Connect with us
background

News

Southern Cross Club’s Fernando Yorke Wins Employee of the Year at 2015 Stingray Awards

Published

on

Resort receives Certificate of Excellence; a nomination for General Manager Jennifer Mills

The Southern Cross Club in Little Cayman was well represented at the annual Cayman Stingray Tourism Awards, hosted by the Cayman Islands Tourism Association (CITA). The awards ceremony, held at the Ritz Carlton in June, recognizes excellence in the various sectors of the hospitality industry. Every year CITA takes nominations from member companies and appoints a committee to determine the winners. Fernando Yorke, a 15-year veteran of the Southern Cross Club’s maintenance team, won the “Accommodations Employee of the Year” award and took home the coveted, glass-blown, cobalt blue Stingray Award.

“I was very surprised and also pleased when I found out that I had been nominated for the award. I was, however, really excited when I found out that I had actually won!” said Mr. Yorke. “It was a select group of very distinguished people from the industry and I felt very pleased to be part of it, and very proud to have won and be acknowledged in this way. Being recognized for my service and hard work means a lot to me, it is a very nice boost.”

“We are all very, very pleased for Fernando, and very proud of him,” said General Manager Jennifer Mills, who nominated Yorke. “I’ve worked with him for 12 years − 6 as General Manager of the resort − and there is not a single time when I have heard him complain. Fernando always gives 100% and he loves helping our guests, who in turn, enjoy visiting with him.”

Ms. Mills was nominated for ‘Accommodations Manager of the Year’ and the Southern Cross Club was awarded a Certificate of Excellence at the gala. She says Fernando Yorke’s hard work and commitment are essential to keeping the resort running smoothly. A skilled carpenter, he has built walkways, cabinets, sheds, porches, the pool deck and numerous other projects on the grounds.

“Because they operate quietly behind the scenes, maintenance team members are often the unsung heroes at the resort,” she says, “but without their efforts we would not be able to maintain our high level of efficiency giving our guests the good experience that brings them back.”

Fernando Yorke’s generosity doesn’t end when his workday is over. He helps his community in numerous ways, such as being involved with the island’s two major fundraisers – Mardis Gras and the Little Cayman Cookoff. Fernando pitches in wherever he’s needed: assisting with setup, raking the beach, hanging lights, arranging tables and chairs, filling and arranging coolers, building parade floats and more.

With no pastor or church committee stationed on Little Cayman, Fernando Yorke volunteers to be the church caretaker. He leads church services during the week and on special occasions, and also assists at the occasional wedding and memorials. Mr. Yorke also volunteers at the Little Cayman School each week, setting an example for the entire community.

“I am very happy here on Little Cayman and at the Southern Cross Club, which has been my home-from-home for 15 years. I enjoy the company of people and enjoy visiting with the guests, coworkers and other residents on the island,” he says. “I like the peace and quiet that Little Cayman offers. I do not need many distractions, as long as I am privileged to be able to go to church, then I am content.”

Jennifer Mills credits Fernando Yorke and the rest of the Southern Cross team for the resort’s Certificate of Excellence award. He explains the work ethic that has won him many friends among the resort staff, guests and residents of Little Cayman.

“I have a lot of respect for my place of work and my job so I set myself a high standard so that I make sure that I always give my best and am fully committed. I always say that whatever you do you should do it with your heart and give 100%. I enjoy my job and I feel very satisfied at the end of the day knowing that I have done my best and done a good job. I believe that hard work and good deeds are rewarded.”

About the Southern Cross Club

The casually sophisticated Southern Cross Club Fish & Dive Resort is Little Cayman’s original resort. It features 12 beachfront bungalows complete with a top-rated, professional in-house diving and fishing operation. A unique blend of rusticity and elegance the resort is often described as “Barefoot Luxury”.  Guests can expect friendly and diligent service, delicious food, inviting rooms with breath-taking views and a comfortable dive boat ― a few of the things that bring them back year after year.  Little Cayman is renowned for its breath-taking and pristine coral reefs and spectacular dive adventures. The resort’s beach-based location also provides flats fisherman with access to Bonefish and Permit just minutes away.

