How to Sell High Season in the British Virgin Islands

The Pavilion Pool at Rosewood Little Dix Bay
The Pavilion Pool at Rosewood Little Dix Bay

As the BVI gears up for the high season, Travel Agent highlights some of the destination’s hottest tourism news, including improved airlift, hotel enhancements and fun events.

Peter Island Resort & Spa, which welcomed Scott Hart as its new general manager last month, has announced that it has completed its beautification project, which includes enhancements to the Mega Yacht Harbor; a new welcome pavilion, dive shop, yacht captains’ lounge and commissary; and renovations to its Ocean View and Ocean View Deluxe Suites. Peter Island also introduced Learn-to-Sail and Island-Style Boot Camp packages as well as the current Summer Villa Rental Program, which provides up to 40 percent savings on villas through October 31. Agents should reach out to Marike Friends ([email protected]), director of sales, with any queries.

Through October 31, clients can save up to 40 percent with Peter Island Resort & Spa’s Summer Villa Rental Program.
Through October 31, clients can save up to 40 percent with Peter Island Resort & Spa’s Summer Villa Rental Program.

For dedicated spa-goers, Rosewood Little Dix Bay offers a re-envisioned wellness experience that incorporates a holistic approach to health and relaxation under the guidance of new Regional Spa Director Menique De La Rosa. The award-winning spa’s new treatment menu boasts specially curated spa products, as well as the region’s natural ingredients and remedies. The resort has also partnered with Frankly Fitness of New York City to offer a complete wellness program, including onsite trainers who provide everything from consultation to classic strength and conditioning training to yoga and meditation along the spa’s private relaxation beach. Get in touch with Marketing Manager Kristoffer Sarreal ([email protected]) for more information.

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Your clients can “camp out” in style at Anegada Beach Club. This past winter, the resort added new luxury beach tent accommodations equipped with a king canopy bed, a furnished deck with a hammock big enough for two, a beautifully crafted bathroom with a hot shower, and an extra daybed. Direct any questions to Jamie Johnson ([email protected]), operations manager.

Let your foodie clients know that Scrub Island Resort, Spa & Marina recently welcomed new Director of Food and Beverage Maheesha “M” Ratnayake and new Executive Chef Juan Morrison. The resort also made hires for several other key positions, including James “Jim” Miller as managing director, Douglas “Chip” Nelson as general manager, Daniel L.A. de Kok as director of finance and Denise Gordon-Morrison as director of the Ixora Spa. Morrison and Gordon-Morrison host an evening of wellness cuisine and beverage for $25 per person; reservations are required. Sales Manager Heather Roose ([email protected]) is still the resort’s go-to person for travel agents.

The Ixora Spa at Scrub Island Resort
The Ixora Spa at Scrub Island Resort

New Flights, Pier Expansion

Due to increased demand, VI Airlink introduced a new scheduled flight that connects with Virgin Atlantic and British Airways flights to offer service from Antigua to the BVI two days per week on Fridays and Saturdays. LIAT announced daily flights between Tortola and San Juan, Puerto Rico, that provide convenient, same-day interline connections to New York, Newark and Orlando on JetBlue and United.

The expansion of the Cruise Pier in Tortola, where ships from several passenger lines make calls on their Caribbean itineraries, has been completed. Now, the BVI Ports Authority has turned its focus to the adjacent landside development, Tortola Pier Park. Several of the buildings are near completion and the park is expected to officially open before year’s end with amenities to include new places to dine and shop.

Festivals and Events

Planning is currently underway for the second annual BVI Food Fete, a series of culinary festivals and activities that highlight the flavors of the island group’s cuisine. The three signature events are:

* Taste of the BVI, to be hosted on Tortola and Virgin Gorda on November 7 and 21, respectively, will include chef demonstrations, mixologist competitions, sampling of various foods and restaurants, and more on both islands.

* The Barefoot Gourmet Soirée offers a five-course meal prepared by international and local chefs. The dinner is hosted at Peter Island Resort along a chic beach setting with live food stations featuring food prepared by each chef on November 14.

* The Anegada Lobster Festival is one of the most popular culinary events in the BVI where visitors can try the famous spiny lobster prepared in a variety of ways — grilled, jerked, curried, ceviche, broiled, stewed and more — and wash it all down with the BVI’s signature cocktail, The Painkiller. This two-day event is scheduled for November 28 and 29.

Anegada Beach Club’s new luxury beach tents include a king canopy bed, day bed and furnished deck.
Anegada Beach Club’s new luxury beach tents include a king canopy bed, day bed and furnished deck.

Another fun event is the Jost Van Dyke Bar Crawl, which introduces attendees to some of the most popular beach bars on the island where the aforementioned Painkiller was created. It takes place on November 6.

Scheduled for November 28 - December 3, the Necker Cup is a six-day/five-night, all-inclusive, Pro-Am Tennis event hosted by Sir Richard Branson on the BVI’s Necker Island. Participants are also offered the opportunity to engage in typical Necker Island activities such as paddle boarding, sailboat races, kiteboarding, wakeboarding, snorkeling, massage therapy, beach tennis, parties and more.

Turtle Encounters Program

Through a newly formed partnership between the Conservation and Fisheries Department (CFD) and the local non-profit Association of Reef Keepers (ARK), the BVI is offering a Turtle Encounters Program. It will give clients the opportunity to join ongoing efforts within the Wider Caribbean Sea Turtle Conservation Network.

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