Marriott named leading hotel 2005

World Travel Awards has awarded the Grand Cayman Marriott Beach Resort with the title of ‘Grand Cayman’s Leading Hotel’ for 2005. This is the second year that the resort has been presented with this award by voting travel professionals from around the globe.

‘We are delighted that the resort has been rewarded for the strides it has made in guest service, product improvements, value for money and the overall resort experience,’ Mr. Chris Sariego, Managing Director of the Grand Cayman Marriott Beach Resort, said. ‘Earning the title of Grand Cayman’s Leading Hotel for the second year running is an honour.’

A press release outlines that the World Travel Awards is a premier global awards event aimed at promoting excellence in the travel and tourism industry. Every year since 1993, it has gathered and reported on the opinions of travel professionals in various categories including ‘World’s Leading Airline’, ‘World’s Leading All-inclusive Company’ and ‘World’s Family Luxury Resort’. These categories are broken down for country and continent sections, the release says.

‘Nominations are based on the previous year’s voting and this year 156,000 travel professionals in over 140 countries were asked to choose their leading travel destinations, airlines, hotels and companies around the world via an online voting form.’

The press release also says that criteria involved in the evaluation of nominees include scope of distribution, convenience and overall best services. The voting started in May and ended in September with the awards announced at the gala ceremony in November 2005.

‘The resort has overhauled all its areas of operation and standards from the food and beverage service to the thread count in the bed sheets. It is very gratifying to the staff for the resort to receive the World Travel Award because it shows that all the hard work has paid off,’ Mr Sariego said.

World Travel Awards reports that its awards have come to be recognized by travel professionals and discerning travellers as one of the best endorsements that a travel product can receive, says the release.

Major renovations

The Marriott Resort recently underwent a massive $15 million renovation, re-model and upgrade, which included full re-model of the guest rooms and suites, an expansion of the meeting rooms, new décor throughout the resort, a re-build of the spa and dive shop, the expansion of the fitness area and an upgrade of the food and beverage outlets.

‘The guest rooms’ new décor is reminiscent of the sugar plantation heyday with its modern interpretation of dark wood furniture highlighted by fabrics in light tones of gold and green. 300-thread count triple sheeting, high-speed wireless Internet, bathrobes, personal safe, hair dryer, iron and coffee maker are now standard in all guest rooms.

‘Guests have a wide choice of food and beverage options, which include the gourmet oceanfront restaurant, Solana on Seven Mile Beach, the casual Red Parrot Restaurant, beachside Sol Bar and the lobby bar, Balboa’s Lounge. The restaurants’ menus and atmosphere have been re-worked to appeal to a variety of tastes and to offer an escape from the ordinary,’ said the release.

‘The menu of services is enviable and includes such unique features as the couple’s room with a Jacuzzi and a cabana to accommodate outdoor massages,’ Mr Sariego said of the new La Mer Spa. ‘We are particularly delighted with this addition of luxury to the resort.’

Expanded to 4,500 square feet, the Orchid Ballroom has the ability to accommodate up to 550 people with generous pre-function space. The newly re-designed and redecorated space can be adapted to suit mostly any type of function. On-site catering and meeting planning staff are available to assist in producing a successful event or meeting.

In addition to the refurbishment, the staff have been re-trained and re-tooled to provide superior customer service. ‘Most of our staff is Caymanian and we are pleased to have them on board as professionals in their fields and as representatives of the Caymanian people,’ Mr Sariego said.

‘Incorporating much of the Caymanian culture and history into the guest experience, such as our local artwork showcase in our public areas and the re-population of the turtle pond with local Hickatees, is high on our priority list. And we will continue to support and showcase Cayman, as it is goal to provide our guests with an authentic Caymanian resort vacation,’ Mr Sariego said.

‘Travel professionals voted us ‘Grand Cayman’s Leading Hotel’ because of the resort’s ability to deliver excellent service and maintain top standards. It is our promise to stay on top of the resort market in Grand Cayman and continue to be a leader in the tourism industry in the Cayman Islands,’ Mr. Sariego said.

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