Sunday, 3 May 2020

Covid-19 Update from Seychelles

Schedule on Lifting of Lock-Down Restrictions in Seychelles, Commercial Flights to Resume 1st June 2020

The Seychelles Department of Health has released details of the planned schedule for the easing of lock-down restrictions in the country. The Tourism Industry welcomed the news that, if all goes according to plan, commercial flights will resume as of the 1st of June 2020 - among other announcements. 

View the document below for more information. 

Monday, 27 April 2020

Covid-19 Update from Seychelles

[REPOST] Address by President Danny Faure on the easing of restrictions related to the COVID-19 situation | 27 April 2020 

Today, more than 3 million people around the world have been infected with the coronavirus. The number of people that have died with COVID-19 is more than 200, 000. We see the suffering and pain caused by this virus every day on the news. In these difficult moments, Seychelles stands in solidarity with countries and people around the world at war with this virus.

Tuesday, 26 November 2019

Hotel Updates

Bringing Island Folklore Into Focus For Tourists

Children love a good bedtime story, but a local hotel group is out to prove that Seychellois folklore can capture the imagination of anyone, especially during a vacation in the islands.

In collaboration with prominent local historians and writers, the management group for Denis Private Island, Indian Ocean Lodge and the CaranaBeach Hotel are adding a new twist to their guest experience: a series of tales based on Seychellois folklore and history, supplied nightly as part of the turn-down service.

The stories cover some of the more unique and off-beat elements of Seychelles’ history and culture, with dramatised narrations and historical perspectives coming from both oral traditions and archived records.

Considerable research and planning were required to make sure the content was not only educational, but also entertaining, Nicole St Ange, the hotel group’s PR, Branding and Communications Manager, said.

“Our folklore series aims to show a different side of Seychelles that tourists might not otherwise have a chance to learn about,” St Ange said.

Chevalier Jean-Baptiste Queau de Quincy’s exploits as governor, what happens in the Vallée de Mai during a full moon and a chilling yarn of pirate-style villainy are among the tales lined up for guests, delivered every evening by way of a message in a bottle.

“It was quite a challenge to figure out which stories we should use and how we could package them together into a consistent format,” St Ange said. “We want our guests to look forward to the next one every evening.”

Adding to the complexity of the task: some of the stories only form part of Seychelles’ oral tradition, with little to no record of them in writing, especially old fables and superstitions.

“When piecing these elements together, we often had to adopt more of a fictional approach to create an intriguing narrative, but one that would still be consistent with history,” St Ange said.

That also comprises another benefit of the project for Seychelles as a whole, according to St Ange, as the folklore series will capture in writing some elements that have never found their way into history texts.

“All of the stories and their origins belong to Seychelles, but the way we’ve packaged them is a special treat for our guests,” St Ange said. “It’s one more memory to take with them.”

Monday, 25 November 2019

Seychelles in the Spotlight

Seychelles Tourism Board joined by Turkish Airlines and Luxury Cruising Company – Crystal Cruises, promote Seychelles in Los Angeles, California, USA.

The Seychelles Tourism Board (STB) in collaboration with its partners Turkish Airlines and Luxury Cruising Company – Crystal Cruises, organized a “Seychelles Promotional Dinner” event for some 85 tourism professionals in the city of Los Angeles, California, USA. 

The event, which was centered on the destination, its attractions and the various available products and services, took place at the Taix French Restaurant in October 2019. 

As part of the evening, the 85 tourism professionals present enjoyed an extensive destination presentation by Mr. David Germain, STB Regional Director for Africa and the Americas, as he showcased the pristine beaches, lush flora including the various Islands to be visited. 

The two partners to the events Crystal Cruises and Turkish Airlines also conducted presentations about their products and services associated with Seychelles.

Crystal Cruises Company- a Luxury Cruising Company headquartered in Los Angeles- presented to the Los Angeles participants its upcoming project in the archipelago. The “Crystal Esprit”, a Luxury vessel will be positioned in Seychelles for 3 months, between January, February and March 2020, offering an all-inclusive eight-day program in the Seychelles for potential clients. 

Turkish Airlines, on its part presented the daily flights offers from North America to its central hub, Istanbul, with easy connections to Seychelles as the airline also operates daily flights to the archipelago from their hub.

The participants were also given a varied taste of what their clients can expect from a luxury Seychelles holiday and it included information about ground-handling services, to Cruises and flight schedules. 

Speaking about the initiative to have such an important outreach in the North American market, the STB Regional Director for Africa and the Americas mentioned that the event was organized with the objective of raising the destination’s profile further in the North American region. 

“Collaboration is key as we endeavor to grow the Seychelles’ tourism market share in North America, and on the entire continent. I am very satisfied with the outcome of the event and satisfied as well with North America’s continued performance as a tourism market for Seychelles,” said Mr. Germain 

As part of the publicity operations on the Northern American territory, a media lunch event was also organized in Beverley Hills, at the popular Fig & Olive Famous French Restaurant during the same month. 

