Many Caribbean islands celebrate their emancipation from colonial times through joyous Carnival fetes during the summer – highlighted by parades and balls with people dressing in masque-ade, music, and dancing.
When COVID-19 forced the cancelation of the 2021 parties for the second year in a row, Caribbean duty free retailer Rouge Duty Free decided to step in with its own mini-carnivals in its stores in St. Thomas, St. Croix, Grenada and the Cayman Islands one Saturday at the end of July.
The results in good will and sales that the promotion generated were far beyond expectations, said Raymond Kattoura, whose company Duty Free & Travel Retail Group Inc. manages the business for Rouge Duty Free Retail Caribe, along with his Grand Duty Free store in Grand Cayman.
All the celebrations took place outside the stores and followed current health protocols. The company made arrangements to use parking lots or other outside space in front of its stores, brought in steel drummers and DJ’s and gave each store a budget for decorations and hors d’oeuvre.
“Although tourism is still restricted on many islands, people came for the party and stayed to shop. It ended up being like a little Christmas in July,” reported Kattoura.
Here TMI shares some images from the Rouge Carnivals.