Members of the diplomatic community in Jamaica will host one dinner each month, part of an innovative initiative to enhance gastronomy tourism locally and increase visitor arrivals. The move complements an ongoing thrust to bolster the continued development of Devon House as Jamaica’s first Gastronomy Centre.
Minister of Tourism Edmund Bartlett named Devon House Jamaica’s first Gastronomy Centre in 2017. Since then, his ministry and the Devon House Development Company Limited — which manages the centuries-old heritage site — have teamed up to get the facility on the radar of discerning foodies.
According to Bartlett, they “have worked steadfastly in establishing the gastronomy centre to bring visitors from overseas and persons from across the island to the historic property to enjoy the culinary delights of Jamaica”.
He added, “A big part of this is to involve the diplomatic community of Jamaica to enable the exposure of international cuisine at Devon House.”
To kick-start the programme, the first in a series of dinners involving the diplomatic community was recently hosted at the facility.
“This special dinner was organised to expose members of the Diplomatic Corps to the unique culinary offerings of Jamaica and at the same time to engage their interests in participating in this international gastronomic exposure, which will see every country represented in Jamaica taking on one dinner arrangement per month and inviting the rest of the world to come and enjoy the culinary delights of their own country,” he said.
Bartlett believes the programme has great marketing potential.
“We are very excited about this venture. We had a wonderful first dinner involving representatives from some 10 countries including the US, UK, Canada, South Africa and China to name a few, and my colleague Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Kamina Johnson Smith, also participated in this groundbreaking event,” he added.