Black Meetings and Tourism

May/June 2012

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 76 of 80

AREA GUIDES U.S.V.I. MEET IN THE CARIBBEAN WITHOUT LEAVING THE U.S. BY SOLOMON J. HERBERT II The U.S. Virgin Islands is located in the eastern Caribbean, just 1,100 miles southeast of Miami. Surrounded by the clear blue waters of the Caribbean, the average temperature ranges from 77°F in the winter to 83°F in the summer. The trio of breathtaking beauties — St. Croix, St. John, and St. Thomas — offer the per- fect setting to enhance your meeting's productivity and create just the right inspi- ration your group will need. Each of the islands is unique in its offerings and cultural amenities. Whether planning for a group of CEOs or an incen- tive retreat with spouses and children in tow, knowledgeable meeting managers and enthusiastic destination management companies (DMCs) are available to sup- ply the latest technology and prepare cre- ative itineraries. Venues range from impressive luxury resorts to smaller inti- mate locations, and provide a profession- al atmosphere for business with an exten- sive list of off-site locations for hosting functions. Located on St. Thomas, the French- man's Reef & Morning Star Marriott Beach Resort is an excellent option for meeting planners to consider. This 450- guestroom hotel boasts 31 meeting rooms and 60,000 plus sq. ft. of indoor/outdoor event space. The Grand Harbour Ballroom's 14,112 sq. ft. can host up to 1,400 guests with theater seating. An executive gathering of five or a business conference of 250 will find appropriate amenities at The Westin St. John hotel. Equipped with 175 guest rooms, The Westin's flexible indoor meet- ing space includes the 3,500-sq. ft. Great Cruz Ballroom, a 10,000-sq. ft. confer- ence center and five multifunction meet- ing rooms. The beach side tented Palm Terrace is ideal for receptions and dinners. For a smaller more intimate meeting, the 150-guest room Windward Passage Hotel has three meeting rooms that can 76 St. Thomas Paradise Tram View accommodate up to 350 people. Standard meeting equipment, including tables, chairs, podium, flip chart, easel, and microphone are supplied at no extra charge. With the rich culture and amazing ambiance the beautiful islands of USVI have to offer, meeting planners are assured to find something entertaining into which all conference attendees can delve. And making sure that meeting planners kept informed about all that the islands have to offer is Commissioner of Tourism Beverly Nicholson-Doty, a strong advo- cate for reach- ing out to the African-Am-eri- can market seg- ment. The St. Croix Heritage Trail is a popular attrac- tion guaranteed to leave tourists in awe. The unique influ- ences of Danish, French, Spanish, West Indian, African and other cultures on the architecture and history of the island are evident during this self-guided driving tour. Visitors can follow the Heritage Trail map and visit 200 historic and cultural sights on St. Croix. Virgin Islands National Park offers BEVERLY NICHOLSON-DOTY attendees looking to venture off to St. John a taste of geographical magnifi- cence. Two-thirds of St. John's 19 square miles is designated as protected Photo Credit: U.S.V.I. Department of Tourism national park land. There are 22 self-guid- ed hiking trails within the Virgin Islands National Park, where visitors can discov- er ancient petroglyphs and beautiful foliage along the way. Celebrated on St. Thomas each spring, the month-long merriment of Carnival provides travelers with extrava- gant displays of pageantry, spirited music festivals, mouthwatering food offerings and colorful parades. The U.S. Virgin Islands has all of the beauty of the Caribbean with all of the convenience of the United States. English is the official language and the currency is the dollar. Best of all, pass- ports are not required for U.S. citizens visiting the U.S. Virgin Islands. There are two major airports in the Virgin Islands; the Cyril E. King Airport on St. Thomas and the Henry E. Rohlsen Airport on St. Croix. There are daily non-stop flights from most major east coast cities as well as sea- sonal flights from Boston. Connecting service from Chicago, Los Angeles, Dallas and other major cities is also available via the hub in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Commuter airlines can transport you between islands in as lit- tle as 17 minutes. The seaplane is an exciting way to travel between St. Thomas and St. Croix. WHO YOU GONNA CALL? U.S. Virgin Islands Department of Tourism (800) 372-USVI Black Meetings & Tourism May/June 2012:

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of Black Meetings and Tourism - May/June 2012