As reported yesterday by Travel Weekly, the Solomon Islands Visitors Bureau has been renamed Tourism Solomons.
Its new logo, an iconic dugout canoe in earthy tones, was revealed last night at the Mendana Hotel in Honiara, where the Honourable Rick Houenipwela, Prime Minister of Solomon Islands, officially launched the rebranding of the whole country as a travel destination.
That brand is: ‘Solomon Is.’
“The potential in our tourism industry has been largely untapped,” said the PM who has a target to double the country’s tourism earnings within 5-7 years to SBD 1billion (approx AUD$170m).
To support this aggressive target, Mr Houenipwela announced a number of infrastructure projects including improved telecommunications by late 2019 (an undersea cable will be built by the Australian government), a second international airport, an upgrade of the Honiara Highway and the Honiara national terminal.
The PM called for a seismic shift in the way the Solomon Islands approaches the tourism industry in the future, seeing it as the key to the country’s economic, infrastructure and social development.
“We require a combined effort between government, private sector partners and our overseas partners,” he said, adding that repositioning and relaunching the country’s brand must be authentic and therefore must align with both the country and its people.
‘Solomon Is.’ is, of course, a play on words. Their brand is their name.
Their brand promise reflects the country’s core values: extremely friendly; tremendous natural beauty; multicultural; highly diverse activities; less commercial; eco epic; raw with traditional lifestyles.
Different descriptors will follow the brand, depending on the location or experience being featured.
‘Solomon Is. Unspoilt with pictures of its pristine waters.’
‘Solomon Is. Unlimited adventure’ for water sports, including diving.
‘Solomon Is. Romance’ for secluded accommodation on tropical islands.
‘Solomon Is. Culture’ for cultural experiences with locals.
‘Solomon Is.’ is a very slick brand that has captured the essence of the Solomons, which is a number of very different destinations within one. The launch will be followed up by marketing visits to major markets including – and especially – Australia, in the next few weeks.
The new branding will also be shared with all Solomon Island tourism operators, government employees and those who do business with the government, as well as the public right across the Solomon Islands to ensure that all ‘tourist touch-points’ understand the part they can all play in bringing the ‘Solomon Is.’ brand to life.
This grateful correspondent who was given such a wonderful assignment in the middle of a cold Sydney winter has already extended the new brand: ‘Solomon Is. Thaw!’
Featured image credit: David Kirkland for Tourism Solomons