US Virgin Islands bounce back from Hurricane Irma
The US Virgin Islands are already prepared to receive MS Adventure of the Seas cruise ship, a remarkable feat considering the damages that powerful Hurricane Irma left behind. After resolving electricity issues and cleaning up the fallen trees, St. Croix welcomes around 4,000 passengers only ten days after the nature hazard.
Since the destructive winds and stormy rains of Hurricane Irma passed through the territory on 8th September (less than two weeks ago), the US Virgin Islands have recovered rapidly. Local authorities have announced that after hard work to get back on track in the tourism sector, it is ready to welcome the first cruise ship since the natural disaster occurred. The MS Adventure of the Seas landed on the Ann Abramson pier in Frederiksted on Sunday 17th September.
The docks of St Croix were the ones to welcome the hefty sum of 4,000 passengers, who visited the area from 8 am to 5pm. According to the US Virgin Islands’ Department of Tourism, St. Croix escaped the worst of Hurricane Irma and despite the initial difficulties in re-establishing electricity in the region, the island is now ready to welcome visitors, as hotels and attractions are all once again up and running.
Beverly Nicholson-Doty, Commissioner of Tourism highlighted the importance of St. Croix availability, as the department of tourism’s sales and marketing teams have already strategically positioned St. Croix in the marketplace:
“St. Croix will lead our tourism positioning for the foreseeable future. We have already started to shift our marketing strategy to focus on St. Croix, while we rebuild St. Thomas and St. John.”
Moreover, the commissioner went on to say that the re-establishment of tourism operations that began with the welcoming of MS Adventure of the Seas cruise ship, responded to the much-needed injection of economic activity:
“Tourism is an important industry for us in the US Virgin Islands and we are depending on the resilience of tourism and of our people to revitalise our economy and support our residents across both districts.”
Though the two remaining islands are still suffering the damages caused by Hurricane Irma, Nicholson-Doty pointed out it was necessary to kick off tourism activities as soon as possible in order to help St. Thomas and St. John recover. As the main economic activity, tourism is the pillar that will help the entire Caribbean territory bounce back from the unfortunate nature hazard. Together with efforts from relief workers and construction, tourism is ultimately the key to the full recovery of the US Virgin Islands.
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