Nine journalists from some of the main publications in the Beverley Hills region attended the event. They were treated to video presentations about the Seychelles islands highlighting the products and services available, as well as the unique attractions of the archipelago.

The Seychelles Tourism Board is a member of APTA, the Association for the Promotion of Tourism to Africa, and as well as a member of USTOA, the United States Tour Operator Association.

Sunday, 24 November 2019

Seychelles In The Spotlight

Seychelles’ Ecological Commitment Commended in the UK News

Making the most of their presence in London for the World Travel Market (WTM), Seychelles Minister of Tourism, Civil Aviation, Ports & Marine, Mr. Didier Dogley and Seychelles Tourism Board (STB) Chief Executive Mrs. Sherin Francis met with several key media specialists earlier in November.

The press meetings aimed at urging the UK and other countries to join the fight against climate change, focused on raising the alarms about the various effect of the global warming; particularly the vulnerability of destinations such as the small island nation are facing with the rising water levels.

Seychelles, 115-islands archipelago state, is a pioneer in the Indian Ocean and the world through its continuous actions in reinforcing its national policies for conservation.

As pioneers, the Seychelles continually takes steps towards cementing its national climate change policy, meaning that the targeted 30% consensus of protecting the sea will be met 10 years earlier than scheduled, according to both the Minister and the STB Chief Executive.

During a live interview with BBC Africa, Minister Dogley, a former Minister for Environment, Energy and Climate Change explained the impacts of climate change on the lives of the Seychellois people.  He further commented on how his environmentally conscious home nation is a model for sustainable tourism with its array of unique sites.                

Minister Dogley further revealed that in such a world where unspoiled natural land and seascapes are becoming a rare asset, it was a real pleasure to see European countries and destinations, including China and India, getting on board with the movement.

In previous interviews, it has been stated by the Minister that Seychellois people have no choice but to sustain and maintain their environmental standards, out of sheer necessity.

Spreading a similar message, Mrs. Sherin Francis, recounts driving through inundated roads, on the East coast of Mahé, in order to get to work.

Mrs. Francis was interviewed across the 7th - 8th of November by the BBC (World News and Wildlife), as well as Sky News, Arise News and City Metric. Her message was clear: ‘Be our ambassadors when you leave the Seychelles, and spread the word about climate change’.

Speaking candidly, the Chief Executive also stated that the shared vision between the government and STB, and the actions taken to iron out climate issues, has promoted an eco-warrior mentality across the generations.

Some of the more talked about achievements discussed by Mrs. Francis included the ban of single use plastics, which came into effect in 2018, and the campaign aimed at reaching out to potential holidaymakers.

With Britain being the fourth largest European incoming market, after Germany, France and Italy, visitors are encouraged to join in on beach clean ups, wildlife tagging or planting coral.

Saturday, 23 November 2019

Seychelles in the Spotlight

Top selling Agents of Emirates Holidays visit Seychelles on a FAM trip

The Seychelles Tourism Board (STB) through its office in Dubai, in partnership with Emirates Holidays and with the support of local partners in Seychelles organized a familiarization (FAM) trip to the paradise destination for top travel agents across Dubai.

The visit was organised in line with the STB strategy to increase Seychelles’ visibility through the education of its close partners.

As part of their visit in the destination, the small group of agents were given the opportunity to experience and be inspired by the beauty of the islands, partaking in activities such as touring of the capital, Victoria and its cultural landmarks, ziplinging and cruising the islands.

During their visit, the Dubai agents received a warm Seychellois welcome from the various hotel partners including Constance Ephelia, Four Seasons Resort, Constance Lemuria, Hilton Northolme Resort, Raffles Seychelles, Kempinski Resort Seychelles, Banyan Tree Resort, and Avani Seychelles Barbarons Resort & Spa and were able to familiarize themselves with the products and services offered by these establishments.

The Account manager for STB office in Dubai, Mr. Ahmed Fathallah commented on the FAM trip, stating “The entire experience enhanced their knowledge to better promote and sell the destination and they can impart their personal experience to their clients, which can help them entice travelers to visit the beautiful Seychelles. We will definitely be working on having more FAM Trips in the future as incentive to the hardest working agents. These FAM Trips serves not only as a motivation but as well as an educational experience to provide edge and added knowledge about the destination.”

Prior to the FAM trip, Emirates Holidays ran a campaign among their agents – the top sellers of Seychelles will get the chance to win a place on a FAM trip to the destination.

Compared to the previous year, market performance in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) has seen positive increases; the UAE to 22%, Kuwait to 14%, and Saudi Arabia to 18%, making the region increasingly significant to the Seychelles.

