Well the word is well and truly out. Winning a HITA – or just setting your sights on one – not only yields industry and consumer recognition but also boosts the quality of the tourism product, generates team spirit and stimulates local community support.
This year’s record entry for the Highlands and Islands Tourism Awards reflects their growing practical value, and tomorrow’s announcement of the shortlists across 15 categories will reveal the elite participants for 2015.
Lucid is delighted to have helped achieve the near-40 per cent increase in entries and nominations in our first year working with HITA.
As well as promoting the awards and individual entrants via traditional media, we have stimulated conversations through social media among the candidates, friendly rivals and others in the sector.
The HITA judges had to analyse nearly 200 entries and nominations this year, from diverse mainland and island localities.
Tomorrow, 44 of those will be another step nearer to getting their hands on one of the iconic stainless steel piper trophies. Then, at the 13 November HITA gala night in Inverness’s Drumossie Hotel, they will find out if they have triumphed in their category.
These best of the best will go on to represent the Highlands and Islands in the Scottish Thistle Awards, whose winners are announced next year.
Lucid is delighted to be presenting HITA’s Best Sporting Event award. This is particularly apt for us given our work with Castle Stuart Golf Links, which will host the Scottish Open next year for the fourth time in six years. We also work with Highland Golf Links, which includes Castle Stuart, The Nairn Golf Club and Royal Dornoch Golf Club as well as three major hotels in the Highlands, to promote quality Stay and Play packages for golfing visitors.
We well understand the critical importance of tourism for the Highlands and Islands and, having viewed the standard of entries this year, we know that the finalists and winners will be fitting ambassadors for the industry and its wellbeing.