88 89 The Magdalena is open year-round with an average 58 percent occupancy rate. One of its main differentiators from other resorts is the PGA-designed golf course. Murphy says, “The Se- nior European Tour has played there twice, giving us notoriety and credibility as an international course, and it’s our leveraging point of difference in Tobago. The other key difference is our restau- rants.We offer fine dining; a main restaurant serving breakfast/lunch/dinner; and an excellent seafood restaurant by the water with a variety of dining options.” And who could resist the gorgeous scenic plantation grounds with footpaths for hiking and complimentary bicycles for exploring. Among the many other fabulous amenities are three swimming pools (one adult) and a diving center. Guests are encouraged to go to the Pigeon Point tourist attraction, and Store Bay and Scarborough for shopping. Tobago, fortunately, does not have security issues, and people are free to go out and experience the ambience, rather than be seques- tered in a hotel complex like some resorts. According to Murphy, marketing initiatives are “fairly conventional. A large part of today’s mar- ket is driven by social media and we are heavily engaged with OTAs (Online Travel Agents) and we have about 60 contracts with individual tour op- erators from Latin America, the U.S., U.K, Europe, and Scandinavia that are interested in selling Tobago, whether it’s for diving, weddings, groups, individual travellers - these are all avenues that we continue to promote.We re-sign each year with those tour operators. And, of course, our own PREFERRED VENDOR n Malabar Farms Food Service Ltd. MAGDALENA GRAND BEACH & GOLF RESORT, TOBAGO website is an avenue we’re updating consistently to be user-friendly.We encourage people through various promotions, especially locally, to either book through an OTA, or a tour operator, or direct- ly through our website.We have a great feature where you can package air travel and accommo- dations yourself through a web system we have in place. To act as your own travel agent, if you like. “To sum it up, we have a high-quality hotel with a friendly staff. It’s a secure, safe, and very peaceful staycation experience at a unique lo- cation. Tobago, from a destination perspective, is how the Caribbean was in times past. It has huge potential; laid back but not too slow; an interest- ing balance between the hustle and bustle of a commercial city like Trinidad (20 minutes away), and Tobago’s blissful quiet. That’s how we encour- age people to come and stay with us. Experience our great natural resources in the Caribbean ‘the way it used to be’. . .the way it should be.”