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Newsletter of the Tourism Industry Association of Newfoundland and Labrador

SPRING 2016 The Honourable Bardish Chagger, Minister of Small Business and Tourism, addresses delegates at Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador’s 2016 Annual Conference and Trade Show held March 1-3 in St. John’s

Your Provincial Tourism Industry Association Tourism Times is a quarterly publication of Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador. Opinions expressed by contributers and advertisers do not necessarily represent those of Hospitality NL.

Hospitality NL Board of Directors Dion Finlay Scott Hillyer Colleen Kennedy Darlene Thomas Terence Hickey Steve Denty Joe O’Brien Rex Avery Wayne Hallett Jerry Byrne Larry Laite

Chair Vice-Chair Secretary/Treasurer Director Director Director Director Past Chair Bed & Breakfast Association Restaurant Association Hotel/Motel Association

(Full board contact information available at

Staff Listing Craig Foley Chief Executive Officer Juanita Ford Manager, Workforce and Industry Development Leslie Rossiter Manager, Policy and Communications Karen So Accountant Melissa Ennis Technology Coordinator Susie Greene Membership Coordinator

Head Office

71 Goldstone Street (Suite 102) St. John’s, NL A1B 5C3 Tel: (709) 722-2000 Toll Free: 1-800-563-0700

Desktop Layout

Image 4 Digital Printing & Design Inc. 1170 Topsail Road, Mount Pearl, NL A1N 5E8 T: 709-747-3850 E: W:

Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador, established in 1983, is a non-profit membership association that leads, supports, represents and enhances the province’s tourism industry. Hospitality NL has been the voice of the provincial tourism industry since the association was founded. Its work on behalf of members and the industry itself has played a crucial role in developing the tourism industry into the flourishing economic driver that it is today. Hospitality NL is focused on advocacy, education, the adaptation of innovative technology and the promotion of a strong member network. Through forward thinking and fostering the growth of its members, Hospitality NL continues to be the leader of the tourism industry in the province.


Hospitality NL believes that the industry’s sustainability for future generations is of utmost important. The preservation of our province’s natural and cultural integrity, and the economic sustainability of our businesses and organizations are vital to this end.


Hospitality NL recognizes, respects and responds to the diverse needs of our rural and urban members operating various types of businesses and organizations.


Hospitality NL believes that our environment is our most valuable tourism asset and an essential component of the tourism industry’s future. We are dedicated to the sustainable development of our natural and cultural resources and the protection of our environment.


Hospitality NL believes technology is an enabler. We encourage and support our members in the integration of technology to support their growth and profitability.


Hospitality NL is committed to assisting our members, regardless of where they are located, to obtain the resources and tools they require.


Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador is supported by the tourism industry and

Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador, the voice of tourism, provides leadership and direction for the sustainability and growth of the tourism industry.

For over 40 Years a leader in Event Technology Audio Visual Trade Shows Simultaneous Interpretation Sound and Lighting systems 3D Renderings and Floor Plans 24 Hour Support 7 Days a Week 5th Consecutive Year

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709 722 0864

My first CEO message...while I know what I would like to say, those that know me well know I would be more inclined to use Skype or Twitter to share my thoughts but, here I go... The first thing I want to share with the members and partners of Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador is how incredibly

honored I am to have been presented this new opportunity and I assure you, I will give my all in my new capacity as CEO of Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador. I have worked in the tourism industry for more than fifteen years, and throughout that time, I have had the privilege to work with some of the most talented and innovative entrepreneurs in our province. I am proud of the collaborative relationships I have helped foster with tourism stakeholders and I am looking forward to building upon those relationships so that tourism operators in every corner of our province can benefit from the rewards achieved when all partners commit to working together. I thought it was very fitting that this edition of Tourism Times was scheduled for distribution during Volunteer Week. Thanks to tireless volunteers who lend their time and talents at festivals and events, on committees and Boards, and in countless other ways too numerous to list, our provincial tourism industry is growing. Volunteers make up the Board of Hospitality NL, the regional Destination Management Organizations and the NL Tourism Board and I am looking forward to working closely with them, and the HNL team, to ensure continued

growth of our industry and the delivery of high quality services and experiences that can only be found here drawing travelers from around the world. Finally, I wish to extend an invitation to the members of Hospitality NL to contact me with their feedback, comments, ideas, or just to say hello and let me know how the season is going! The support I have received since the announcement of my new role with HNL has been tremendous and I truly appreciate it. Without a doubt, it is the people working in this industry that have kept me working in this industry. I am excited about the future ahead and while I acknowledge our province is facing some difficult times ahead, tourism is a bright spot that can help build more diverse and sustainable communities and create good jobs, all while maintaining our heritage and culture of which we are, and should be, so very proud.

Craig Foley CEO, Hospitality NL @craigfoleyHNL


Charging Straight Ahead

Five years ago, when I first joined the Board of Directors of Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador, I did not do so with the intent of becoming Chair, in fact, the idea did not enter my mind. Yet, fast forward ahead a few years and here I am, presenting my first message in that very role. To say that volunteering on the Board of HNL has influenced me, and the path forward for my business, is an understatement.

