Alain St.Ange, the Seychelles Minister responsible for Tourism and Culture, who was leading a tourism public-private sector delegation on a working visit to Israel on Wednesday, July 29, addressed the tourism travel trade of Israel followed by an open dialogue with the press. Minister St.Ange was being accompanied on this working visit by Rosemarie Hoareau, the Director of Marketing at the Seychelles Tourism Board; Alan Mason, the MD of Mason’s Travel; Guillaume Albert, the MD of Creole Travel Services; and Daniella Payet-Alis, owner of Seychelles Reservations who is also representing her group of small home-grown Seychellois hotels on Mahe, Praslin, La Digue, and Cerf Islands. In Israel, the Ministerial delegation was joined by Arie Goldstein, the Seychelles Honorary Consul accredited to the state of Israel.
Minister St.Ange said as he addressed the Israel tourism travel trade that Seychelles was launching their first ever drive to claim their fair share of the Israeli holidaymakers. “Today, we are here to tell you that we are and remain a safe destination, which you can access with no visa and where you will feel at home.”
“We are here now, because we are confident that the Israelis, as a people, are looking for a new destination for them to spend their holidays. We have to say thank you to Tali of Spirit World who maintained a series of annual direct non-stop charters to our islands. Now we are ready to grow our presence in this source market, and we can announce that later this year a second company will start with their own series of direct non-stop charters to our islands. We can also announce that we are now actively cooperating with Ethiopian Airlines to use Addis Ababa as a hub for holidaymakers from Israel wanting to get to Seychelles as and when they take their holidays,” Minister Alain St.Ange of the Seychelles said.
Minister St.Ange went on to say that on this trip he would not be talking about the white sandy beaches of the Seychelles even though they are listed as the best of the best, because they are clean and safe. “I will not speak of our beaches, because this you all know that we have the best in a sun, sea, and sand holiday. I will also not speak about our turquoise blue seas that are clear and clean, because this also you know that what Seychelles has to offer is just exceptional. I will also not speak about our year-round summer climate, because this you all know that the weather pattern of Seychelles has given it the connotation of the holiday destination with perpetual summer, but what I will speak to you about is us, the people of Seychelles, who makes our destination unique. Seychelles with its 115 islands made up of both granitic islands and also of the flat coral ones has a population of some 90,000 only admired as the melting pot of cultures because the Creole people of Seychelles of today originated from 5 historical beaches of France, Africa, the UK, India, and China. Today, we are just a perfect mix living in total harmony with a rich culture displayed in the form of cuisine, music, and dancing. The difference of Seychelles with other destinations is that in our islands it is our people who are at the center of our development with our culture placed as the base of our tourism development,” Minister St.Ange said as he addressed the gathered tourism travel trade and press in his ad-lib speech.
The Seychelles Minister went on to speak about his one-on-one meeting with President Shimon Peres and quoted the former Israeli President, Prime Minister, and Nobel Peace Laureate when he said that “Our people is our profit.” “President Shimon Peres said that we need peace between people, not just between governments. I am quoting this today, because we all know that the state of Israel and the republic of Seychelles are friendly countries, but today we are inviting the Israeli people to become our friends, and the basis for real friendship is to know each other and to visit each other,” Minister Alain St.Ange said as he described Seychelles as the land of real emotions with lots to do.
“In Seychelles, everything is at your fingertips – diving or snorkeling, big game fishing or island hopping, bush walks or just lazing on the beach, casinos or fine dining, cultural manifestations of just leisurely walks in Victoria, the world’s smallest capital,” the Seychelles Minister said before launching the first ever travel manual of the islands printed in Hebrew.