Amber Finken, is incentive trip coordinator for the Missouri Valley, IA-based insurance marketing organization Western Marketing, a company that has sponsored many incentive trips to sunny destinations. She says that the best one yet was the six-day, five-night agent trip to St. Thomas she recently planned for approximately 100 attendees.
The program got off to a strong start. “We had a very positive reaction overall to the announcement of St. Thomas as our 2013 incentive trip destination,” she explains. “The majority of our attendees prefer to travel to warm weather/beach destinations, and we had several people tell us the Virgin Islands were on their travel bucket list. A lot of people were also intrigued by the fact they would be able to island hop to other islands nearby and have the chance to explore several different destinations in one trip.”
She described other factors that made St. Thomas a good choice for the program. “First of all, St. Thomas is very easy to get to with a plethora of flight options available. We were able to get almost all of our attendees to the Virgin Islands and back with only one flight connection or less, making individual travel very quick and easy. Secondly, St. Thomas and the Virgin Islands offered an endless array of activities for our attendees to enjoy. From golf to deep-sea fishing to shopping to island hopping over to nearby St. John or the British Virgin Islands, there were plenty of opportunities available for everyone. And last but not least, both the scenery and cuisine of St. Thomas are unmatched throughout the entire Caribbean.”
Western Marketing chose the 450-room Frenchman’s Reef & Morning Star Marriott Beach Resort as the site of the program. Finken explains why. “Having just recently finished a $48 million renovation, Frenchman’s Reef was an easy choice to host our event. The completely remodeled guest rooms and common areas made our guests feel like they were staying at a brand new resort. The event space offered at the Marriott was exactly what we were looking for, and our cocktail party on Morningstar Beach was a huge hit among our attendees. The onsite destination management company (Adventure Center) was a welcome convenience for anyone wanting to book excursions or tours, and the hotel shuttle and water taxi made nearby downtown Charlotte Amalie easily accessible.”
The Frenchman’s Reef renovation project took six months and was completed in late 2011. In addition to transforming the resort’s exterior and all guest rooms, the construction project included the 4,000-sf Lazule Sea Spa. The beachfront resort, which is located just six miles from Cyril E. King Airport, offers stunning views of Charlotte Amalie Harbor. The property’s accommodations are divided into two areas: the Frenchman’s Reef Tower and the Morning Star Beach Club.