Saturday, February 21, 2009

BC Tourism Industry Awards

The annual BC Tourism Industry Awards were held on Feb. 12, 2009 at the Hyatt Regency Vancouver. Presented by Tourism British Columbia and the Council of Tourism Associations of British Columbia, nine awards were handed out during the evening event to individuals and organizations in the tourism industry.

Foresight Sustainability Award:
Delta Sun Peaks Resort and Residence. They have established a number of sound environmental practices and partnerships with socially conscious organizations to reduce impacts on the natural beauty of its unique location. They have worked to actively lower their carbon emissions, conserve water and electricity, reduce waster and provide green services for its guests.

Best Tourism Marketing Campaign Award: Tourism Victoria for its Set Sail on Us campaign that featured complimentary vehicle and passenger fare aboard BC Ferries to and from Vancouver when booking two consecutive nights in Victoria. Packages sold out in three days and the destination saw a 362% increase in sales through Tourism Victoria.

Technology in Tourism Award: For the launch of a new map marker technology on their organization's website at, which enables members to plot locations of boat launches, favorite resort and fishing spots and hazards. The site also allows downloading the data onto Google Earth.

Employees First Award: Grouse Mountain Resort, with a staff of more than 700 in a variety of seasonal and year-round positions. Guided by the Peak principle, working at Grouse Mountain is more than just a 9-5 job as employees are encouraged to reach their personal best.

Tourism Media Award:
National PBS and the syndicated commercial TV series, Organic Living with the Hippy Gourmet was recognized for filming multiples episodes on Vancouver Island. The show reaches more than 34 million homes every week. episodes featured local businesses in Saanich, the Salt Spring Market, Cowichan Valley, Tofino and Cortes Island.

Environmentally Responsible Tourism Award: Yasodhara Ashram Yoga Retreat & Study Centre, which has engaged in programs to reduce energy consumption since 1994. They have adapted innovative, energy efficient technologies that were expanded into a long-term sustainability initiative to be carbon neutral by 2013, their 50th anniversary.

Sport Tourism Community Legacy Award:
Tourism Abbotsford for its Sport Town Canada marketing strategy. The strategy aims to provide leadership, forget local partnerships and offer direct support to local sports groups and event right holders.

SuperHost Customer Service Award: Darrel Dueck of Elysia Resort on Quesnel for his many random acts of kindness and exceptional customer service. He installed a guest's missing but vital bilge pump on his boat as part of a surprise birthday present for the long-time resort guest.

William Van Horne Visionary Award:
Terry Hood, General Manger of Link BC and Dr. Brian White, Director at Royal Roads University of the School of Tourism & Hotel Management. For their leadership in educational programming and innovative teaching in making the BC tourism industry one of the "best of the best."

Sign at the Blaine, WA border truck crossing
Photo by Sue Frause

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