By the Caribbean Journal staff
Grenada is breaking records amid a full-fledged tourism boom.
The tri-island destination (which also includes the islands of Petite Martinique and Carriacou), welcomed a total of 528,077 visitors across the cruise, stayover and yachting sectors — a new record for Grenada.
That mark represented a 12.9 percent increase over 2017, led by a nearly 10 percent surge in stayover arrivals to 160,970 from 146,375, including a 17 percent jump over the Christmas holiday.
“Grenada ticks all the boxes when it comes to your perfect vacation, from the tropical nature to the tasty cuisine to the wonderful people, so we know these visitors will share their experiences and help us spread the word about Pure Grenada, the Spice of the Caribbean,” said Patricia Maher, CEO of the Grenada Tourism Authority.
The Canadian source market showed the highest stayover growth, with a 19 percent increase in visitors to 17,364, while the all-important United States market saw 12.4 percent growth to 75,577 stayover visitors for the year.
The yachting sector also saw big gains, with 10.82 percent growth in arrivals and 428 more yacht calls overall.
“Achieving 500,000 arrivals has been a landmark goal for the destination of Grenada, Carriacou and Petite Martinique. It is a testament to the growing island’s influence in the marketplace and industry growth. But we will not stop there as we want to grow the pie so that everyone gets a bigger slice. To do that, we must continue to keep our islands pure, share our warmth and hospitality with visitors, as well as deliver high quality professional service.”
The news comes as Grenada just welcomed a new flagship hotel for the island: the ultra-luxe Silversands boutique on Grand Anse Beach.
Another important hotel is slated to debut soon, with the highly anticipated Kimpton Kawana Bay in the pipeline as well.
It’s the latest surge for Grenada, which posted 8 percent growth in 2017 as well, among the highest continued growth rates in the Caribbean.