With the start of that first year, when I represented the Bed and Breakfast sector, I quickly realized that I was surrounded by an incredible amount of expertise that was rivalled only by passion for the tourism industry. While the perspective differed, the collective commitment to grow tourism in Newfoundland and Labrador did not and I soon realized that Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador and its network was so much more than I thought it was. My early experience volunteering on the Board was incredibly helpful to me and my business. I was given thought provoking advice and learned so much from my fellow Board colleagues and members of HNL. I gained valuable insight in critical areas that helped me grow and develop my business and I am incredibly excited to pay it forward! There are many priority issues impacting the growth and development of our industry and I am keen to hit the ground running. My first year as Chair coincides with a recent change in leadership at Hospitality NL, namely, the appointment of Craig Foley as Chief Executive Officer and I know I can safely speak for him as well when I say a key initiative of the year ahead includes building

upon our existing collaborative partnerships, as well as adding new ones, to ensure those priority issues are addressed. Paramount to successfully addressing any issue is feedback from our members and I would like to take this platform to encourage both members and nonmembers of Hospitality NL to reach out to us and learn how we can work better together to grow our industry and ensure the business needs of tourism operators are met. I have had the privilege of working closely with the Past Chair, Mr. Rex Avery, and I would like to thank him for his incredible dedication to Hospitality NL, its members, and growing our provincial tourism industry. Rex leaves big shoes to fill and while my style may be different, I assure you I am looking forward to the challenge. There may be uncertain times ahead but the tourism industry, and your industry association, are resilient and nimble enough to not only stay the course, but charge straight ahead.

Dion Finlay Chair, Hospitality NL @HNLChair



Initial Thoughts



Owner, The Leaside Group What is your favorite aspect of your job? I love working with a dedicated team to create one of a kind experiences and memories for our guests. What is the biggest issue you feel the tourism industry needs to focus on? The economic crisis and difficult business conditions facing businesses; furthermore, how we continue to provide and develop quality products, services and experiences during these challenging fiscal times. Why did you run for Hospitality NL’s Board of Directors? I have always found incredible value in being an active member of the tourism industry association and the connections and business expertise I have gained as a result. I wanted to join the Board to contribute and help ensure the successful and sustainable development of tourism in Newfoundland and Labrador.



Owner/Operator, Bonne Bay Inn & Seaside Suites


What is your favorite aspect of your job? Meeting people from all over the world and chatting to them about how great of a time they are having in NL. What is the biggest issue you feel the tourism industry needs to focus on? Affordable and reliable access by air, sea and road. We need to get visitors here, and more of them, in order to for us all to succeed and continue to grow.  Why did you run for Hospitality NL’s Board of Directors?   I’m very passionate about the tourism sector and as a small business owner it is important to contribute in any way to advance the industry.


Co-owner/Co-operator, The Doctor’s House Inn & Spa Limited & Ocean Delight Cottages What is your favorite aspect of your job? Interacting with our guests, giving tours of our amazing properties and incorporating the natural landscape as part of the guest experience. What is the biggest issue you feel the tourism industry needs to focus on? The cost of doing business and season extension. Why did you run for Hospitality NL’s Board of Directors? To further enhance the connection between the restaurant sector and the greater provincial tourism industry.


General Manager, Murray Premises Hotel What is your favorite aspect of your job? I like that no two days are the same. While our business operates in a consistent fashion and the mission is the same, there is always variety based on activity and what’s happening on a given day. What is the biggest issue you feel the tourism industry needs to focus on? The labour market – I am very concerned about the lack of younger employees and leaders emerging in the industry who want to be a part of tourism and hospitality in Newfoundland and Labrador.    Why did you run for Hospitality NL’s Board of Directors? I felt it was time to get further involved in my industry.  It seems that tourism and hospitality may be one of the resilient sectors that can sustain itself during challenging economic times. I hope to be able to assist Hospitality NL in its quest to partner with operators as we try and stabilize into the future.

WAYNE HALLETT Owner/Operator, The Prints of Whales Inn What is your favorite aspect of your job? It is rewarding to be part of a dynamic growing industry that has the potential to create significant employment and to help sustain rural communities. As we focus on what the traveler wants to experience, we gain a better appreciation for the unique qualities of the people and the culture that make our province a wonderful destination. What is the biggest issue you feel the tourism industry needs to focus on? Sustainability of the industry in all its forms – retaining, maintaining and growing our attractions; promoting the industry as a career choice for younger people; assisting those who wish to enter the industry; maintaining and improving authentic rural experiences for our guests; staffing our anchor attractions and our services. Why did you run for Hospitality NL’s Board of Directors? As a B&B owner/operator, I feel that strong voices are needed to champion the issues that are unique to this segment of the tourism industry. I hope to be one of those voices while, at the same time, promoting the larger issues that will help the whole industry grow.


Co-owner, O’Brien’s Whale & Bird Tours

What is your favorite aspect of your job? Meeting new people and seeing repeat guests, from all over the world, year after year. What is the biggest issue you feel the tourism industry needs to focus on? Collaboration and ensuring everyone has the tools and training they require to develop their business in a professional and competitive manner. Why did you run for Hospitality NL’s Board of Directors? To show support for the industry, to do my part and help grow and prosper the tourism industry in our province.


