BTB Hosts Twenty-Second National Tourism Award
The Belize Tourism Board (BTB) held its annual Belize National Tourism Awards. This signature event is geared at recognizing the accomplishments of tourism stakeholders. BTB recognized outstanding performance across various categories. The award gala was held in Belize City on Saturday. Reporter, Giovanna Moguel, files this report.
Belize’s tourism stakeholders celebrated their advancements and accomplishments over the weekend with the 2022 installment of the Belize National Tourism Awards. Accolades were distributed at the award gala in Belize City. Minister of Tourism, Anthony Mahler, emphasized that the event started out rather small, but over the years has grown into a major highlight of the tourism calendar.
Anthony Mahler, Minister of Tourism: “This has become our Oscars and our Grammys and this is the biggest award night for anything happening in Belize so I want to salute all the members who make up the tourism industry and all the people who work tirelessly day in and day out to ensure that we have 47% of our GDP working for the betterment of all Belizeans.”
The first award of the night, Best Frontline Worker, was given to recognize the employee who demonstrated a genuine dedication to providing quality customer care and hospitality to guests. The winner of this category was the front desk clerk at Blue Zen Resort, Charlenne Young. She says the job is not difficult as her kindness comes naturally.
Charlenne Young, Blu Zen Resort: “I feel very grateful coming from the charming village of Caye Caulker. It’s in me because as I meet people every day this is my personality. I want everyone to get a first impression of me so it’s very important as I work at Blue Zen in my daily tasks this i what I love. This is what I do so for me this reward is very very good, breathtaking, words can’t explain. I’m grateful.”
Tour guides are among the main pillars, which sustain the sector. They bring to life the culture, history, and natural wonders of the country for the world to see. The tour guide of the year award went to the individual who displayed a wealth of knowledge, while also providing a captivating enthralling experience for travelers. That award was given to Tour Guide at Blue Heaven Dives and Tours, Sherman Cain, who says this will serve as motivation for him to improve his craft.
Sherman Cain, Heaven Dives and Tours: “It’s a job that I take very seriously. It doesn’t mean that I got that award that my level stops there, there is always room for me to excel more. So it’s a privilege and I’m very grateful, thank you guys once again and I really appreciate it.”
With over seven ethnic groups in Belize, the country overflows with a cornucopia of dishes. Cuisine forms a crucial part of the cultural experience of the tourism product, which is why the Restaurant of the Year award was given to the establishment which offers a diverse selection of dishes and a welcoming dining environment. Elvi’s Kitchen in San Pedro was given the award and Chef Jenny Staines says their success for the past thirty-five years has been rooted in their providing stellar service to their customers.
Chef Jenny Staines, Elvi’s Kitchen: “Everyday for the past thirty six years everyday when I wake up and I go to work I go to work with this passion. Food is my life and I’m trying to do the best that I could with all the youngsters in Belize to teach them that Belize has cuisine. Because we have what most countries they all have good food and good cuisine but we have a lot of flavor.”
And, thus punctuates a memorable award night that was geared at recognizing the hard work put into maintaining the country’s revenue-driving industry. Giovanna Moguel for Love News.