For reservations or more information:
Telephone: 1 (800) 899-CLUB (2582)
E-mail info@southerncrossclub.com
Website: www.southerncrossclub.com
Facebook:  www.facebook/SouthernCrossClub

Gear Reviews

Gear Review: Mares EOS LRZ Torch Range

Published

on

What does LRZ stand for I hear you ask? The answer is: LED lights, Rechargeable, Zoomable. Mares have created a versatile set of seven underwater lights in the new range to suit all needs and budgets.

I tested the most powerful of them – the EOS 32LRZ at Capernwray on a cold but bright spring day. I was diving with Alex Mustard, and so all the underwater images are by him, showing me trying out the torch in both the shallows and in some of the wrecks at this site.

All the torches in the new line have an LED visual battery charge indicator that allows you to keep the battery level under control.

Want to use it out of the water? No problem! The new EOS LRZ torches feature an innovative temperature control system that allows you to use them both underwater and on land. I can see myself using this on gloomy dog walks later in the year!

As you can see from the video I filmed just after getting back from a dive, the torch is easy to use, even with thick gloves in cold water. The zoomable light beam means that you can highlight a particular spot, or have a wide beam, which is great for both modeling for a photographer, and exploring different underwater environments.

The EOS 32LRZ has a powerful beam with 3200 lumens of power and 135 minutes of burn time. Perfect for some of the darker dives you can experience in the UK, but also for exploring overhead or enclosed environments. I easily got 2 long dives out of a single charge, and then was able to recharge it in my car using a USB cable on the way home, ready for the next day of diving.

The look and feel of these torches are great. In your hand you can feel the quality of the torches. They are solid and well built. They also look great. Each torch in the range comes with a padded case to keep them safe during transport.

For more, visit the Mares website by clicking here.

All underwater images by Alex Mustard

Continue Reading

Marine Life & Conservation

Reef-World launches Green Fins Japan!

Published

on

The Reef-World Foundation, the Onna Village Diving Association, the local government, and Oceana are delighted to announce that Japan is now the 14th country globally to implement the Green Fins initiative – a UN Environment Programme initiative. Onna Village in Okinawa is the first Japanese tourist destination to adopt Green Fins environmental standards to reduce the threats associated with diving and snorkelling on the marine environment.

Green Fins is piloted in Onna Village, Okinawa prefecture, an area renowned for its marine sports and has been working to protect its reefs for many years. Green Fins is implemented as part of the national Sustainable Development Goals project, which aims to manage and illustrate to the local industry how sustainable tourism can play a role in reef conservation. The economic benefits of the reefs benefit not only the fisheries industry but also the tourism industry as it has rocketed in recent decades.

If the project is successful – proving the value of sustainable tourism – the model has the potential to be escalated to a national level. A wide rollout would allow Reef-World to focus on uptake and expansion into other marine tourism and biodiversity hotspots across Japan. Green Fins implementation in Japan would provide practical solutions to many of the common problems faced in the area. It would also help to promote high standards for diving in the country. Improving the quality of the diving industry through Green Fins would demonstrate the added value of Onna Village’s tourism product. This, in turn, will encourage tourists to spend more time and money diving in the region.

Following a week of training by Reef-World (23 to 28 May 2022), Japan now has a national Green Fins team comprised of four fully certified Green Fins Assessors and two Green Fins Coordinators from Oceana and the local government. They will be responsible for recruiting, assessing, training and certifying dive and snorkel operators to become Green Fins members in the country. This involves providing training about the ecology and threats to coral reefs, simple and local everyday solutions to these threats and Green Fins’ environmental standards to dive and snorkel operators. Green Fins membership will help marine tourism operators improve their sustainability and prove they are working hard to follow environmental best practices as a way of attracting eco-minded tourists.

