Taleb Rifai, the Secretary General of the UNWTO (United Nations World Tourism Organization), announced at the 20th General Assembly of the UNWTO at the Royal Livingstone Resort in Victoria Falls, Zambia, that Elsia Grandcourt, the former CEO of the Seychelles Tourism Board, had been appointed as the new Director for Africa at the UNWTO.
The announcement was made in the presence of Minister Alain St.Ange, the Seychelles Minister responsible for Tourism and Culture, and all the other Ministers from Africa during the Commission for Africa (CAF) Session of the UNWTO.
Elsia Grandcourt studied Hotel Management at the SATEC Hospitality Training Centre in Singapore and has worked in hotels, an airline, and a destination management company (DMC) before moving in at the Seychelles Tourism Board as Deputy CEO in 2010 to work alongside Alain St.Ange, who was at that time CEO of the Seychelles Tourism Board.
It was in 2012 that Elsia Grandcourt was promoted to the position of CEO of the Seychelles Tourism Board after Alain St.Ange was appointed the Seychelles Minister responsible for Tourism and Culture.
Elsia Grandcourt replaces Ousmane Ndiaye who had been the Regional Director for Africa at the UNWTO for many years.
Speaking to the press after the official announcement of the appointment of Elsia Grandcourt was made by Taleb Rifai, the Secretary General of the UNWTO, the Seychelles Minister responsible for Tourism and Culture, Alain St.Ange, said that he was proud to see a Seychellois national appointed to such an important position at the UNWTO, “It is great for Seychelles, and I am proud,” Minister St.Ange said.
The Seychelles Tourism Board remains one body that is today in the limelight because of their ongoing successes. Seychelles continues to see positive growth in the visitor arrival numbers with year-to-date figures showing a 14% growth over the 2012 figures.
Seychelles tourism has been working hard on regional integration, with the islands now holding the Presidency of the Indian Ocean Vanilla Islands Regional Organization and they have been actively promoting twin-center holiday options with the African mainland using the tag line “From the Big Five of Africa…to the Best Five of the Seychelles.” It was in the Seychelles in 2012 that the very successful Routes AFrica conference was organized.
Minister Alain St.Ange of the Seychelles is regarded as having been the mentor for Elsia Grandcourt during her time at the Seychelles Tourism Board.