Tourism Board’s Strategic Imperatives

December 2, 2011

Introducing gaming, removing some entry barriers for new hospitality players and an organisational shift in leadership are some of the concepts recommended in the Tourism Board’s blueprint for resuscitating the industry.

Released by Government today [Dec.2], the report — titled “Establishing the Foundation for the National Tourism Plan” — is the forerunner for root-and-branch hospitality industry reforms to be unveiled next year.

The report’s introduction says, “It is our view that establishing Bermuda as a year-round destination is fundamental to any strategy to reposition Bermuda as a destination of first choice.

“To achieve this, we must move quickly to reestablish new products and services taking advantage of what we have already in place whilst simultaneously initiating new steps to build the facilities that can offer a unique Bermuda experience.

“We believe that there are opportunities for cultural and sports tourism. Marketing these new products must be a priority for the next two to three years. At the same time, we need to look at building a convention center and introducing gaming as an attractive feature that will contribute to sustaining interesting in the destination, and filling our hotels as we build new facilities.”

“We must remove barriers to the entry of new players, on-island investors and developers off-island. We recommend a comprehensive review of all legislations and policies that inhibit new developments and services on the Island. Bermuda must see new property developments and infrastructure improvements that support new opportunities for employment and business development.

“The continuity of our tourism strategy is paramount. In our view, the transition to a Tourism Authority will provide much needed autonomy and address concerns that have been expressed in the private sector. This matter will be further reviewed in the National Tourism Plan and the Board strongly recommends this organizational shift in leadership going forward.”

The full 44-page report is below, click ‘Fullscreen’ for greater clarity:

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Comments (18)

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  1. James says:

    I want to be supportive but as a long time tourism industry professional I find this to be a major disappointment. We have waited for this–Wow!

    • Not Bad says:

      I don’t think it is that bad, and as with all things at least they were explicit in calling for some things which was NOT done before.

      We need to develop the product of bermuda so I’m happy at least everyone will be singing off the same sheet. Now its time to get cracking and let’s see some action.

      Its easy to talk, now we need to work!

      • Yup says:

        After millions of dollars all we have is a foundation for a plan? It’s been 13 years and all PLP can do is come up with a foundation for a plan. How many more years will it take to actually get a Plan, and then to implement a plan. PLP is all gloss. PLP is going too slow. No action.

        • PEPPER says:

          Yup. that is all they do is come up with a plan !!or they are going to review a plan…they have no plan….and else for the post office..tell me that the guy Outerbridge has ben fired… if not he should be.

  2. navin johnson says:

    as long as its political don’t hold your breath…this will be an opportunity for Wayne and Co to get as much face and camera time as possible….and please take the word “Imperative” out of the name as that implies critical, immeadiate, important…and the way this is dragging on it seems anything but Imperative

  3. Cedar Beams (Original) says:

    Time to stop talking, stop discussing, stop considering. DO SOMETHING BEFORE BERMUDA SINKS COMPLETELY. Flip Flip – this is your moment. You will sink or swim with this.

  4. 32n64w says:

    “Establishing the Foundation”

    What part of this title actually denotes definitive, progressive, forward thinking, tangible, real action? The PLP have had more than a year (well 13 actually) and the best they can do is categorise “strategic imperatives”. Is this a joke?

    Yet another PLP hack job. Doing less with more of your tax dollars since 1998.

  5. Bermuda101 says:

    Everything in this report has to be done for Bermuda to be a competitor in the global tourism market. This board did a good job with this report but the issue is the government and Bermuda people have to be on board for things to get better.

  6. Triangle Drifter says:

    A quick look over shows a bunch of recomondations from the Monitor Group & the Competitiveness Commission many years before dating back to the early 90s.

    Essentially not much that has not been said or recommended before.

    This is just more PLP huff & puff. Stuff they say is GONNA happen, like all the other promises since 1998. Those with short memorys will slurp it up.

    The end result will be the same. Nothing.

  7. True Bermudian says:

    Not surprised, yet sad to see, decriminalizing, taxing and regulating cannabis wasn’t on that list.

    • sandgrownan says:

      Good. Come up with a decent mandatory drug test program for everyone, with stiff penalties for failure and I’m with you. Until then, it’s not happening.

  8. George Courtney says:

    calling for and doing are 2 different things, as a veteran of the bda hotel business, attracting bermudians to it may be difficult because of the irregular hours & the bda tourism is a seasonal.

    However, having worked at the sonesta beach & southampton princess on their casino nights where the players were playing for prizes as a mixologist. i can say without a doubt that these nights were a resounding success.

  9. Gang Star says:

    This is just talk and talk is cheap. We need action and we won’t get it from this Government. Election is in the air – it is the only possible explanation for this. We are about to be deceived yet again by these charlatans. The only thing they are expert at is doing NOTHING!

    • Triangle Drifter says:

      Standard response to anything is ‘lets have a committee to talk about it. After that we will have another board to talk about the comittees findings then that will be forwarded to the Minister who will take it to caucus which will send it to another comittee and on and on till the whole thing is in the back of a filing cabinet somewhere till, like a dogs bone, it is dug up to repeat the whole excerise.

      Around & around they go. The PLP really have out UBPEED the UBP.

    • Bermudian@heart.. says:

      the real sad thing about it, is that , not P.L.P no UBP. and no OBA , can do anything about , our tourism it is dead and gone sad to say it in my opinion it died when we let the college kids down, then we had that nasty strike ,since then it has all been down hill we have lost it . yes Bermuda is still very beautiful and will always be and we may get some people coming but the mass numbers forget it…. dead and gone….

  10. What is going on? says:

    Let’s just see how long it takes to implement any of these “suggestions”…. about the same time it took for new hotels to be built!!!!

  11. Free Thinker says:

    This has been he the norm for politicians, always plying “Reactive Politics” the problem with that is, when you react to crisis, you are not in control of the negotiation terms and you tend to make emotional and irrational decisions.

    Ten years ago they didn’t want gambling because they thought we were doing fine and it’s against their religious belief. Now we are in a crisis and all the praying they did, did not fix tourism. They have now decided to try something rational well, this may be a case of “too little too late” that horse have already long gone. Now you are putting food out, in an attempt to entice the horse back but that horse is probably not coming back.

    We had an opportunity to have in-port gaming for the Cruise Passengers, which by the way, would have made us a tonne of money, that was not done. Instead, we made them more unwelcome with the antics of the union. Now to get them back, we will have no choice now but to allow the Cruise Liners to allow gambling in port. By reacting to this crisis, the negotiation will be done on their terms,not on ours. If we had done it, five or ten years ago, it would have been on our terms.

    Our political leader lack the wisdom to implement policies proactively. They spend too much time praying for divine intervention, instead of using strategies, that have been proven to work time and time again.

    We need rational thinking people at the helm, that can make to right and tough decisions that will move this Island forward. Unfortunately, the divisive nature of “Party Politics”, does not allow for this. It is sad where we are heading, but unfortunate the wheels are already in motion and heading down a grade, with a lot of momentum.

  12. Kim Smith says:

    Less than a month ago we were told that the issue of gaming in Bermuda would be put to a referendum. We’ll see how good the word of this Government is… I’ll bet there will be no referendum and they will simply commit us to the gaming path with the same approach they have become known for … ready, fire, aim!!!