From left to right: Eric Feudenthaler, Secrets Maroma; Heather Lawrence, The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua; John Mullen, Apple Vacations; Annette Schmid, Riu Hotels and Resorts; Javier Aranda, Riviera Maya Promotion Board; Emilio Huhn, Zoetry Paraiso de la BonitaDia de los Muertos chocolates at Sahagun
During its annual trade show, Apple Vacations announced the recipients of the 2009 Crystal Apple Awards and Golden Apple Awards to a room filled with more than 1,000 agents, as well as owners and representatives from 130 hotels, airline carriers and tourism boards.
The Crystal and Golden Apple Awards recognize hotels and destinations that have earned exceptional ratings from nearly 300,000 Vacation Satisfaction Questionnaires completed by clients who have taken an Apple Vacation. The highest-rated hotels and resorts in Mexico, the Caribbean and Hawaii were honored with a Golden Apple Award.
“When you’re comparing hotels and one has a Golden Apple, it gives the agent self-confidence that the consumer is going to have a good time there. We know how high the standards of Golden Apple Hotels are, and that puts our minds at ease,” said Chris Russo, president and chairman of the American Society of Travel Agents and owner of Travel Partners in Broomfield, Colo.
Top-rated hotels and destinations in six categories received the Crystal Apple Award. Among them was Mexico’s Riviera Maya for the Best Destination Category. Secrets Resorts & Spas took home the award for Best Chain, while the Best Staff and Service, Hawaii title went to The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua.
Other Best Staff and Service awards went to Zoetry Paraiso de la Bonita Riviera Maya and Riu Palace Tropical Bay, Jamaica.
From left to right: Eric Feudenthaler, Secrets Maroma; Heather Lawrence, The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua; John Mullen, Apple Vacations; Annette Schmid, Riu Hotels and Resorts; Javier Aranda, Riviera Maya Promotion Board; Emilio Huhn, Zoetry Paraiso de la Bonita