Caribbean Pitches Cruise Sector in Miami

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Above: tourism boards from around the region were on hand in Miami Beach (All photos by CJ)

By Alexander Britell

MIAMI BEACH — For some countries, it’s a growing niche. For others, it’s a major driver.

The cruise sector is among the region’s most significant economic forces, and the trend for much of the region seems to be up.

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That was the takeaway this week at the Cruise Shipping Miami conference at the Miami Beach Convention Center.

Indeed, just three destinations in the region failed to post positive cruise growth last year, with some posting increases as high as 71 percent last year, according to data from the Caribbean Tourism Organization.

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That was evident this year, which seemed to show a stronger Caribbean contingent that put on an always-lively display replete with rum, DJs and carnival dancers.

The biggest show was put on by the US Virgin Islands, which took over the Caribbean corner of the hall with a big-ticket show that included towering stilt walkers.