It was a full house as the Cuba Tourist Board and its partners welcomed travel agents to an appreciation evening at Toronto’s iconic Palais Royale 16NOV.
The lakeside venue, known for its art deco appeal, lent an air of old-style charm perfect to a Cuban-style evening. Some 250 were in attendance including Cuba Tourist Board personnel, tour operators, hotel sales personnel and agents.
With the theme echoed in its current ad campaign Cuba Unica (unique), the event featured live music from an authentically-Cuban band, young dancers from a Cuban-owned Toronto dance studio, and a few moves on the dancefloor by happy attendees.
Referring to the island’s appeal thanks to its friendly people and stunning beaches, Director of the Cuba Tourist Board Lessner Gomez shared some interesting statistics with the crowd. For the first 10 months of the year, the island welcomed almost 2 million visitors, with Canadians totalling almost 750,000, or 38%. The goal for the year is a million Canadians.
Air capacity for this coming winter season is up 12% YoY with a whopping than 5,000+ flights to the island from an impressive 21 airport across Canada.
And what are all those Canadians looking forward to? According to psychographics supplied by the Board: engaging with the locals; feeling safe when they leave their resort, day or night; and enjoying cultural immersion.
News that WiFi is available and free at all resorts was received with appreciative applause by the audience, as was the announcement that the island is stabilizing its supply of food and beverage thanks to increasing cargo from Canada and boosted import deals directly by the hotel chains. Lessner also enumerated the significant hotel openings throughout the island.
All in all a lovely evening to kick off the winter 23/24 season in Cuba Unica!