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Seychelles Tourism Board opens office in Johannesburg

The Seychelles Tourism Board has officially opened its new tourist office in Johannesburg

Opening ceremony
Opening ceremony
The Seychelles Tourism Board has officially opened its new tourist office in Johannesburg, South Africa, during a ceremony held in the city yesterday.
It was the Seychelles’ Minister for Tourism and Culture, Alain St.Ange, who opened the office and offered a toast to this occasion.
The Tourism Board now has two offices in South Africa – Cape Town and Johannesburg – with the latter having relocated from Pretoria where it operated for several years under the auspices of the Seychelles High Commission.
The office is now based in the heart of the travel and trade businesses in Johannesburg and is managed by Lena Hoareau who now looks after the South Africa market. Mrs Hoareau was formerly based in the United Kingdom as the PR manager for the tourism board.
Speaking at the ceremonial event held at the Saxon Hotel in Sandton, Minister St.Ange said there was a need to bring the office closer to the commercial heart of South Africa in order to gain a bigger market share of the South African market.
He told the audience which comprised of the Seychelles High Commissioner in South Africa, Mr Claude Morel, the Seychelles general consul for Johannesburg, Mrs Mare-Mai Kolsch, tour operators, airlines, press and other tourism related organisations such as RETOSA, that Seychelles is not only a friend of South Africa, but wanted to be the detonation of choice for South African holiday makers. "We are opening our Joburg Office because we believe that Africa must continue to work with Africa, and that Africa should know Africa if Africa is to be strong and claim its fair share of the world tourism market. Today we say to South Africans that we have adequate airline connectivity and you have a great holiday destination right on your door step. Our two countries are two friendly countries, our Governments get on and respect each other, it is now our people who should discover each other" said Minister St.Ange.
The Minister then proceeded to cut the ribbon in a symbolic gesture, together with High Commissioner Claude Morel, the CEO of the Seychelles Tourism Board Sherin Naiken, the tourism board’s Director for Africa and America David Germain and the new manager of the island's Joburg Office Lena Hoareau.
When addressing the guests earlier, Ms Naiken also said the office’s relocation to Johannesburg was one which was long overdue and that it had also been the request of various partners in the tourism industry.
She continued that despite all the economic difficulties which the country is experiencing at the moment, Seychelles still registered a growth on the market last year and that in itself is very encouraging for the Seychelles tourism industry as a whole.
“Our product still appeals to the South African visitors and because of this, we know very well, and we have also been reminded, that we need to be more visible on the market to fill in the knowledge gap,” she said, adding, “This is why it is important for us to maintain our presence on this market and why not move closer to where the actions are”.
She then thanked all partners who have worked with the tourism board to help develop the market to what it is today.
“We acknowledge that our success has been a collective effort and I know we still have a lot of untapped potential for this market,” she said.
She then officially welcomed the new manager, Mrs Hoareau, to her new position and thank Mr Germain who oversees the African market as a whole, and whose presence and hard work on this market over the years has been greatly appreciated.
Mrs Hoareau has on her part said that she was excited to be working on the South African market as it has loads of potentials for growth and she felt happy to be part of the team who are driving this market to a new level.
“Coming from a market as aggressive as UK where travel trade is concerned, I want to bring some of my knowledge and experience to this market and apply the strategies that would work for us. A lot of work has already been done on this market and we now need to keep driving the trade and consumers in order to grow the numbers from South Africa and Africa as a whole,” she said.
The event also included a presentation of gift to the representative of RETOSA, Mr Kwakye Donkor.
The office is now fully operational with Mrs Hoareau having already taken up position since late last year. The office’s address is: 1st Floor, 280 Oak Avenue, Randburg, Johannesburg.

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