What is your favorite aspect of your job? Working with individuals, groups and businesses to define and work through difficult situations and successfully implement solutions. What is the biggest issue you feel the tourism industry needs to focus on? Collaboration and use of technology to provide integrated experience development across various sectors of the industry. We need to make our experiences seamless for visitors so they enjoy all aspects of their visit to NL. Why did you run for Hospitality NL’s Board of Directors? To bring more players into the fold, particularly non-profit and indigenous organizations who have a role to play in providing more in-depth guest experiences. Also, after 20 years of strategic planning with businesses and other groups, I wanted to lend my experience and skills to industry development.

What is your favorite aspect of your job? Dealing with people, both internal and external customers. What is the biggest issue you feel the tourism industry needs to focus on? Downturn in the economy from corporate business; however, that also provides an opportunity when it comes to the leisure traveler. Why did you run for Hospitality NL’s Board of Directors? I wanted to represent the Hotel/ Motel Sector and do my part to ensure all sectors grow.


Vice President, Steele Hotels What is your favorite aspect of your job? My favorite aspect of my job is the opportunity to work with an excellent group of employees to grow a successful tourism company for our owner. What is the biggest issue you feel the tourism industry needs to focus on? The biggest issue facing the tourism industry is the province financial situation. Why did you run for Hospitality NL’s Board of Directors? The reason I ran for the board is to work with a group of industry stakeholders to improve the tourism industry in the province.



Owner, Coffee Matters Group of Companies What is your favorite aspect of your job? My favourite aspect of my job is the interaction with my guests. Making sure we meet and exceed their expectations and provide an environment where they feel like we have taken them to another part of the world.  What is the biggest issue you feel the tourism industry needs to focus on? Our biggest issue in tourism right now is we are faced with a shortage of employees who feel that this sector is an available means of supporting families. We need more collaboration with tourism stakeholders and government partners to attract young people into this industry.  Why did you run for Hospitality NL’s Board of Directors? I wanted to be a board member because I am passionate about our province and about the food service industry. I want to make a difference in how the food service industry looks at tourism.

Executive Director, Gros Morne Cooperating Association

What is your favorite aspect of your job? The networking and capacity building. What is the biggest issue you feel the tourism industry needs to focus on? Access to the province and product development. Why did you run for Hospitality NL’s Board of Directors? This is the voice of the industry and place to be to advance the issues facing the industry.



President, Conach Consulting Inc.

General Manager, Capital Hotel/Jag Hotel




March 1-3, 2016, St. John’s, NL


Hospitality NL’s Annual Conference and Trade Show was held in St. John’s from March 1-3, 2016. By all accounts, it was a resounding success with many positive comments regarding this year’s event, as well as great feedback and suggestions for ways to make future events even more beneficial for delegates. Hospitality NL would like to thank all delegates, exhibitors, speakers, panelists, sponsors and vendors for helping make the 2016 Conference and Trade such a resounding success!



Delegates network at the Trade Show

Minister Mitchelmore addresses delegates during the Provincial Luncheon

Judy Sparkes Giannou presents the H. Clayton Sparkes Accommodator of the Year award to Anchor Inn Hotel & Suites

As usual a

GREAT CONFERENCE and a great time. Consideration should be given to shortening it to two days.

...overall it was great to be able to

MEET AND BUILD relationships...

Nunatsiavut Drumdancers


Rod Vatcher presents the Cal LeGrow Tourism Innovator of the Year award to the Old Salt Box Co.

to DIFFERENT SECTORS of the industry. Camping/RV, Outfitting, the small accommodator (B&B, Inns, etc.), Restaurants, etc.

Back Row (L-R): Minister Sean Lyall, Yvonne Jones, M.P., Dion Finlay, HNL Chair, Nick Whalen, M.P. Front Row (L-R) Minister Bardish Chagger, Gudie Hutchings, M.P.

Conference itself was well run and sessions were very informative. Christina led the show! WOW, what energy. Don’s introduction was brilliant and really set the tone for the day.

Marine Atlantic Inc. participating in the Trade Show

Automated External Defibrillators Bystander CPR coupled with quick access to an AED can mean the difference between life and death to someone suffering a sudden cardiac arrest.

AEDs Save Lives. For more info or to request a quote:


HATS OFF HNL - fantastic job!


It may be helpful to have at least one break out session that


MEMBER PROFILES For a complete listing of Hospitality NL members, please visit our Membership Directory

Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador believes the strength of the tourism industry lies in the creativity and passion of tourism operators who continually strive to reach new heights of success. Hospitality NL’s strong member network is as diverse as our industry’s offerings and we are proud to profile some new members below:


Iceberg Cosmeceutical Spa Products Inc. I.C. Spa Products I.C. Spa Products is the trademark owner and manufacturer of the Ossetra® Okowita™, Okocim™ and Ovineo™ brands of Iceberg skincare and natural food products. We are the only skincare line in the world to use Iceberg water based on formulations and 100% pure ingredients from our natural northern environment. Contact Us!

Reflective Marketing Reflective Marketing is a social media marketing agency in St. John’s, NL. Our clients often present the same problem: “we’re doing great things, but nobody seems to know about them!” We’ll help you illuminate your brand and attract your target market through social media and digital marketing. Contact us!

