Celebrating with Barbados:
2016 heralds 50 years of independence for Barbados and I was invited along to celebrate this landmark at the stylish White Space venue near Leicester Square. It’s this kind of tough reporting that I’m hoping to build a reputation for.
We were met with cocktails-I went for the ‘Dark and Stormy’ because that obviously matches my psychological makeup- made with rum and passion fruit.
I also got to try shots of deliciously spicy Mount Gay Rum, the oldest rum in the world dating back to 1703.
There were some tasty dishes to eat courtesy of Bajan born chef Jason Howard and music from Bajan composer John Roett who had written a stirring new anthem celebrating the country’s anniversary which received its premier at our event. We also got to meet Rosemary Parkinson, author of ‘Barbados Bu’n Bu’n’ – a two volume book reflecting the magic of Barbados.
We learnt that last year was a record year for tourism in the country with 218,000 visitors, an annual increase of 14%, and that with 12 BA winter flights weekly and with Virgin moving into the market there is real opportunity for growth. There are also many new hotels opening and Sandals in Barbados is doubling in size to 400 rooms.
There are plenty of events to enjoy on the island with the Cropover carnival running from the end of May to the end of July and for the 7th year November has been designated ‘culinary month’ in a celebration of food and rum. It was great fun to learn more about the mix of West African, Caribbean and British heritage, culture and cuisine that has made Barbados ‘paradise on earth’ and the Bajans have a real passion for the island as well as knowing how to throw a good party, now I just need to go!
For more information check the Discover Barbados site