PORT ST. MAARTEN – Port St. Maarten and the destination are ready for the 2019 Florida-Caribbean Cruise Association (FCCA) Platinum Associate Membership Advisory Council (PAMAC) meeting that will take place from June 12-15.
As cruise executives and PAMAC Platinum members touch down throughout Tuesday, cruise line executives after their arrival on the island will take time out to be part of a panel discussion in the format of a townhall meeting on Tuesday, from 5.00pm to 7.00pm at the Port St. Maarten Homeporting Pavillion, at the Dr. A.C. Wathey Cruise and Cargo Facilities in Point Blanche.
Tuesday’s townhall meeting is for business owners, managers who are working and entrepreneurs who are considering starting a business in the cruise or land-based tourism field.
Cruise line executives will be available to share a wealth of information about industry developments and how the destination can further capitalize on the cruise sector.
This year’s St. Maarten PAMAC brings together 200 Platinum Members of the FCCA and 20 high-ranking FCCA Member Line cruise executives and top Chief Executive Officers (CEOs), who will be working together in continuing to build and expand the mutually beneficial business relationship that exists between the stakeholders.
“Two discussion points that come to mind that will be on the minds of Platinum Members and cruise line executives during their four-day stay on the island are authentic destination experiences and the U.S. Government’s renewed restrictions on travel to Cuba.
“Local people and local experiences have become the biggest draw for cruise travellers and this we know based on surveys and St. Maarten scored 9.3 out of 10 for cruise passenger destination experience. This is something that we need to continue to build upon. Culture -food, music, dance, arts and crafts – and people are the key selling points and each destination offers something unique where this is concerned. In order for our destination to continue to compete within the region, we need to develop more authentic experiences for our guests.
“The U.S. State Department announced last week that it would no longer permit visits to Cuba via passenger and recreational vessels and this includes cruise ships and yachts. Cruise lines who already had set itineraries will now have to offer passengers alternative ports of call and Caribbean destinations will be vying for this business as the industry looks for solutions.
“We look forward to welcoming cruise line executives and Platinum Members to the island on Tuesday and providing them with some ‘Friendly Island’ hospitality as they explore the destination over the next three-days,” Port St. Maarten Management said on Monday.
The PAMAC conferences give FCCA Executives and destination leaders the opportunity to dialogue directly with each other. While traditional conventions are “fast-paced”, the Platinum events create an atmosphere for closer networking and give the Cruise executives the opportunity to explore the new offerings from the host destinations.
On Wednesday, Thursday and Friday a number of meetings, receptions (Wednesday and Friday Dutch side, Thursday, French side) will take place along with various tours allowing cruise executives and PAMAC Platinum Members to experience the St. Maarten Recovery during the past 20-months and rediscover the destination.
Sonesta Maho Beach Resort, Casino & Spa is the conference hotel where the PAMAC guests will be staying.
The PAMAC event is one of many that the FCCA coordinates for its Platinum Members and Member Lines to stay at the forefront of information about both the industry and destinations while finding ways to maximise the benefits for all.
The FCCA is a not-for-profit trade organisation composed of 19 Member Lines operating over 100 vessels in Floridian, the Caribbean and Latin American waters.
PHOTO: Port St. Maarten