JAG JAG is a boutique hotel as unique as the city it calls home. Our convenient downtown location proudly offers guests a premium experience with modern style and world-class amenities. We take pride in our attention to detail, but more importantly, we take pride in offering our guests an outstanding experience. Contact us!


Newfound Marketing Newfound Marketing is a Digital Marketing Agency based in St. John’s, Newfoundland. We are committed to the belief that every business can establish a successful online presence. Our approach to Online Marketing and Branding empowers businesses to achieve success by letting them do the right things, at the right time. Contact us!


Komatik Real Estate Corporation The Komatik Conference Room is a modern meeting space in Happy Valley-Goose Bay, NL. The adaptable space features 20 person seating in boardroom or training set up, as well as kitchen amenities, computer, projector, whiteboard wall and wireless internet. Book your next meeting online at www.KomatikRealEstate. com. Contact us!

Newfoundland Owned Distributor Foodservice Equipment and Supplies Janitorial Equipment and Supplies Industrial Chemicals Automotive Detailing Supplies!

I St. John’s I 579-2151 ST. JOHN’S • DARTMOUTH • MONCTON 99 Blackmarsh Road

Holiday Inn Express & Suites St. John’s Airport The new Holiday Inn Express & Suites St. John’s Airport is directly located at the St. John’s International Airport. Stay Smart with our free Wi-Fi high-speed Internet, get a good start with our complimentary hot breakfast buffet and our free airport shuttle. Unwind in our interior pool or our onsite fitness center. Contact us!

Targa Newfoundland Targa Newfoundland is one of only three internationally recognized Targa motorsports events in the world. Each September, the annual tarmac rally covers more than 1,600 kilometers of the challenging, twisty roads of the central and eastern portion of Newfoundland, including over 440 kilometers of closed-road, flat-out Targa stages. Contact us!

Skills & Knowledge emerit Training and Certification Resources • Supervisor • Tour Guide • Tourism Visitor Information Counsellor • Wine Server • Workplace Trainer Designed to complement existing training, emerit resources include National Occupational Standards, ebooks, Online Learning, and traditional Workbooks. They are flexible enough to be used as self-study courses or taught in a classroom or group training setting. You may also reward top performers with emerit professional certification. Successful candidates are awarded a nationally recognized professional designation that identifies them as among the elite in their occupation. Employers can avail of the CanadaNewfoundland & Labrador Job Grant to supplement the cost of this training and certification. For more information about how emerit can help prepare your business for success in the face of labour shortages, visit or contact Hospitality NL’s Manager of Workforce & Industry Development, Juanita Ford.



Hospitality NL Chair, Dion Finlay and Tourism HR Canada President, Philip Mondor, presented several tourism professionals with their emerit® Professional Certification during Hospitality NL’s 2016 Conference & Trade Show.


Don’t miss this 3-day event with international speakers and lots of local flavour

St. Jude Hotel


Housekeeping Room Attendant


Housekeeping Room Attendant


TRINITYSEDUCTION.CA For more information, contact: 1.709.583.2070 Wooden Boat Museum of NL


The tourism and travel industry in Newfoundland and Labrador is facing a projected labour shortage equivalent to about 2,000 jobs by 2020 (Tourism HR Canada). For many businesses, finding and keeping high performing employees will be even more difficult. Formal training and recognition programs are important strategies for retention of key employees, and will be crucial as shortages return. Developed by industry professionals and hospitality educators, emerit training and certification resources are available for dozens of occupations, including: • Bartender • Banquet Server • Director of Housekeeping • Event Coordinator • Food and Beverage Manager • Food and Beverage Server • Front Desk Agent • Heritage Interpreter • Hotel General Manager • Housekeeping Room Attendant • Hunting Guide • Line Cook • Night Auditor • Reservation Sales Agent


Renewing Vision 2020 Submitted by: Newfoundland and Labrador Tourism Board



A Vision for Newfoundland and Labrador Tourism


Partners of the Newfoundland and Labrador Tourism Board are pleased to release the refreshed and renewed Vision 2020! Six years after the launch of the Vision in 2009, the Tourism Board embarked on a process to update, refresh and renew the provincial tourism strategy. The refreshed strategy reflects the accomplishments achieved, as well as the challenges remaining, putting renewed focus on what the priorities must be heading into the home stretch towards 2020. With four years remaining until 2020, the timing to do this could not have been better. When the Vision was developed throughout 2008 and 2009, research combined with industry wide consultation informed each of the seven strategic directions and each of the goals and objectives within. This combination of data and industry input also served as the foundation for the Vision renewal and was enabled by partner collaboration. In 2015, the Tourism Board completed a second Milestone Evaluation that outlines collective partner progress towards the achievement of the Vision. That assessment enabled qualitative and quantitative measures to be discussed as a means of informing how to tackle the remaining challenges. While such information is critically important, it cannot be considered in isolation of industry input. As such, an important part

