The television ads always end with an instruction to ‘visit your local travel agent’ for more information. On Thursday 4 September, Grenada welcomed the first of 149 travel agents from Boston, USA whose 7–hour experience impacted them so deeply, that they are all set on selling Sandals LaSource to the thousands of clients within their database.
“I was knocked out by the welcome, wowed by the tour of the property. I am definitely going to recommend this property to my existing clients and new ones,” said travel consultant, Allyson Tambeau of Travel Leaders which is independently owned and operated by Travel Solutions.
“When you look at the property from the top of the hill on arrival, it’s just one magnificent sight. We were welcomed with drumming and that festival feelings get you excited to be on vacation. That was just wonderful and the level of service we experienced is just excellent. Great!”
For Anna Isperduli who is also with Travel Leaders, the visit took her down memory lane of wonderful and positive memories of first visiting the island on a cruise ship years ago. “This is not my first time here. I first visited and again had limited experience sometime back on a cruise ship. This is a very beautiful place, it reminds of the place I grew up in Istanbul. This place is just ideal for a vacation, it’s easy to get around,” she said.
Integral to the wow feeling for the ladies were the fact the property is not reflective of a concrete jungle, but a place filled with trees. “The vegetation adds so much more to the property. This creates a sense of consciousness, all over the property are different types of vegetation,” said Tambeau as she recall seeing a banana tree next to a room she inspected and enquired, “is it that way all over the island?”
“I will be selling this to my existing Sandals clients who have being to other properties and are looking to take another vacations, as well as all new clients. This property will be recommended to them,” she said.
For Mia Webster of EZtravel4me, the property is one that meets all the requirements for her clients looking for adventure vacation within an environment that is filled with peace but can bring out the hidden energy for exploration. “Though it’s a short stay here, I had a great time from the welcome to the departure, I will definitely recommend this property to my clients. Sandals is living up to its promises in the brochures and what you see and get on arrival is just beyond the imagination,” she said.
Webster’s clientele are not just couples wanting to take a short or long vacation. “I do a lot of groups. Just imagine the possibilities with groups using this wonderful place with great food mixed with adventures and peaceful space,” she said. “Sandals LaSource in Grenada is definitely top on my list of recommendations, because I experienced it and can speak to them based on my experience here,” she said.
Though the property is high on their list, the travel agents identified one challenge that, once fixed, they are all of the opinion that Grenada will have a new market to tap into where thousands are always awaiting adventure. “I offer my services to persons primarily in the Boston area and at present getting to Grenada from there means travelling to Miami or New York. They will definitely prefer to have a direct flight out of Boston, so you fix that problem and I will work wonders,” Tambeau said.
Grenada was the last stop for the agents who also visited Sandals property in The Bahamas and Turks and Caicos Islands as part of the Sandals Mega Familiarisation experience that will see almost 3,000 travel agents visiting various Sandals property between 4 September and 23 November. “There will be 20 trips and Grenada will receive 16 visits with each of those trips having between 149 to 200 plus travel agents,” said Andre Wade, Sandals Industrial Relations Manager who is based in Miami. He was among Sandals representatives aboard the flight with the travel agents.
By Linda Straker