Tourism Minister, Dr. Ernest Hilaire, has praised the ‘fantastic work’ done by the Destang family for national development through the hospitality sector.
The Minister recently went on a tour of the Bay Gardens properties with Executive Director, Sanovnik Destang, as his guide.
“It was inspiring,” Hilaire stated in a post on his official Facebook page.
“ I could not disguise my admiration for the fantastic work that the Destangs have done for national development through the hospitality sector,” he stated.
The Minister described Managing Director, Mrs. Joyce Destang as ” one our most accomplished Saint Lucians.”
“Tell me, how many women in Saint Lucia have achieved what she has? More than Saint Lucia, how many in the Caribbean? And she keeps on going. I wish I could tell you her age but rest assured she is still in fine form,” the Castries South MP wrote.
He said he was most impressed with the Bay Gardens brand because it represent the finest example of the ‘indigenisation’ of the hospitality sector.
“ Here are some interesting facts : 240 staff (pre covid 340), 98% local, rest CARICOM. The MD and all GMs and 75% of all Heads of Department and supervisors are strong Caribbean women. These women leaders are fantastic professionals. 75% of staff are vaccinated and counting. No coercion, no mandates , no incentives given. According to Sanovnik, just love and preaching and education,” Hilaire disclosed.
“The future looks bright and the family is not slowing down. There are plans for expanding Bay Gardens Beach Resort and hopes to expand to the South. After all, Mrs. Destang is from Laborie! The next generation is even more ambitious and determined to grow the Bay Gardens brand into a premium brand,” the Minister, whose portfolios also include Investment, Creative Industries, Culture and Information, stated.
“Each success of Bay Gardens is a success for Saint Lucia. It is a statement of what we can achieve as Saint Lucians. It is a bold expression that Saint Lucians can become lead investors in our land and become guardians of our future prosperity,” Hilaire asserted.
The Destang family currently owns four properties and two villas, including the Bay Gardens Hotel which opened in 1995.