A goal without a plan is just a wish. — Larry Elder

of the renewal process was to ensure that industry’s voice was reflected. Destination Development provided a timely opportunity for just that. The Destination Development process was launched in 2013 and as of March 31, 2016, five regional reports will be completed and come together to inform the provincial product development strategy. Heavily dependent upon industry contribution, the Destination Development process created an opportunity for almost 50 in-person sessions with operators and industry contributors throughout the province. Conversations spanned everything tourism and the feedback was phenomenal, helping shape not only the Destination Development reports, but the view of tourism in general. In addition to Destination Development, this year the Tourism Board has also been discussing the importance of industry alignment as it pertains to working together and using available resources more wisely. As a complex industry with many partners, tourism requires now, more than ever, focused, strategic investment. By carefully examining what resources are available, both human and financial, productive conversations about how to move forward have been taking place. The renewed Vision does not include drastic changes. The seven strategic directions remain the same but; the devil truly is in the details. 2016 in Newfoundland and Labrador looks very different than did 2009 and we must adjust according to the socio and economic factors that make up our current reality. As such, the goals and objectives within the Vision are more pointed towards strategic tourism investment to ensure a sustainable future for the industry. As 2020 nears, one thing is certain. Communication and collaboration form the foundation from which to build upon our collective success. The Tourism Board, as a forum for informing strategic discussion, is enabling partnerships that are imperative to advancing the industry. And, renewing our commitment to Vision 2020 is imperative to remaining focused. It is said that, “A goal without a plan is just a wish.” The Vision provides our renewed plan so that together we reach our ultimate goal of: doubling tourism spending by 2020 by attracting more visitors, getting them to stay longer and providing opportunities for them to experience more.

CLICK HERE to view the renewed Vision 2020 document.

Research Corner Submitted by: Department of Business, Tourism, Culture and Rural Development

It is no secret that the performance of the Canadian tourism industry is reliant on a strong domestic travel market. In 2014, Canadian travellers accounted for 81% of Canada’s total tourism revenue, a number which has increased steadily since 2000 when it accounted for 69%. Canada, however, has found itself head-to- head with the United States in a bid to attract Canadian travellers. While Canadians do travel and spend domestically, they are still more likely travel to the US rather than Canada when travelling outside of their own province or region. Over the past ten years, Canadian travellers have spent more and more money outside of Canada – leading to a $17.8 billion travel deficit. However, recent economic trends and favourable currency conditions have reinvigorated domestic travel. Within this context, Destination Canada’s Global Tourism Watch (GTW) research program tracks the Canadian domestic out-of-region travel market1 to monitor awareness and travel intentions, to assess perceptions and Canada’s competitiveness as well as to identify travel motivators and barriers for travel in Canada. The annual GTW – Canada Study provides a comprehensive picture of the state of Canadians’ domestic travel, their perceptions and motivations. Comprising over 12 million potential travellers, the Canadian out-of-region travel market is significant and provides much opportunity for Canadian tourism operators. It is also this province’s largest source of non-resident visitors. The 2015 survey results show that interest in visiting Canada in the future has remained very high (90%) and continues to be slightly ahead of interest in the US (87%). It also topped interest in other international destinations, including Italy, the UK and Australia/New Zealand. Travel spending intentions over the next 12 months are also tipping the scales in favour of Canada, with 80% of Canadian travellers indicating that they would spend the same or more on leisure travel in their own country compared to 69% who would spend the same or more on international travel. Short-break holidays are equally popular with Canadians, with 80% of travellers indicating that they would spend more or the same on these types of vacations.

Although the US continues to be a popular destination for Canadian travellers, Canada’s perceived value among Canadian travellers remained steady in 2015 and continued to rank above the US on all value attributes – this bodes well for the upcoming travel season. Out-of-region travellers ranked Canada first not only compared to the US but also compared to the country’s other main competitors like Italy and France in terms of providing “travel experiences they are specifically looking for” and being “a destination with places they have always dreamed of visiting” – revealing a mindset that should provide fertile grounds for domestic destinations as well as individual tourism operators to move potential travellers along the path to purchase with attractive and differentiated offers and packages. Furthermore, nearly six in ten Canadian travellers (59%) think of Canada as a place with unique features, putting it well ahead of the US (46%). They are also more likely “to pay a little more” to travel in Canada than they would for travelling in the US, implying that they think of Canada as a destination with higher quality experiences. Supported by perceptions of Canada as “a place that offers good value for money” and “a destination with reasonable prices for food, accommodation and entertainment”, Canadian destinations, including this province, appear to be in the perfect position this year to reap the benefits of a low Loonie. Early indications of travel intentions do point to Canadian travellers taking increased interest in their home country where “a dollar is dollar”, however, the effect of the low dollar still needs to be nurtured by making travellers aware that experiences they seek and value are available in Canada. In that respect, survey results do indicate that destinations have some work to do: While 68% of Canadian travellers described their knowledge of vacation opportunities in Canada beyond their own province/region as ‘excellent’ or ‘very good’ in 2014, this number dropped to 60% in 2015. This decline may, in part, be related to a decline in advertising recall for Canadian destinations among travellers which fell ten percentage points from 60% in 2013 to 50% in 2015. This compares to

