From riding a donkey to driving a Bimmer
On Wednesday, Eugennie Minto will be in Madrid, Spain receiving the Spanish Publishing House/Trade Leaders Club Golden Trophy - an award for excellence in hospitality.
Minto, owner of Hotel Glorianna in Montego Bay, is justifiably proud as it has been a long road from her days of riding a donkey to sell her wares in the market to owning a hotel.
"I have been blessed," said Minto, who has written an autobiography called 'From Gloria to Glorianna.' "God has been lavish in his goodwill towards me.
I've been gifted with seven children - five with my husband - who are now all grown up and doing well, and the magnificient outpouring of support from my mother, Miss Mimi, who assisted me with them all through the years. So many, many memories. Good and bad - but so much to be thankful for."
In her book, Minto describes her growth from a naive teenaged country girl from remote Coopershop District, St James, to selling oranges as a higgler in Montego Bay, then having children and struggling to cope as a battered spouse. There were many heartaches as she was swindled several times in her bid to succeed in different business endeavours.
Ten years ago, however she got a loan to start the 75-room hotel and the rest is history. "I built it from scratch!" she said. "But, I got a lot of help. Part of the land was airport (Sangster International) swamp. So many people dissauded me. So many people encouraged me.
I simply followed my instinct, went ahead - and put my all into trying to operate a good small hotel from the travelling people of the world, and for my own Jamaicans."