December 11, 2014
TRAVEL AGENTS SHINE BRIGHT AT SANDALS RESORTS ANNUAL S.T.A.R. AWARDS
~ Sandals Resorts and Beaches Resorts Honor Shining Stars at the 13th Annual Sandals Travel Agency Recognition (S.T.A.R.) Awards~
Sandals Resorts celebrated The 13th Annual Sandals Travel Agency Recognition (S.T.A.R.) Awards on December 9, 2014, at Sandals Grande Riviera Beach & Villa Golf Resort.
A total of 400 travel agents from North America, UK, Canada and Latin America traveled to Ocho Rios, Jamaica where they were recognized for their diligence and fortitude in selling the world’s best Luxury Included® vacations. Their trip consisted of activities and celebrations at Sandals Grande Riviera as they were honored for their hard work this past year. Agents also experienced and enjoyed all the Luxury Included® amenities at Sandals Grande Riviera with an itinerary that included a beach party, a luncheon hosted by the Chairman for Chairman’s Royal Club members, Island Routes Caribbean Adventure tours, an exclusive performance from Tessane Chin, winner of NBC’s “The Voice” and much more. Agents were also able to spread holiday cheer with the Sandals Foundation by giving toys to local children of Stewart Town Primary school during the annual Christmas Treats celebration.
Special guests attending the 13th annual award ceremony included President & CEO of ASTA, Mr. Zane Kerby, who personally addressed the agents; keynote speaker and Dr. The Hon. Kenneth Wykeham McNeill, Minister of Tourism and Entertainment for Jamaica and event sponsors, TravelWeek, Travel Agent magazine and AirCanada.
Sandals Resorts created the S.T.A.R. Awards in 2002 as a way to recognize top travel agents and their agencies as well as showcase the latest resort products and on-island attractions. In addition to top product, regional and national categories, the S.T.A.R. Awards announced the Worldwide Top Ten Travel Agencies, President’s and Chairman’s Awards and the Lifetime Achievement Awards. Among the impressive awards taken home this year, the distinguished group of winners included the following:
- Lifetime Achievement Awards:
o Marta Perez, Roger’s Travel
o Rita Caracola, Travel Expo
o Barbara May, Travel Leaders
o Fred Reed, Wilcox Travel
o Cindy McCabe, Bethany Travel
o Glenn McGehee, McGehee Cruise & Vacation
o Linda Martindell, Totem Travel
o Douglas Dorey, Ultima Travel
- CEO’s Award: Kira Solomon, My Paradise Planner (US)
- Chairman’s Award: Kim Hartlen, Tripcentral.ca (CAN); Mark Hennigan, Dreamer’s Travel (US)
- Worldwide Top Grand Pineapple Travel Agency Chain: American Express Travel
- Worldwide Top Beaches Travel Agency Chain: AAA Travel
- Worldwide Top Sandals Travel Agency Chain:Liberty Travel
- Worldwide Contribution to the Sandals Foundation:Jennifer Borgh, Travel Only (CAN)
- Worldwide Top Ten Travel Agencies:Nexion, INC, DestinationWeddings.com, KHM Travel Group, Enchanted Honeymoons, Travel Planners International INC/ATR Travel SVC, Cruise Planners/American Express, Vacations To Go, ITravel2000.com, LoyaltyOne Travel, V.I.P Vacations, Inc.