St. Croix, a tropical paradise in the United States Virgin Islands, was the featured destination at the first Travel and Leisure Global Bazaar held at the Park Avenue Armory, in NYC, to celebrate the magazine’s 40th anniversary.
The travel fair attracted thousands of guests to the Sept. 16-18 weekend festivities with the allure of the tropical rhythms of carnival, cuisine and offerings that showcased the diverse culture and heritage of countries from around world.
The collaboration between the United States Virgin Islands (USVI), and the magazine giant, brought together the tastes of fish fry and rum of Barbados, Ice Wine and hand-shucked oysters of Canada, and the famed street food of Singapore.
Guests were also entertained by the Bula dancers from Fiji, Carnival and the Moko Jumbie Stilt Dancers from St. Croix, and the Maracatu Musicians from Brazil. Elements of the South Africa Safari and Diwali Festival from India also illuminated the armory.
In addition, a replica of the Chilean miners’ rescue pod was poised for picture taking, as the U.S. State Department offered free glamour shots to passport applicants.
Travel and Leisure, a popular destination magazine that has over the years featured exciting travel options, food, breathtaking scenery, and arts and culture, engaged the USVI Tourist Board to select the best destination to be featured at its Global Bazaar, said Brand Nugent, assistant commissioner for the USVI Department of Tourism.
Nugent told Caribbean Life that his organization was grateful for the offer to collaborate in what he called, a momentous occasion for Travel and Leisure – a periodical that the USVI had advertised with over the years.
A native of St. Croix, Nugent called his island an untouched gem, known for its rich culture and heritage, its traditional Moko Jumbie stilt dancers and the wonderful cuisine of Johnnycake and Callaloo.
The charm and friendly atmosphere of St. Croix are features that drew Travel and Leisure to this tropical utopia, said Nugent, adding, it was a great opportunity also to reach a new audience.
Nugent praised the Moko Jumbie stilt and carnival dancers entertainment segment that he said attracted guests who waited at the USVI booth throughout the three-day event to see the performance. “Travel and Leisure was pleased with the response and has plans to make the bazaar an annual event,” said Nugent.
Other big name sponsors included, Israel’s Ministry of Tourism, Delta, American Express, Hilton, Infinity, Green & Black’s, Shangri-La, Renaissance Hotels and others.