Friday, 22 November 2019

Industry News

Seychelles to celebrate the Wonders of the Ocean through its Ocean Festival 

A series of activities have been organised to commemorate this year’s Seychelles Ocean Festival (SOF) by the Seychelles Tourism Board (STB) and its various partners. 

The event, which promotes marine-based tourism in the island archipelago, is to be held from Friday November 22, 2019 to Sunday November 24, 2019 and will be celebrated through a plethora of education and fun activities throughout the weekend.

In line with the STB marketing strategy, which includes promoting Seychelles as one of pioneers of conservation in the region, the SOF is a prime event for the destination as it provides a platform STB to sensitize the local population about the role and importance of the marine world for Seychelles as a destination.

The Minister for Tourism, Civil Aviation, Ports and Marine, Didier Dogley launched this year’s edition of the SOF on Friday November 22, 2019 at Eden Blue in a small ceremony, which regrouped various environment and tourism stakeholders all present for the good cause. 

Speaking at the launch of the festivities Mrs. Sherin Francis STB Chief Executive commented on the commitment of the various partners in making the event a success. 

“It is our civic duty to protect our environment for our future generation and for our planet. As a small country, we are extremely affected by global warming and because of that, our destination is threatened. Our promise of paradise to our potential visitors is mainly dependent on our ocean; this is why we put such emphasis on creating awareness around its conservation. It is very encouraging to see the dedication of our young people for our environment through their response to our call for collaboration,” said Mrs. Francis. 

She also commended the various partners including the Ministry of Environment & Climate Change, the Ministry of Education, the Seychelles National Parks Authority (SNPA), the National Sports Council and the various NGO’s who have actively participated in the preparations of the events. 

The festivities will be closed on Sunday November 24, 2019 at Beau-Vallon with a beach clean-up, a yoga session and a family fun day on the programme. Several competitions– volleyball, football, amongst others are also on the activities for the day. 

The SOF remains an important feature in Seychelles’ calendar of events and a key platform for highlighting the many attributes of Seychelles’ marine scene and all that it offers to visitors and locals alike.

Wednesday, 20 November 2019

Seychelles in the Spotlight

Seychelles shines as partner country at German Travel Show

The Seychelles takes center stage as the official partner country of the major German Travel and Tourism Fair, ReiseLust. The fair ran from Friday November 8, 2019 to Sunday the November 10, 2019 in the Free Hanseatic City of Bremen, the second-largest city in Northern Germany.

The 15th edition of the fair featured around 550 exhibitors, showcasing their products, services and destinations to the 40,205 visitors who attended the three-day event. 

Advertised as the partner country to the event, Seychelles featured on massive posters and billboard around the city, enticing visitors to attend the fair, giving the destination a definite advantage.

Visitors present at the fair were not only given access to information about the destination, but they could also book their next vacation on the spot, making the event an ideal one to conclude some direct sales to the paradise destination.

The Seychelles delegation was led by STB Director for Germany Edith Hunzinger, accompanied by STB Senior Marketing Executive Natacha Servina and Marketing Executive Rolira Young and Sören Teichert from the STB Office in Frankfurt.

 Several partners, including tour operators and hotels were also present to market their product alongside the STB team in Bremen these were representatives from Acajou Hotel, Castello Beach Hotel, Le Duc de Praslin, Hilton Hotels & Resorts, Lavigne Reisen, SeyVillas, Valmer Resort, and VPM Bestsail.

STB Director for Germany commented that the archipelago’s participation to the ReiseLust event as a partner remains a great honour, adding on to its value as a great holiday destination.
She mentioned that the Bremen is prospering economy and affluent citizenry makes it an ideal location to attract new visitors to the Seychelles.

“I am proud to have had again the opportunity to head an amazing delegation to represent our destination,” Ms. Hunzinger said “I am confident that the great teamwork with our loyal partners will bring yet another boost to the already impressive figure of German visitors to the Seychelles.”

STB and their partners showcased the Creole culture at the stall, through live performances of music and dances by the “Lansiv” group and gave VIP guests a culinary experience with smoked fish and pineapple, tuna balls and mango salad and even a taste of the local rums and Seybrew beer.

Giving the Seychelles stand an artistic touch, local artist, James Agricole, joined the Seychelles delegation to display the vibrant colors of the Island destination and interacting with the public by giving them the opportunity to paint pictures with him.

The highlight of the fair was the raffle organized on the last day of the event. Visitors were given the chance to win a week’s holiday cruise for two in the Seychelles, with flight tickets sponsored by Condor and the week’s sailing experience by VPM Bestsail. In order to win, participants had to answer three questions related to the Seychelles on a postcard.

As part of its participation to the fair, Seychelles received extensive coverage by the local media, with Ms. Hunzinger giving numerous interviews.

