For the 10th year, Anne Erickson, director of insurance sales for Boca Resorts, Inc., hosted her All Girls Meeting Planner Weekend at one of the Boca properties: the Boca Raton Resort & Club in Boca Raton, Fla. Anne and the group set sail for an evening of offshore networking.
A Jammin' Fam, Mon The new Ritz-Carlton, Rose Hall is not only open but represents a renaissance for the island nation of Jamaica. While new to the island, the Ritz-Carlton, Rose Hall ownership is local to Jamaica and brings not only the distinctiveness of the Ritz-Carlton product, but also decor and appointments reflecting the beauty and zest for color of the destination.
This zest is also apparent in the service displayed by "ladies and gentlemen serving ladies and gentlemen." Staff smiles are contagious and genuine.
A three-day September program at the resort was a follow-up for some planners who had visited during a hard-hat trip last spring. Those returning were among 28 planners joined by a like number of Ritz-Carlton associates, along with representatives from the Jamaica Tourist Board and Jamaican DMCs.
The business program included presentations by Jim Veil, Ritz-Carlton's regional vice president, and Jim Schultenover, vice president of sales and, along with Doug Brooks, general manager of the new resort. Their combined message covered the growth of Ritz-Carlton organization, with a focus on the Caribbean and the specific mission of the Rose Hall in Jamaica. Along with the company's growth, they emphasized, is a continued focus on quality service.
Other highlights included bullet points on Project Ritz-Carlton, the company's 10-year plan, planner cellphones for on-site assistance, certification of local vendors in Ritz-Carlton locations, vendor training provided by Ritz-Carlton, and in-room motion sensors to determine occupancy. Theo Gilbert-Jamison, vice president of leadership development, shared insights into the Ritz-Carlton Learning Institute at the Leadership Center in Atlanta. Programs available to outside companies at the institute include Leadership, Legendary Service, and Executive Development.
Dennis Tucker, American Airlines, updated the group on new equipment coming online, expanded space in coach cabins, and more flights into both Hawaii and the Caribbean.
Bob Joselyn, Joselyn, Tepper & Associates, conducted an interactive session in which attendees produced, on paper and with local talent, video presentations selling the attributes of Jamaica's newest resort. The creativity and quality of the projects were a surprise to planners and partners alike--and to those recruited from the Rose Hall staff to assist.
Tracey Fentem, Rose Hall's director of marketing, kept the attendees and presenters in step with the agenda while allowing time for enjoyment of the facility and surrounding venues. Any great resort needs to be seen in relationship to its surroundings. The White Witch golf course, owned and operated by Ritz-Carlton; the Rose Hall Great House; Martha Brae River Rafting; Dunn's River Falls; and Rose Hall Beach Club all add to the impact of the Jamaican destination. The clubhouse at the White Witch course is a venue in itself. With Montego Bay airport less than a half-hour's drive away, duty-free shopping and Jamaican crafts abundantly available, the destination and the resort beg a virtual site visit at www.ritzcarlton.com.