Ministers visit Seychelles Tourism Academy-‘New hotel school needs to deliver what the industry needs’


Ministers St Ange and Mondon are guided on a tour of the construction site

The minister was speaking to a group of people after the visit done on Friday at the construction site, where the old school is based.

Minister St Ange was accompanied by the Minister for Education Macsuzy Mondon, and at the site met Seychelles Tourism Board (STB) chief executive Elsia Grandcourt, representatives of destination management companies, members of the STA board of directors, and the project’s business consultants.

The delegation got to see the commercial kitchen, which once completed will be able to cater for 1,000 people, library, bar, store, classes, restaurant that can cater for up to 250 people, and the management faculty.

They also got to see other facilities such as the Hotel D’Application – a 3-star training hotel with 60 bedrooms which will cater for 30 foreign students and 30 clients. It will have two 5-star villas with swimming pools and an international conference centre.

After touring the site, all gathered at a provisional meeting room, where they got an overview of the project from lecturer Diana Quatre.

She explained that they are aiming to be recognised as a leading hospitality and tourism training institute in the region, reputed for its programmes on offer and the quality of its graduates.

“Our key objectives are to increase student output in order to better fulfil industry needs, diversify, expand and upgrade training programmes to be more aligned to industry needs – locally and globally – establish secure affiliations with local and international reputed hotels and tourism training schools and institutions; and give students the practical and industry experiences through its hotel and other facilities,” she said.

The new structure of the STA will see it operate from two main entities. The first is the business entity which will comprise the 30-bedroom hotel, 30-bedroom hostel for international students, business centre, public restaurant and bar, public lounge, banqueting centre, and a wellness and spa centre.

The other unit is the academic entity, which will have all the current seven courses on offer, development of new courses, introduction of tailor-made in-service training courses for the industry, online courses, and international qualifications from the City & Guilds International of London Institute.

Minister St Ange spoke of the importance of having the population aware of the importance of the tourism industry as well as their roles in contributing to it.

“We cannot afford to have a population who only hears of tourism on the television, radio or read about it in the newspaper and do not understand how important it is to the country’s economic development,” he said.

“We need to now have a school that depicts this pillar of our economy, and a school that works in tandem with the Ministry of Education. We also need to start thinking of other aspects of tourism that we need to have training for, such as catering for the growing number of swimming pools, landscaping of hotel gardens and so on.”

The construction of the new STA is being done by the Yangtze Construction Company and the project is expected to be completed in November 2014.