63% among Canadian travellers recalling advertising for US destinations (dropping five points during the same period) – another sign that Canada faces its stiffest competition from our neighbour to the South and making it all the more essential for tourism operators to directly target domestic travellers and differentiate their products to help push interested travellers along the path-to-purchase. When it comes to advertising, this province is no stranger to differentiating itself, resulting in a consistent top ranking among recalled Canadian destinations in Destination Canada’s Global Tourism Watch survey. As well, early travel intentions to Newfoundland and Labrador indicate that our “colourful and whimsical” ads have piqued many a Canadian traveller’s curiosity about this place and are enticing them with the promise of beautiful scenery, unspoiled landscapes and “a slower pace of life” – experiences sought by many Canadians. The GTW study indicates that Canadian travellers generally look for a combination of urban and nature-based experiences when travelling out-of-province or their own region. For these travellers, Newfoundland and Labrador offers a variety of ever popular activities such as wildlife and marine life viewing, hiking or camping as well as opportunities to visit national parks, historic sites, world heritage sites or trying local cuisine. While it appears that Canadian tourism will benefit from a weak Canadian dollar even more so in 2016 than it did in 2015 by keeping travellers at home, Destination Canada’s GTW – Canada Study leaves no doubt that the country still faces stiff competition from the US which tries to capture Canadians’ top of mind position with a $20 million annual market budget. While favourable exchange rates are creating an environment conducive to higher rates of domestic travel in the short term, the temporary nature of this boost means Canadian tourism operators must work to differentiate their product and promote awareness and attachment to Canadian destinations and authentic experiences if they want to attract the tourism dollars of Canadians over the long term.

The out-of-region travel market is defined as those Canadians who travel within Canada outside of their own province or region (e.g. Atlantic Canada).



Destination Canada’s 2015 Global Tourism Watch Research: Domestic Travel in Canada


From the Regions


Submitted by: Mark Lamswood Executive Director Go Western Newfoundland


“As You Like It” - William on Western Newfoundland In William Shakespeare’s As You Like It (Act II, Scene VII) the world is compared to a stage and life a play. Men and women are players and they all have their “…exits and entrances.” To extend that analogy a little further and into the realm of tourism development, we have multiple opportunities to engage the visitor across our many stages. Our online presence, the signage we use, how we employ our ferry and airport terminals as a canvas for engagement, at our park entrances, attractions, restaurants, municipalities, and our festivals and events are all examples of how we strive to perform As THEY Like It. The good news is, we’re a destination that can and should stay true to thine own self across these opportunities to engage as we continue to work on developing our destination. When these performance elements come together with a warm smile and a genuine laugh, an ovation is sure to follow. Enhanced infrastructure and accessibility at our three airports in St. Anthony, Deer Lake and Stephenville along with partnerships

Submitted by: Andrew Hiscock Tourism Development Officer Legendary Coasts of Eastern Newfoundland

Travel Show Season Kicks Off! It’s been a busy winter season for us at the Legendary Coasts of Eastern Newfoundland! We would like to congratulate the staff and board of Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador for an excellent Annual Conference! It was fantastic to see all of our partners from across the industry, take in some very interesting sessions, and celebrate all the award winners! Congrats all! Our marketing activities began in Boston, with the Boston Globe Travel Show. This travel show has always been an important one for Eastern Newfoundland, but we were excited to see some changes. This year, as opposed to Newfoundland and Labrador attending on

Photo Credit: Gaylene Buckle, Gros Morne Theatre Festival

in place to further enhance the visitor experience will help the Western region tackle one of its main development priorities – “Improving the sense of arrival at key entrance and exit points throughout Western region.” Go Western Newfoundland has had a long-standing partnership with Marine Atlantic and have been working closely together to identify areas of improvement when considering the visitor’s journey. Similarly in St. Barbe, efforts are underway to create a more visitor-centric experience. The entrance and exit points at our UNESCO World Heritage Sites at Gros Morne and L’Anse aux Meadows are considered key among our development priorities where significant investments have been and

its own, we joined the Destination Canada team, strengthening the Canadian presence at the show, and expanding the province’s reach within the Canadian brand. We were proud to attend with the Province’s Tourism Department, Vision Atlantic, Linkum Tours, and Gros Morne Gatherings. What a fine team representing product from all over the province! This spring, we are very excited for the Downhome Expo! This is a key opportunity to engage the resident market, and we are bringing a large group from all over the region. With many successes last year, we anticipate even more this year. Come see us at the Glacier in Mount Pearl, April 15-17! Our DDP Implementation is moving forward. We are working with our Eastern NL Geology Network in developing a new brochure highlighting geology in Eastern NL and individual experience development consultations with Harvey Sawler iImagine, sub regional sessions, in partnership with Craft Council NL for our Craft in Tourism imitative were completed in preparation for a larger project in the Spring 2017.  

continue to be made there. Many of our municipalities are becoming increasingly involved in their opportunities to engage the visitor as well. At the operator level, program and experience development decisions are as informed as they ever have been with Destination Development Plans available throughout the province and the recently published Creating Experiences Toolkit. With well-aligned levy group support to these ends and a star-studded cast of natural, heritage and cultural assets, tourism development in this region is gearing up for our regional tour of encore-worthy performances. Bravo to all involved as we exit (and enter)…stage West!

