about us having the best beaches or golf courses in the Caribbean. Quite simply, you cannot have your cake and eat it, too.

On the flip side, I do love those videos you guys have been putting out using authentic Bermudians.

Cheers Guv.

- Chris Famous can be contacted via email at Carib_pro@yahoo.com or Twitter at @ryderz777

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Comments (27)

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  1. Ed says:

    Why would anyone not want to eat their cake?

    • Toodle-oo says:

      He makes a literary mistake that is so common now it has become rampant and accepted as ‘correct’.

      Anyone can have their cake and eat it ! You make a cake , or someone gives you a cake and boom , you have your cake. What do you do next ? Eat it !

      So we can all have out cake and eat it .

      What you can’t do is eat you cake and still have it .
      One doesn’t even need to think about it for ten seconds to realize that it’s not ‘You can’t have your cake and eat it too’ because we can and do.

      It is however impossible to eat your cake and still have it.

  2. BTCHECKER says:

    Sheesh Chris – its called targeting a market. The focus is on the fact we are an Atlantic destination to differentiate ourselves from others.

    This does not mean we ignore that we are a semi-tropical country with some locals who have strong Caribbean roots who sometimes go to the Caribbean. Nor that we are sometimes lumped into the Caribbean for awards. You absolutely can have your cake and eat it to – its called being a smart.

    He is not a politician he is hired to increase tourism.

    Seriously – what is the point of your article? Are you saying that the current tourism strategy of calling ourselves an Atlantic destination is a conspiracy to gentrify Bermudians with Caribbean routes? get over yourself. If anything your reference the fact that the majority of Bermudian don’t drink tea and eat fish and chips is you trying to erase the fact that the original settlers here were British and we are still a British colony. But of course that would be wrong and xenophobic right?

    get better

    • inna says:

      I can point Famous to numerous Belco poles that need fixing!!!

      • Triangle Drifter says:

        Does he actually WORK at BELCO? When does he have time for work?

    • wtf says:

      Wtf

  3. hmmm says:

    We are in with Caribbean countries for many trade and vacation industry groups and publications, but not actually in the Caribbean geographically.

    We could have them not include us in any region and be left on our own I suppose. Is that what you want Famous, for us to be missing from access points, industry groups and lose exposure.

    Do you hate Bermuda Famous, you must really hate her as you beat up on her and her people so much in the press?

  4. Jeremy Deacon says:

    So your ideas to help tourism are ……? Easy to sit back and bash someone, harder to be actually doing something ….

  5. BigCHOON says:

    I don’t think Tony Brannon put Bermuda on that Top 10 list. That was the top ten list makers. He was merely supporting Bermuda take a chill pill lol.

  6. inna says:

    What??

  7. Next says:

    Chris,

    You are running out of things to moan about. Be more selective please.

  8. Huh says:

    How small minded. Titanic is sinking & Famous wants to debate how to arrange deck chairs…

  9. Don't Cloud the Issue says:

    We are not the Caribbean. Why would you attempt to argue that we are? If what you’re talking about is tourism, we couldn’t be more different from the Caribbean. You’re confusing different topics here.

    The Caribbean has a tourist season which is opposite to that of Bermuda. Where we see our peak in the middle of summer, the Caribbean sees theirs in the height of winter. We couldn’t be more different.

    If we’re going to promote tourism in Bermuda and be successful at it, we better do as Mr. Hanbury says and ensure that visitors understand that Bermuda is not a beach destination in January, unlike all of the Caribbean, Mr. Famous. Your arguing that we are, doesn’t really help.

    Regarding the comparison made between beaches and golf? Great! Let’s continue to show that we’re better than all of those other places. Tony B. was right to push that message and good on him for getting Bermudians rallied around their island. I believe Mr. Hanbury has done the same thing. We have always been, we are, and we will always be, better! And not only when it comes to golf and beaches, we’re better at so many more things. No island in the Caribbean comes close to Bermudians when it comes to hospitality. Or would you care to argue differently?

    It’s a shame that you continue to try to peg ourselves to the islands in the Caribbean. I say, let’s continue to be proud of our island, let’s work together to build tourism, and if we can continue to show that it’s better in Bermuda, then by all means – Do It! Even better, let’s show that we are different, and not just better, but we’re the best.

    It would be great to see a piece from you, on what makes you proud of Bermuda, and why you believe travelers should choose to come to Bermuda on vacation, without any reference to the Caribbean, or an attack on another person’s efforts. What say you Mr. Famous? What will be your contribution to promoting tourism in Bermuda?

  10. PBanks says:

    Clever and witty piece. Caribbean when convenient?

  11. Note the irony here. Mr. Chris Famous article and means to contacted him: “Chris Famous can be contacted via email at Carib_pro@yahoo.com or Twitter at @ryderz777″
    Why Carib and not Berm.? Chris?

  12. BDAGIRL says:

    Chris Famous, have you ever had chats with Overseas Travel Agents to see what tourist would like to see in Bermuda. It certainly is not what some of the Caribbean Islands offer. Such as Soca Parties etc. Yes they do want to see the little tea rooms, cricket and the British flavor. Its not what the Bermudians want it is all about what the Tourist want. Mr. Hanbury I am sure was not consulted on the Fairmount Hamilton Princess and Mr. Tony Brannons ads. That is beyond his control. So little bit of advice contact a few overseas Travel Agents and see what makes us different from the Carribean.

  13. TonyC says:

    That article is so off-target as to be laughable. Epic fail.

  14. sam says:

    This article conflates the culture of some Bermudians (with Caribbean heritage) and the general tourism strategy. Then it goes on to make no suggestions in any event as to how we should compete.

    It is one of the most absurd opinion pieces this year.

  15. Navin Johnson says:

    The “majority” of us have have been to sun splash in Jamaica and test match in Antigua? Seriously? Majority of Bermudians? In fact the Majority of people outside of Bermuda have no clue where we are

    • Jim Jones says:

      The man just pulls stuff out of thin air and passed them off as fact.

      Just like “Technically, this could be considered fraud.” Really, Mr. Famous? Care to explain how?

  16. PBanks says:

    Heh. I’m not surprised that people are beating up on the author for this piece, but some folks are acting as if they expected a 60-Minutes calibre of article based on the headline.

  17. steve says:

    Stop singling out Mr Famous, most opinion pieces (in both daily’s) are politically motivated,racially laced,ignorant or all the above. You can count on Larry Burchill..maybe another one or two.. Whatever happened to Tom Vesey? His articles were thought out, interesting with a good dash of humor.

  18. Cherri says:

    It’s laughable how many missed the point. Caribbean when convenient was the point of this. Smh

    • Jim Jones says:

      yeah but the BTA has absolutely no control over Tony Brannon and/or the Hamilton Princess. This whole article is ridiculous.

  19. TMI says:

    So Chris would you like for Mr. Hanbury head of BTA to apologise and make the correction and then stand firm the we are a Tropical Atlantic island?

  20. Cup Of Tea Anyone? says:

    I like my cake with tea. this guy is a real binford.

    toodles!

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