‘Bermuda Can Be Year-Round Resort’

December 8, 2011

Minister of Business Development & Tourism returned to Bermuda yesterday [Dec.7] after a trip to New York City that saw him deliver the island’s tourism message to a high profile group of media and influencers and lead a sales and marketing meeting designed to review 2011 activities and upcoming initiatives for the first quarter of 2012.

At the sales and marketing meeting held earlier yesterday, Minister Furbert reinforced the importance of driving business to the island during the first quarter, traditionally known as the shoulder period.

The group discussed tactical planning surrounding several leading initiatives for early 2012, including events such as Bermuda’s first Restaurant Week, the annual Feel the Love Month, as well as two new initiatives, both taking place in March, 2012, Spring Break and College Week Reunion.

Minister Furbert said, “I am a numbers man, and my job is to help find the most effective ways to increase the number of visitors to our shores.

Minister Furbert At A Bermuda Tourism Presentation In New York

“I see no reason why Bermuda shouldn’t be a viable and attractive four-season destination, so I’ve challenged our team to think big and work intelligently to utilise their collective tourism sales and marketing expertise to impact the year-round growth we need.”

On Monday [Dec. 6], Minister Furbert hosted more than 50 top travel agents, group planners and media at the prestigious James Beard House.

He delivered a message on Bermuda’s key selling points while guests enjoyed the cuisine of acclaimed Chef Jean Claude Garzia of Bermuda’s Beau Rivage restaurant.

Bermuda Department of Tourism [BDOT] representatives in attendance included: William Griffith, Director of Tourism; Ann Shutte, Director of Global Operations; along with members of the New York office’s sales team.

Additionally, representatives from the Department of Tourism’s contracted public relations, media buying and digital marketing agencies for North America and the UK were in also attendance.

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  1. Triangle Drifter says:

    Face it, except for the attraction of golf, Bermuda is NOT a year round destination. Never has been. Never will be.

    There are however so,me cooler month events which could be promoted as a reason to visit.

    Since 1998 Bermuda has had a Christmas Boat Parade. At consistently 50 plus boats, it is quite a large one as far a boat parades go.

    Have the DOT or few remaining hotels ever done a promotion featuring the parade? Not once. Not ever. Opportunity lost. A great event, that is free, for visitors to litteraly rub shoulders with the locals.

  2. Curious George says:

    Spring Break and College Week Reunion? Really?

    • Tommy Chong says:

      I’m just as confused as you George. Does our minister really think grown ups with families & responsibilities want to relive their wild & crazy college days. Do we invite them to bring their families along also. “Hey Junior watch grandma streak across Horseshoe Bay like she did when she was 19.”

  3. Mad Dawg says:

    I always wonder why they miss the biggest unique thing about Bermuda; its ties to Britain. Look at the pictures above. The tourism minister is trying to drum up business for Bermuda. Where are his Bermuda shorts? He’s wearing a Wall Street suit.

    Last year there was a Royal Wedding, that people the world over, including in the US, were excited about. Bermuda did nothing to try to attract tourists based off that.

    Next year is the Queen’s 60th anniversary. It’s potentially a big deal; you could put together special commemorative events to take advtantage of it.

    But no, we spend out time arguing about whether to have a casino so we can be more like Atlantic City.

  4. navin johnson says:

    you need to look at everything..you do not have a royal wedding every day and you do not have a 60th anniversary every day all could be part of the overall theme….Walton Brown wants to do away with all things British and yet if you poll many of the tourists they love the British touch of the island… I dont think the casino will turn us into Atlantic City but would like to think of it as a British/Burmudian Monte Carlo…..

  5. Can't Take It Anymore says:

    Stop being so negative all the time guys. Seriously!

  6. Tommy Chong says:

    I don’t know why we are not promoting Spring Break for college & university students? There are still better prices on airfare from U.S. to Bermuda than anywhere else in the Caribbean or Central & South America. Also Bermuda is still a lot safer than the other destinations spring breakers go to. Oh right!!! I remember now why we don’t promote spring break for students. Bermuda only has empty but still overpriced accommodations for all our imaginary high profile tourist that visit. The other reason I remember now is that our tourist industry is TOOOOO STUCK UP & SOPHISTICATED!!!! to allow mass amounts of wild & crazy teens to come & party in Bermuda because stuff like that just doesn’t happen here. It especially doesn’t happen on Cup Match & we all know that teens would never want to take advantage of our lower drinking age laws here. Right?

    • Bermudian@heart.. says:

      Bermuda done that several years ago, and spent about 2 million doing so , and it was too late ,that year i think we only got about 1500 ..years before that, we use to atract about 15000 every year those days are gone they now go to Jamaica and Cuba ..on this case greed killed the piggy,,,cause you canot ever have the pie and eat it too.

