Cayman’s underwater wonders were on display in Las Vegas as the islands’ dive industry marketed itself to the world.
Tourism officials, dive operators, photographers and publishers descended on Sin City for the Diving Equipment and Marketing Association’s 2014 trade show.
Local operators were exhibiting in the Cayman Islands pavilion at the international dive industry event at the Las Vegas Convention Center.
Tourism chiefs say scuba diving vacations are a big part of the island’s tourism product. The Department of Tourism spends around 6 percent of its annual marketing budget specifically on dive tourism.
“The DEMA show is our major business to business show, we are contracting dive groups for the year and we are here to ensure we shore up business for 2015 and continue to maintain key dive relationships,” said Director of Tourism Rosa Harris in a video statement from Nevada earlier this week.
Keith Sahm, general manager of Sunset House, said the business had representatives at the show every year.
He said the Cayman Islands pavilion looked spectacular and garnered a lot of attention.
“Scuba Diving has long had a value to this country GDP and DEMA, being the largest scuba related industry show in the world is exactly where the Cayman Islands needs to show off this world class commodity.”
Sarah-Jane Whitehill, of Red Sail Sports, said the show was a good opportunity to seek new business and collaborate with dive industry partners.
Alongside the exhibits, the show features seminars from industry experts on topics, including marine conservation, dive safety and marketing and demonstrations of new dive and photography gear.
Pinnacle Media’s Key to Cayman magazine was also exhibited, with the latest copy of the tourism-focused publication distributed at the show.
The magazine’s ambassador Ron Kipp said it was a popular display and all the copies disappeared quickly.