Aside from the fair, a travel-agent dinner workshop was held on Friday evening for 21 travel agencies, giving the German market an insight on the latest developments in the Seychelles.

Tuesday, 19 November 2019

Airline News

Seychelles Tourism Board signs agreement UK flag carrier airline in London

It is earlier this month during the Seychelles participation at the 40th edition of the World Travel Market (WTM) that the Seychelles Tourism Board (STB) Chief Executive, Mrs. Sherin Francis and  British Airways representative (BA), Mr. Juan C Giraldo signed the agreement fastening future collaborations between the two companies for the coming year.

The newly signed agreement follows the contract signed in 2017, prior to the start of direct flight to the Seychelles route including joint promotional activities between the two companies.  

As a result of the signature of this agreement, Seychelles was heavily featured across the campaign, which ultimately lead to a great first year of operation on the UK/Seychelles route for the airline.

On the Seychelles’ side, Mrs. Francis mentioned that with STB’s participation to the 2020 January sale partnership with the airline the destination is anticipating another successful campaign next year as the sale is also supported by a large media campaign.

She further mentioned that the STB’s commitment to the project is also an investment to ensure the Seychelles Islands as a holiday destination stands out in the market at a time when other travel brands are also on sale. 

“This agreement reinforces the collective business rapport between STB and British Airways. Since the airline has started flying again to Seychelles in 2018 the arrival numbers for the UK, market has been increasing consistently to our mutual satisfaction. Our partner investment will definitely up-weight the campaign, which will provide an add-on to our image as a destination,” said Mrs. Francis.

The campaign runs at a peak booking period on the UK and Irish markets.  As such, many airlines, Tour operators and tourism boards including the STB choose to advertise heavily at this time to ensure we are at the forefront of the consumer’s minds as they plan and book their holidays for the year ahead.

The event, which was part of the engagements of the Seychelles Tourism Board (STB) Chief Executive, Mrs. Sherin Francis during her business trip in London also focused on the collaboration of the two companies, their respective strategies.

Friday, 15 November 2019

Industry News

Top Singapore Travel Company in Seychelles for a familiarisation visit

The successful visit organised through the Seychelles Tourism Board (STB) with the support of various local partners, followed a sales visit earlier this year by the Mrs. Amia Jovanovic-Desir, the Director for India, Australia and South East Asia in Singapore.

Ms Crystal Sims, the CEO of the international Travel Agency Albatross World, made a special effort to see the Seychelles on a familiarisation for ten days by the end of October 2019. This trip was the prime opportunity for her to also experience the products and services.

During her working visit to Seychelles, Ms. Sim had the opportunity to have an overview of the destination through the diverse attractions available on islands of Mahé, Praslin and La Digue, which are the most frequented island- including the pristine beaches and the Vallée de Mai.

As part of her explorations of the islands and tourist attractions, Ms. Sims also had the chance to stay at the Four Seasons Resorts on Desroches Island and Hilton Seychelles, LaBriz Resort and SPA on Silhouette.

Several meetings with core tourism stakeholders including key Destination Management Companies (DMC) in Seychelles, through which the representatives presented their products and services providing the Singapore professional with a clearer idea of what holidaymakers would expect while in Seychelles.

Ms. Sims also met with the Minister for Tourism, Civil Aviation, Ports and Marine, Mr Didier Dogley, Mrs. Sherin Francis, STB’s Chief Executive and her Team during which discussions were centred towards the strategic approach of how to tap into the Singaporean market. Throughout the debates all partners agreed that further collaborations with the tourism trade partners on both end need to be encouraged.

Ms. Sims mentioned that her perception of Seychelles has surpassed her expectation. She added that she was impressed to see the natural beauty of the islands and the strong commitment of the Seychellois people including its government to preserve the environment.

“The world will love travellers who roam beautiful places with ease, and one corner of the globe not yet fully appreciated is the Seychelles.  We will become better people if we know the Seychelles, truly another world,” said Ms. Sims

Speaking of the visit from the Singaporean partner, Mrs. Amia Jovanovic-Desir mentioned that she is pleased to see that the continuous efforts done by STB to meet with international partners being rewarded.

“As a prime collaborator to several international partners, such collaborations add to our marketing strategy and what we are currently doing to further position on the market. FAM trips are one of the most cost effective marketing activities for the destination to engage more agents to boost their knowledge on the Seychelles and its products and to push more interest to be converted into sales, added Amia Jovanovic- Desir.

Mrs. Jovanovic- Desir expressed STB’s sincere appreciation to all the partners who have supported in making this FAM trip a success, she extended special thank you to the Four Seasons Resort at Desroches, Hilton Seychelles Northolme Resort and SPA, Hilton Seychelles Labriz Resort and SPA, Double Tree by Hilton Seychelles, Le Meridien Fisherman’s Cove and Patatran Hotel.