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WTTC announces winners of 2019 Tourism for Tomorrow Awards


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The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) has announced the 2019 leaders in sustainable tourism at the Tourism for Tomorrow Awards ceremony. 

The Awards, now in their 15th year, took place at a special ceremony during the WTTC Global Summit in Seville, Spain, to celebrate inspirational, world-changing tourism initiatives from around the globe. 

The 2019 WTTC Tourism for Tomorrow Award Winners are highly commended and recognised for business practices of the highest standards that balance the needs of ‘people, planet and profits’ within the Travel and Tourism sector. 

The 2019 winners promote inclusive growth and illustrate a strong commitment to supporting change and transformation in business practices and consumer behaviour towards a more environmentally conscious sector. 

The winners of the 2019 Tourism for Tomorrow Awards are as follows.

 

  • Climate Action Award – Bucuti & Tara Beach Resort, Aruba 
  • Investing in People Award – Lemon Tree Hotels Limited, India   
  • Destination Stewardship Award – St. Kitts Sustainable Destination Council, St. Kitts and Nevis 
  • Social Impact Award – Awamaki, Peru 
  • Changemakers Award – SEE Turtles, USA 

The Awards are judged by a panel of independent experts, led by University of Surrey Executive Dean and Professor of Sustainability in Business Prof. Graham Miller. 

The panel included academics, business leaders, NGO and governmental representatives who narrowed down the list of 183 applications to just 15 finalists. 

The three-stage judging process included a thorough review of all applications, followed by onsite evaluations of the finalists and their initiative. 

The winner of each category was determined by the WTTC Tourism for Tomorrow Awards 2019 Winners’ Selection Committee, chaired by Just a Drop Founder and Chairman Fiona Jeffery OBE, and composed of Travel and Tourism Sector Global Hospitality Non-Executive Director and Strategic Advisory Wolfgang M. Neumann; Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health Akira Yamaguchi Professor of Environmental Health and Human Habitation John Spengler; and World Bank Global Tourism Team Senior Private Sector Specialist Louise Twining-Ward. WTTC represents the global private sector of Travel and Tourism. Its Global Summit is the most important event in the sector worldwide each year. 

WTTC President and CEO Gloria Guevara commented: “The finalists in this year’s Tourism for Tomorrow Awards showcase the many ways in which our industry is dedicated to sustainable growth. In 2018, the Travel and Tourism sector contributed 10.4% of global GDP and supported 319 million jobs across the world. It is therefore essential that we continue to grow in the most sustainable and responsible way possible. The new award categories for this year are aligned with WTTC strategic priorities and illustrate that all members of this industry play a key role in driving the sector forward to a more responsible future. I congratulate them all on their fantastic accomplishments and leadership.” 

Fiona Jeffery OBE said: “The aim of the WTTC Tourism for Tomorrow Awards is to showcase some of the most exceptional examples of sustainable tourism practices in the world, and inspire and encourage our industry to make a positive impact for both current and future generations. Over 15 years, we have seen the industry make great strides towards achieving these goals and we can see positive change happening. Our recent survey results show that 67% of travellers would consider a travel company’s sustainability agenda when booking a trip, whilst 48% of travellers would now pay more money to travel sustainably. Whilst there is still more to be done, we must harness the momentum for change to protect the product that sustains our very own industry.” 

AIG Travel President and CEO Jeff Rutledge, Headline Sponsor of the Awards, stated: “From socially-inclusive employment initiatives to establishing one of the first rewinding projects in the Philippines, this year’s WTTC Tourism for Tomorrow Awards finalists have proved to be an incredibly diverse group of changemakers from around the world. They have demonstrated that, regardless of the size or purpose of business, all members of the Travel and Tourism industry can afford to make sustainability a priority, and become part of our collective journey towards a greener future.”

The Bicester Village Shopping Collection Chief Culture Office and Social Enterprise ‘Brides do Good’ Founder Chantal Khoueiry added: “Social impact is not a choice, it affects each and everyone of us both in our personal lives and through our businesses. The combination of small things done with great love can become great things with a sustained impact for generations to come. We have the power to transform intentions into actions. Let’s stop intending. Let’s start doing!”

The full list of winners and finalists are as follows. 

Climate Action Award, for organisations undertaking significant and measurable work to reduce the scale and impact of climate change:

 

  • Winner: Bucuti & Tara Beach Resort, Aruba 
  • Finalist: The Brando, Tetiaroa Private Island, French Polynesia 
  • Finalist: Tourism Holdings Limited, New Zealand 
  • Investing in People Award, for organisations demonstrating leadership in becoming an exciting, attractive, and equitable employer in the sector: 
  • Winner: Lemon Tree Hotels Limited, India 
  • Finalist: Reserva do Ibitipoca, Brazil 
  • Finalist: Shanga by Elewana Collection, Tanzania 
  • Destination Stewardship Award, for organisations helping a place to thrive and bring forward its unique identity for the benefit of its residents and tourists: 
  • Winner: St. Kitts Sustainable Destination Council, St. Kitts and Nevis 
  • Finalist: Grupo Rio da Prata, Jardim and Bonito, Brazil 
  • Finalist: Masungi Georeserve, Philippines 
  • Social Impact Award, for organisations working to improve the people and places where they operate: 
  • Winner: Awamaki, Peru 
  • Finalist: Intrepid Group, Australia 
  • Finalist: Nikoi Island, Indonesia 
  • Changemakers Award, this year focused on organisations fighting the illegal wildlife trade through sustainable tourism: 
  • Winner: SEE Turtles, USA 
  • Finalist: Kelompok Peduli Lingkungan Belitung (KPLB), Indonesia 
  • Finalist: The Cardamom Tented Camp, Cambodia

 

Award categories

The categories for which awards were given are as follows.

  • Security and Seamless Travel Experience which recognises leadership in transforming border security and the traveller experience through the use of technology and facial recognition systems
  • Infrastructure Investment which recognises leadership in infrastructure development and readiness. Resilience which recognises leadership by a country which has demonstrated success in recovery from adverse events 
  • Social Impact which recognises leadership in enabling gender equality and diversity; engaging local communities and making the sector more attractive for future generations 
  • Destination Stewardship which recognises leadership in for the work undertaken to overcome seasonality as a way of improving the year-round tourism experience 
  • Crisis Preparedness, Management and Recovery which recognises leadership in disaster preparedness and having effective response systems at both national and local levels 
  • Innovation and Technology which recognises leadership by a country which has demonstrated success in recovery from adverse events 

 


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