      • Tommy Chong says:

        Several years ago? When was this? 2 million spent on what, bringing gombeys to show to North America? Like Junkanoo dancers are not a part of other caribbean cultures already & tourist will be itching to come to Bermuda to see them. The last real spring break Bermuda hosted was in the early 80s when the hotel rooms, food, taxis & moped rentals where inexpensive, live entertainment was everywhere, disco 40, rum runners & hawkins island had tourists & locals partying hard & babylon turned a blind eye to ganja smokers. Then the powers that be got on some we’re better & more elite than the caribbean & lets turn our full attention to competing with cayman in the IB market tip & the plot was lost. Now we’ve found ourselves in over our heads we need to get back to basics. This is why tourist go to the caribbean because its “No Problem Mon!” not “That will be $20 plus grats for your burger & fries & $200 for your room sir.” I really don’t think many students go to cuba since its just as conservative as Bermuda & yes they go to to Jamaica but even with recent crime rise here there is still more chances of being shot, stabbed, robbed & raped there. Thats why there are guards with machine guns on fenced in beaches in the caribbean not here.

  7. ya says:

    Ya right, college kids are really going to pass up Cancun for Bermuda. Especially when they get caught with a spliff and get a $5000 fine! Let them get drunk and they will be arrested. Not to mention that there are no string bikini’s, gambling, partying, wet T-Shirt contests, weed, and every other thing we on this retarded island are against and college kids live for. And don’t forget how expensive this rock is. Unless we are ready to stop being this conservative and boring island, we can forget college weeks!

    • GoodIdea says:

      I think you’ve hit the nail on the head there! There are no shortage of cheap, all-inclusive places in destinations like Cancun that can offer all you can eat and drink, all you can party, mega nightclubs, and 24 hour action. All for well less than it costs to stay in our somewhat dated hotels.

      On the flip side of the coin, there’s only a limited number of “high worth” individuals who will choose Bermuda as their destination of choice when they have other similar places in the world to spend their money.

      One of the main draws here in the winter is that when it isn’t blowing a gale, you can still golf. Otherwise, there isn’t much more than the “quaintness” and “Britishness” of the island to draw people.

      • Triangle Drifter says:

        Imagine Bermuda overun by Snookies.

        The Cancuun crowd is not coming to Bermuda. Too stuffy & too expensive. The kids of the mega wealthy are not coming either. They like to party just as hard as anyone else. Stop them for a little bit of personal weed & you will never ever see them again.

  8. FrankTalk says:

    Have we not previously looked at year round tourism? What happened there? How about no one wants to play golf in cold, wet, windy conditions we tend to get in winter?

    The kind tourists that care about old English “quaintness” or a (boat) parade aren’t looking to spend $500+ a night on accommodation.

    Simply put we are too expensive a destination and a large degree of this we can’t help. $15k for a week a Tuckers Point? Seriously?

    There is (or can be) a very small niche market of repeat customers provided we can give them what they want. BTW how long is a piece of string?

    What they want is privacy, exclusivity and impeccable service.

    We can do this but the market is very small and won’t give us the economic boost we are all hoping for.


    • GoodIdea says:

      Remember the “68 degree guarantee?”

      That didn’t work out too well….

  9. Yes come to Bermuda in JAN and see all the happy Bermudian’s face’s that are out of work!! Oh yea the ex-pats are still smiling!!!

    • deshawn says:

      I’ll be smiling in Jan because an ex-pat employs me and pays my wages, without which i’d have no job, no home, no food.

      Keep your racist nonsense to yourself and go educate yourself to compete with expats to find work – not just a degree, but skills and manners and attitude.

    • Guest Who? says:

      @want a be
      Don’t worry it won’t be long and the Bermudians will be still out of work and the expats will be smiling… from Cayman!

    • Book your ticket soon!!!

  10. RobbieM says:

    Bermuda needs to build a Convention Centre to attract groups in the off-season. This Convention Centre could be funded by a Government Bond sold to locals and foreigners alike.

    • GoodIdea says:

      Or they could build a new hotel in St Georges… Oh wait…. Or they could develop Morgans Point… Oh wait…. Or they could build a casino and attract cruise ship passengers… Oh wait… Or how about a hotel in Par La Ville carpark… Oh wait…

      And the saga continues.

      • PEPPER says:

        So many promises !!!! the saga (lies ) will continue…The Premier is doing exactly what the former premier did business as usual.

  11. My two cents says:

    Tourism from Jan-Mar. is not viable, too much horrible windy rainy weather. I will agree that April-Dec. is viable for at least golf. However, I want those in charge of tourism to understand many people go to a beach destination so they can go to the beach. Our beaches are a huge part of our tourism and when it’s too cold to get into the ocean its a tough sell. The water is not comfortable for swimming until mid to late June. And by November, she’s too cold again. This is a dilemma.

