Jamaica Honors Top U.S. Tour Operators With Blue Mountain Awards For Excellence In Service


Steve Dawson
Ruder Finn, Inc.
[email protected]


Kingston, Jamaica – November 14, 2005 — Jamaica celebrated the work of tour operators from the U.S. for their outstanding contribution to the development of the tourism industry at a ceremony on Saturday, October 29, 2005.

The Blue Mountain Awards were held at the Kings House in Kingston, Jamaica, under the distinguished patronage of His Excellency, the Most Honorable, Sir Howard Cooke, Governor General of Jamaica. Laurie Palumbo accepted a Blue Mountain Award on behalf of Liberty/GoGo Travel, Mike Norton accepted on behalf of Air Jamaica Vacations, Jeff Mullen accepted on behalf of Apple Vacations, Robert Cole accepted on behalf of Mark Travel Corporation, Steve Gorga accepted on behalf of Travel Impressions. MLT Vacations also won a Blue Mountain Award and Most Improved Tour Operator was awarded to Travelocity and was accepted by Carol Menzel.

“We are very proud to award these U.S. tour operators who continue to support the growth of Jamaica’s tourism product,” said Paul Pennicook, Director, Jamaica Tourist Board. “Tour operators are one of Jamaica’s key partners in the tourism business and we will continue to support and cultivate relationships to sustain not only our growth but theirs as well.”

Created in 1983, the Blue Mountain Awards are intended to recognize excellence in selling Jamaica. This year’s recipients were honored for the increase in business they generated from May 2004 to April 2005. Seven awards went to partners from the United States, two to Canadian partners, three to U.K. operators and one award to operators in Germany and Italy, respectively.

The Blue Mountain Awards have been offered on three previous occasions in 1983, 1990 and 1995. This year’s event was staged as one of the major activities to mark the 50th anniversary of the Jamaica Tourist Board and for the first time honored cruise operators and Jamaican innovators.

“As an island, Jamaica has a lot to offer the traveler, but without the relationships which have been established with our partners, our tourist industry would have not grown in the way it has,” said the Honorable Aloun N’Dombet Assamba, Minister of Industry and Tourism to those in attendance at the event.

Details of upcoming special events, attractions and accommodations in Jamaica are posted on the Jamaica Tourist Board’s Web site at www.visitjamaica.com. The Jamaica Tourist Board can be reached toll-free at 1-800-465-4624.