The NL Team at the Boston Globe Travel Show. L-R: Rodney Walsh of NL Tourism, Joy Fitzgerald of Vision Atlantic, Andrew Hiscock of LCEN, Maria Matthews of Vision Atlantic, Ed English of Linkum Tours, Ian Stone of Gros Morne Gatherings.

As busy as we have been, it only gets busier as our seasonal members begin opening their doors for another season! We wish all of you smooth preparations for a very exciting year ahead. Tourism across the province, the products, the people, and the experiences, have never been positioned better in the marketplace, and we can’t wait for what may be the best tourism year yet!

My First HNL Experience I’m a tourism industry newbie — jumping in at the deep end with Destination St. John’s about three months ago. I am, however, an experienced tourist and it was from that perspective which I began this new phase of my career. The learning curve has been a steep one, not in terms of the actual work but the industry-specific language, acronyms, structure and culture. DSJ is a knowledgeable, supportive, and patient team — explaining

Submitted by: Matt Molloy Marketing Coordinator Adventure Central Newfoundland

Central wins big at HNL It was an evening of celebration for four members of Adventure Central Newfoundland (ACN) at Hospitality NL’s Tourism Excellence Awards Gala in St. John’s. When the March 3 gala came to a close, ACN members Anchor Inn and Suites, the Old Salt Box Co. and Prime Berth Fishing Heritage Centre came away with awards, as did the chairperson of ACN, Wayne Hallett. Prime Berth earned the Sustainable Tourism Award, the Anchor Inn and Suites won the Clayton Sparkes Accommodator of the Year Award, the Old Salt Box Co. captured the Cal LeGrow Tourism Innovator of the Year Award, and Hallett walked away with the Tourism Champion of the Year Award. “I don’t know why people keep trying to surprising me, but they do a good job of it,” said a joking Hallett, who runs the Prints of Whales Inn in Sandringham, along with his wife, Ruth, during his acceptance speech. “I’m extremely proud to do the things I’ve been able to do because of Ruth’s support, and every time I leave home, she has to pick up the ball and run with it.” Along with helping run the B&B, Hallett sits on the provincial tourism board, the

Provincial Quality Assurance Board and the Beaches Arts and Heritage Society. He’s also the chair of the Road to the Beaches Tourism Association and the Eastport Peninsula Agricultural Exhibition Committee, and is working hard to revitalize the provincial bed and breakfast association. Like Hallett, the owners of the Anchor Inn and Suites also preach outstanding customer service. To Deborah Bourden and Wilma Hartmann, they live by the mantra, an accommodation is more than just a place to rest your head at the end of the day. “It has been the most amazing ride, and we’ve met some of the most incredible people,” Bourden told the crowd at the gala, as her and Hartmann took to the stage to accept their award. “I tell our staff at the beginning of every year, there is not one person who, when they start to plan their vacation say, I cannot wait to go to Twillingate and sleep at the Anchor Inn. They come to go out in the boat with Dave (Boyd, Prime Bert Fishing Heritage Centre), or with Barry (Rogers, Iceberg Quest), or Perry (Young, Twillingate Adventure Tours). They come to walk the trails and they come to meet the people.” And when people visit Twillingate, or Fogo Island, or Musgrave Harbour, or Greenspond, they can also stay with the Old Salt Box Co., who own eight vacation homes throughout Adventure Central. Owners Janet Denstedt and Richard Wharton are the proud owners of this business, and couldn’t have been happier with their Cal LeGrow Tourism Innovator of the Year Award.

What a pleasure as well, to have in attendance the Federal Minister of Small Business and Tourism, the Honourable Bardish Chagger — she was not only in attendance but also completely approachable and involved with those around her, an advocate for tourism — an inspiration and hope for the industry in a challenging time. There were too many highlights for me to cover here but Christina Miranda, of Redpoint Marketing PR in New York, definitely captured hearts and minds with her presentations — engaging at 360 degrees. Her messages were clear, apt and they stuck. Thank you to HNL for putting on such an interesting, educational and entertaining event and to DSJ for the opportunity to attend — I encourage other employers to support the attendance of their staff at this valuable conference. SPRING 2016

Submitted by: Alison Cass Marketing Coordinator Destination St. John’s

terms and context as needed. When offered the opportunity to participate in the 2016 Hospitality Newfoundland & Labrador Conference, I was thrilled — it meant a twoday immersion in “Tourism”. HNL was the immersive experience I needed and so much more. The people I met, listened to and watched were engaged, interesting and interested. The positivity and support offered each other and genuine kindness and sense of both work and fun displayed throughout the event was palpable. What great group of people I’ve landed in! Attending every session like a keener, I was exhausted at the end of both days through intake of new information, considering angles and developments with potential for application at DSJ and for our partners. My perspective has made the shift from one of tourist to one of tourism industry member.

13 (L-R) Deborah Bourden, David Boyd, Christine Boyd, Wilma Hartmann, Janet Denstedt, Richard Wharton, Wayne Hallett and Dr. Latonia Hartery (winner of the Cruise Vision Award).

