Chief Executive Officer of Tourism Trinidad, Kurtis Rudd, canoes on one of the lakes on Hacienda Jacana. (Image courtesy Tourism Trinidad Limited)

Tourism Trinidad Limited (TTL), led by its recently appointed Chief Executive Officer Kurtis Rudd, has embarked on a series of “door-to-door” hotel and sites and attractions visits, as part of efforts to get a clear picture of the pandemic’s impact on the sector.

According to an official TTL statement:

“The intention is to get an understanding of the quality of the accommodation and tourist sites that are available in Trinidad, hear about stakeholders’ plans, and learn more about their challenges and opportunities as the local tourism industry strives to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.”

On Friday 22 July 2022, the tourism team led by TTL CEO Kurtis Rudd, toured Hacienda Jacana, a nature resort which is located on a 22-acre organic citrus estate in the Talparo forest.  The release the team was able to experience for themselves the attractions offered by the resort, and viewed new innovations put in place.

L to R – Chief Executive Officer of Tourism Trinidad, Kurtis Rudd, meets with the owner of Hacienda Jacana Vincent Quesnel and General Manager Allister Nanan. (Image courtesy Ministry of Tourism, Culture & the Arts)

“It is envisaged that these series of visits will assist Tourist Trinidad in building a stronger public-private partnership in moving our tourism sector forward,” said Kurtis Rudd, TTL CEO.

“Tourism exists in our communities, and it is critical that Tourism Trinidad dedicates quality time interacting with its partners and the people of the island to better understand challenges and constraints faced,” he explained. 

Facilitating the TTL delegation’s tour of the Hacienda Jacana eco resort were the owner, Vincent Quesnel, and the property’s General Manager and environmentalist, Allister Nanan.

“Hacienda Jacana had seen an upsurge of business since the COVID-19 pandemic. With the subsequent border restrictions and the closure of the Asa Wright Nature Resort, citizens have been showing tremendous interest in the facility,” Winston Nanan reported.

He added: “We have also started a 12-day bird watching tour with leading USA tour operator Caligo Ventures/Naturalist Journeys, under the leadership of Peg Abbott, that is really bearing significant fruit. Moreover, this tour package incorporates several other smaller hotels, so the benefits are spread even wider. These properties are Mt Plaisir in Grande Riviere, Cuffie River Nature Retreat and Blue Waters Inn in Tobago and Pax Guest House in Mt. St. Benedict.”

One of the cabins at Hacienda Jacana. (Image courtesy Ministry of Tourism, Culture & the Arts)

And the owner of Hacienda Jacana, Vincent Quesnel, pointed out that they have tapped into the sustainable travel ethos of the day.

“Our country haven is benefitting from today’s international travel’s preference for sustainable travel and increasing interest in health and wellness, as all the four-cottages are made from Greenheart timber sourced in Guyana.  The furnishings have been custom made in Trinidad.  The art pieces on the cottage walls are also local and all the cottages are named after birds that can be found on this piece of paradise—Gallinule, Lapwing, Nightjar and Woodrail,” he said.

“Indeed, at Hacienda Jacana, over 100 bird’s species can be seen and the only sounds you hear are from nature,” he boasted.

The Tourism Trinidad Team, led by CEO Kurtis Rudd, will continue the series of tours to sites and attractions and accommodation properties.