Sandals thanks red caps for their service to tourism industry
SANDALS Resorts International (SRI), in a show of appreciation of the invaluable contribution that red cap porters make to the tourism product, hosted a special cocktail and dinner in their honour recently.
The event, hosted at Sandals Montego Bay, was the brainchild of Donald Smith, vice-president airport and transportation at SRI, who started the tradition some 15 years ago.
“We value the support and partnership with our porters. They play a great role in helping to make the arrival process for our guests, who use their services, as seamless as possible. We will continue to work closely together and are committed to always honouring their contributions to the industry,” said Smith.
Last year was extra special for the porters as it signalled the resurgence of the amazing initiative which was on a brief pause due to COVID constraints.
Porters along with their guests revelled in the entertainment and culinary offerings of the five-star resort as company leaders thanked them for a successful 2023 and for their constant support.
For more than two decades, Sandals and the Red Cap Porters Association have enjoyed an efficient collaboration implemented by Donald Smith, that continues to benefit all parties involved.
“The tourism sector is moving at advanced pace as stop over arrivals steadily increase year after year. Jamaica is projected to record more than 4.1 million visitor arrivals for 2023 and every member of the industry, whether directly or indirectly linked, contributes to these successes.
“Our red cap porters are a part of that welcome committee that greets our guests first as they arrive on island. They play a massive role in ensuring a great start to their visit and honouring the service they provide daily is paramount,” said Sandals’ Executive Chairman Adam Stewart.
In the meantime president of the Sangster International Airport-based Montego Bay Red Cap Porters Association, Hopeton Burnett, expressed his thanks to the industry leader who, he shared, has been an amazing partner.
“Sandals has always looked out for us. They are the only hotel chain that has ever given back to us in this way. Not only have we been hosted at events such as this where we get to bring our guests and enjoy a special event held in our honour, but we have benefited from complimentary weekend stays, day passes, dinner passes at Sandals and many other things they’ve done to say thank you to us. We also work very closely with the Sandals and Beaches Airport Desk to take care of arriving passengers.
“I want to use this opportunity to express our sincere gratitude to Sandals and wish them continued success. The dinner was amazing, we had our own bar, the meals served were delicious, the entertainment was on point and it was yet another year of good vibes with the Sandals family,” said Burnett.
Fellow red cap porter Horetta Barrett shared that her evening was packed with enjoyment, “Everything was incredible. Sandals is like family. We have always received appreciation from them and the love and respect goes both ways.”
Otis Myles, treasurer and director of the association, also had similar sentiments, “I have been with the association for 18 years and since then I have witnessed the amazing relationship between us and Sandals. Mr Butch Stewart, the late Sandals chairman, Don Smith and Adam Stewart made it known that they valued our services. To them we are ‘cappies’ who should always be looked after. We in turn look after the guests when they arrive. Sandals for us is the best hotel chain, hands down”.