“We weren’t expecting this,” said a surprised Denstedt, with Wharton at her side, during their acceptance speech. “Richard and I are very proud to be part of this industry, and it’s just spectacular to be able to offer this to our guests who are coming to Newfoundland, and the people of Newfoundland, who want to travel around the province and enjoy the beauty that we have.” As for Captain David Boyd and his Prime Berth Fishing Heritage Centre, which he operates with his wife, Christine, the Sustainability Award was really a long time coming. He’s been nominated for the award many times in the past, but this was his year. “Twenty-two years ago, Christine and I started cutting down alders in the old gravel pit, next to the Twillingate causeway, and created Prime Berth as a tribute to our fisher forefathers,” Boyd told the audience during his acceptance speech. “We’ve enjoyed the countless hours we’ve spent interacting with thousands of visitors over the past 21 years.”

Tourism Quality Assurance NL


Submitted by: Tourism Quality Assurance Newfoundland and Labrador


Tourism Quality Assurance of Newfoundland and Labrador (formerly known as Canada Select Newfoundland and Labrador) introduced their newest program, Access Advisor at the Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador Conference in March! Access Advisor is a program that promotes, verifies and designates levels of accessibility. No longer is accessibility solely a wheelchair issue, rather the degree to which a product, service or experience is available to as many persons as possible, crossing all age groups, interests, activity level and need. With the Access Advisor program, you can obtain full or partially accessible designation, as well as hearing and sight accessible designations. The partially accessible designation is also known as a

ard Program

senior friendly designation. With the aging baby boomer generation, the number of seniors in Canada is expected to double, combined with an increase in persons with disabilities travel, Newfoundland and Labrador will need to be ready to respond to the requirements of these travellers. An Access Advisor inspection will provide you with a detailed report on your current level of accessibility, as well as recommendations of minor adjustments that can be made in order to make your property more accessible. Often times, it is simple things that we can do that make a big difference, such as replacing knobs

that require a twist motion of the wrist with lever handles on doors and faucets, ensuring rugs are secured, or simply ensuring sufficient lighting in paths of travel. Having properties more accessible, and more welcoming to as many persons as possible will provide significant returns on investment and result in a positive experience for all guests. By participating in the Access Advisor program you will be able to market your property’s accessibility through print signage to be displayed at your business, a website link on and promotion through social media.

Check out Tourism Quality Assurance’s new website and follow on social media for more information and updates!



Members of Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador or employees of a member company are eligible for preferred personal home and auto insurance rates. Our products, services and discounts are designed specifically for group members and there are many opportunities to save. Call 1-877-4STEERS today for your no-obligation, insurance quote. PLUS! You can earn one AIR MILES® reward mile for every $20 in premium on your home and auto insurance from RSA.* *All AIR MILES offers are subject to the Terms and Conditions of RSA, and may be changed or withdrawn without notice. Terms and Conditions can be found at

Discounted Airfare Rates for HNL Members Nain Natuashish Hopedale Makkovik Schefferville Churchill Falls

Postville Goose Bay

Wabush St. Anthony Blanc Sablon Gander

Sept-Îles Deer Lake Stephenville

St. John’s


Benef its & Conditions

Québec City Montréal


• Advance Booking: No applicable advance booking restrictions required on these corporate fares. Bookings, subject to availability, may be made at these fares at any time prior to flight departure. • Change Fees: Our regular change fee of $75 will not be applicable to these fares. Changes to reservations can be accommodated without an extra charge at any time prior to scheduled departure, subject to availability.

For more information, please contact us at, 1-800-563-2800 or speak with your HNL representative. Please note that the contract number/booking code must be quoted at time of booking.

• Transferable: Tickets may be transferred to another employee without an extra charge or change in fares at any time prior to scheduled departure. • Fully Refundable: Tickets for reservations canceled at least twenty four (24) hours prior to departure are fully refundable. • No Shows: If a no show occurs the value of the ticket is lost. • Baggage Allowance: Two pieces of luggage are permitted at 25lbs per piece (50lbs total) without charge.



Recognizing individuals and organizations that rank among the most innovative and passionate in the tourism industry, the Tourism Excellence Awards are presented yearly during Hospitality NL’s Annual Conference and Trade Show.

Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador congratulates the following recipients of the 2016 Tourism Excellence Awards: Corporate Partner of the Year Downhome Inc. Newfoundland and Labrador Accommodator of the Year Anchor Inn Hotel & Suites Twillingate, NL

Other award recipients honoured during Hospitality NL’s Conference and Trade Show include: Cultural Tourism Award: Battle Harbour Historic Trust Battle Harbour, NL

Tourism Innovator of the Year Old Salt Box Co. located throughout Central NL

Sustainable Tourism Award: Prime Berth Fishing Museum Twillingate, NL

Tourism Business of the Year Doctor’s House Inn & Spa Green’s Harbour, NL

Doug Wheeler Award: Jill Curran, Lighthouse Picnics & Maxxim Vacations, NL

Tourism Champion of the Year Wayne Hallett, Prints of Whales Inn Sandringham, NL

Cruise Vision Award: Dr. Latonia Hartery

Tourism Times - Spring 2016  

The newsletter of the tourism industry association of Newfoundland and Labrador

Tourism Times - Spring 2016  

The newsletter of the tourism industry association of Newfoundland and Labrador