    • Tommy Chong says:

      Horrible windy rainy weather? This isn’t London, there’s been many winters in Bermuda when people are praying for rain to fill their tanks. The majority of winter days in Bermuda are Bermudaful just like today. Have you ever swam in the south of France, Spain or Portugal or Monaco? Talk about shriveled loquats. OUCH!!! The water is always cold in these places winter or summer but tourist still flock to them for their beaches dark sand and all. Tourist might not like the beaches here during the winter because of having to track through mounds of seaweed W&E doesn’t rake up because they THINK tourist don’t go to the beach in the winter. The only freeze that keeps tourist away from Bermuda is the one their bank puts on their card when its overdrawn from the last rip off vacation they had here.

  12. Mad Dawg says:

    The tourism minister appears to have overlooked something. Before he left office as Premier, Dr Brown told us that financing was in place, and the building of the Park Hyatt would start in November 2011. And earlier this year, Minister Minors, when she was the tourism minister, reiterated that building work on the Park Hyatt would start in November 2011.

    As we all know, we can trust these PLP Ministers. They wouldn’t ever tell us a complete lie. Because that would mean they are untrustworthy and we know that can’t be true. So, Minister Furbert, we can all look forward to the Park Hyatt opening soon, as promised by the PLP. Right?

    • navin johnson says:

      and Mad Dawg if you go back in time to December 2007 you will find that Premier Doctor Brown as part of his election promises stated that work would begin on the Park Hyatt before year end 2007!!!!!

      • Triangle Drifter says:

        There is a reason I call the PLP The Gonna Government. They are always gonna do something. Trouble is, that ‘something’ hardly ever comes into being.

        The few things that actually do get accomplised are done after huge delays or massive cost overuns.

        Another reason that PLP & the word inept are often found in the same sentence.

  13. dubcity youth says:

    Grew up in Bermuda left the island when I was 17. I am now living in New York. I have brought friends to the island for cup match. They surprised how stuffy it was, no casino, no real night clubs, customs acting like FBI just rude. They would rather go to JA, DR, Vegas, and NY for good time. If I did not family on the rock I would never come back , the only thing I look forward to when I do come home is fish cakes and swimming at Shelly Bay. Just Sad

    • In Mark's Opinion says:

      I agree , my friends don’t want to return to Bermuda after coming pass our FBI rude custom officer’s , man I don’t like to return home after a beautiful trip ,next they will be taking dogs in hotels rooms like they do on cruise ships . If Bermuda wants to be in the Tourism Business we have to relax and let people relax when they come on vacation .

  14. belcario thomas says:

    WHERE were all you guys when the proposed temporary, wooden decked beach bar and restaurant to offer chilled Cafe Del Mar energy was being proposed? We let proponents against responsible, fun energy shoot things down more so than we excitedly get behind dynamic out the box efforts. College Weeks is a no-brainer, of course we can do it under tightly coordinated exciting packages, executed in close partnerships with established party promoters along the East Coast. I could execute this with support. Non to little is expected…we need to feel more pain, then our ilk will likely be more sought after. Till then friends…

  15. Ya says:

    You are right! This island sucks! It’s boring, expensive and you have to deal with so many miserable people. These hypocrite church folk keep this island so conservative and stuffy, and then wonder why there are no tourists!

  16. rick olson says:

    This is the best you will get from MP Furbert same old same old . Please do the right thing WAYNE STEP ASIDE FOR THE SAKE OF BERMUDA and progress we need a tourism authority . You are in a difficult job with no easy answers stop wasting our money and your time we need fresh ideas and a game changer mentality .

  17. AmericanCousin says:

    I’m surprised none of you have mentioned one of the main reasons tourism is down — crime. I visited family in Bermuda about 20 times up till 2002, when things really seemed to be getting bad on the island. People weren’t as friendly, taxi drivers weren’t charming any more…

    My old aunties just complained about “boys” breaking into homes…crime… One cousin said it would be just a few years before murders started happening…and sadly, she was right.

    I returned home, started reading The Royal Gazette more regularly, and saw all the crime, and thought, “Why pay all that money to risk a hotel room invasion?”

    Now I’ll return for funerals, sadly, that’s it…we bought a beach home in the states, and though it’s not as lovely as Bermuda, it’s safe. No crime. (And to put this in perspective, I live in Washington, D.C. We don’t have purse snatchings routinely in Georgetown in broad daylight — you seem to have more crime than DC, given your population!)

    Why haven’t the Bermudians demanded the police exert curfews, confiscations, drug rehab…the island is so small…I can’t believe you have not all risen up to demand better services from the police?

    And of course, so much of this starts with social issues that sadly, Bermuda, such a polarized society now, never effectively addressed.

    I feel very, very sad about the state of affairs in Bermuda. And don’t kid yourselves…a casino will only make your social ills worse.

    Please tell me there are people working to improve things in Bermuda. I’d love to take my kids there someday.