Hotelschool The Hague (HTH) and the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) have announced a groundbreaking partnership aimed at advancing sustainable practices and innovation in global tourism.

This collaboration will expand the Sustainable Hospitality Challenge (SHC) into the Caribbean, enhancing the platform's reach and impact. The SHC, renowned for inspiring students to develop creative solutions to sustainability challenges in the hospitality industry, will now bring its influential competition to the Caribbean.

This expansion leverages the region’s rich cultural diversity and unique perspectives, promising to infuse the competition with fresh, innovative ideas. By joining forces, HTH and CTO aim to create an inclusive environment where students from around the world can present their ideas and contribute to the global dialogue on sustainable tourism.

The partnership combines SHC’s extensive network with CTO’s commitment to positioning the Caribbean as a premier travel destination and leading sustainable tourism initiatives. This initiative provides Caribbean students with a global stage to showcase their expertise and innovation in tourism.

“This partnership represents a significant step forward in our mission to inspire and cultivate the next generation of leaders in sustainable hospitality,” said Paul Griep, Director of Alumni & Industry Relations at Hotelschool The Hague and Founder of SHC.

“We are thrilled to extend SHC into such a culturally rich and diverse region. At SHC, we believe the best innovations can come from anyone, anywhere. The Caribbean's wealth of tourism knowledge makes it an ideal environment for nurturing innovative solutions, and we eagerly anticipate the contributions of Caribbean students.”

Dona Regis-Prosper, CTO’s Secretary-General and Chief Executive Officer, highlighted the importance of this initiative for the Caribbean. “This collaboration marks a significant stride for the CTO, amplifying our ongoing commitment to fostering the next generation of Caribbean tourism leaders.

“It not only reinforces our dedication to engaging future leaders in tourism but also aligns with global and regional sustainability initiatives.” Regis-Prosper emphasized that the partnership aims to catalyse the development of innovative, resilient, equitable, and sustainable tourism products that resonate both locally and globally.

This new initiative builds on CTO’s existing youth development programs, such as the CTO Student Colloquium, which targets tertiary-level students from the Caribbean, and the CTO Regional Youth Congress for secondary school students aged 14 to 17. Notably, for the first time, the Caribbean will be represented at the SHC, with a team from the University of the West Indies Mona Campus participating in the semifinals in Miami this week.

The collaboration between HTH and CTO signals a shared dedication to driving sustainable innovation in the hospitality industry, empowering future leaders to foster positive change and create a lasting, sustainable legacy for generations to come.