Gloomy attitudes to tourist growth on St Helena have been criticised by development staff Kirsty Yon and Merrill Joshua, after a visit to South Africa.
The Enterprise St Helena pair express their frustration in a report on a trip as guests of the Mantis Collection, the group planning to turn Ladder Hill Fort into a hotel.
They tell the ESH newsletter: “One aspect we both have noticed is how tired we are of the negativity on St Helena.
“We have just been reminded that the rest of the world has little time and tolerance for dilly dallying”.
Their “enrichment” trip involved visiting hotels and training schools, seeking new ideas that could be adapted for the island. One hotel school was already coaching students from another island group, the Maldives.
They also visited Mantis hotels in Cape Town and at the Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe, as well as visiting the group’s headquarters.
A highlight was meeting a tourism official for the Galapagos Islands, which have many similarities with St Helena, including a highly sensitive ecology.
“Really interesting,” says Merrill. “We spent three hours discussing stories and comparisons of our two islands.”
Read more: Enterprise St Helena newsletter 25 (pdf)