James Harvey, Director at The Reef-World Foundation, said: “We are really excited to finally introduce Green Fins in Japan. We have been planning this for almost three years, but the travel restrictions related to the pandemic hindered progress. The diving industry in Okinawa and the marine life upon which it has been built is so unique, it must be preserved for generations to come. The Okinawa diving community is very passionate about protecting their marine environment, and Green Fins has given them an opportunity to collectively work to reduce their environmental impact and pursue exemplary environmental standards.”

Diving and snorkelling related damage to sensitive marine ecosystems, including coral reefs, is becoming an increasingly significant issue. This damage makes them less likely to survive other local and wider stressors, such as overfishing or plastic debris and the effects of climate change. Based on robust individual assessments, the Green Fins initiative helps identify and mitigate these risks by providing environmental consultation and support to dive and snorkel operators. Through Green Fins implementation in Japan, Reef-World aims to reduce negative environmental impacts in the region by reaching 10 marine tourism operators, training 50 dive guides and raising awareness of sustainability best practices among 10,000 tourists in the first year.

Yuta Kawamoto, CEO of Oceana, said: “Green Fins will help to unify all the conservation efforts in Okinawa by applying the guidelines in many areas and raising tourists awareness. We hope this will increase the sustainable value in the diving industry and in turn increase the diving standards in the country.”

Green Fins is a UN Environment Programme initiative, internationally coordinated by The Reef-World Foundation, which aims to protect and conserve coral reefs through environmentally friendly guidelines to promote a sustainable diving and snorkelling tourism industry. Green Fins provides the only internationally recognised environmental standards for the diving and snorkelling industry and has a robust assessment system to measure compliance.

To date, four dive operators in Onna Village have joined the global network of 600+ trained and assessed Green Fins members. These are: Benthos Divers, Okinawa Diving Center, Arch Angel and Pink Marlin Club. There has also been significant interest from other operators, even those that are not located in Onna Village, for Green Fins training and assessment.

Suika Tsumita from Oceana said: “Green Fins serve as an important tool for local diving communities to move towards a more sustainable use of their dive sites; so that they can maintain their scenic beauty and biological richness to provide livelihoods for many generations to come.”

For more information, please visit www.reef-world.org or  www.greenfins.net/countries/japan. Dive and snorkel operators interested in signing up for Green Fins can find the membership application form at: www.greenfins.net/how-to-join.

Dive and snorkel operators in Japan interested in signing up to be Green Fins members can contact the Green Fins Japan team at japan@greenfins.net.

Continue Reading

E-Newsletter Sign up!

Competitions

Save up to 1/3 off a trip to Indonesia! Your chance to dive Bali, Komodo and Raja Ampat aboard the NEW luxury MY Emperor Harmoni for less! Launching in September 2022. Emperor Harmoni is Emperor Divers Indonesia’s brand new liveaboard. Built of Sulawesi Ironwood and offering a truly new experience to liveaboard holidays, experience a true sense of sailing the Indonesian seas in freedom, style, comfort and confidence with her two engines. Enjoy spacious diving and relaxation areas or relax with a massage on deck. Example price based on Bali departure to Komodo WAS £2900 / NOW from just £1995* per person based on sharing a twin luxury cabin including: 1 night in Bali before the boat departure with airport transfers One way flight from Labuan Bajo to Bali after the liveaboard with 20kgs baggage 7 nights onboard MY Emperor Harmoni with 3 meals a day, afternoon snacks, unlimited drinking water, tea & coffee All diving with guide, cylinders & weights, Marine Park & Port Fees Free Nitrox 1 cocktail party on a local island (weather allowing) Return airport transfers * Price excludes international flights, these can be quoted at the time of reservation Booking deadline: Subject to availability. Other Dates available - book before 30 September! Call Diverse Travel on 01473 852002 or email info@diversetravel.co.uk. More Less

Instagram Feed

Popular