The AHATA Excellence Awards, 2023

It was a very important occasion for the Aruba hospitality sector, the AHATA Awards of Excellence, 2023.

The festive event at the Renaissance Convention Center recognized 43 most deserving, passionate Individuals, admirably dedicated to serving our guests and driving the island’s economy.

The great tourism representatives received a trophy, a certificate and an envelope, and remained on stage with AHATA President & CEO Tisa LaSorte for a picture opportunity.

And the winners are:


Jesslyne Croes, Supervisor, Colombian Emeralds International

While overseeing the retail staff at Colombian Emeralds for the past 9 years, this Supervisor has ensured smooth day-to-day operations. From Merchandising to Customer Satisfaction, her strategies are a recipe for success. Actively showing interest in learning, she has grown immensely into the professional she is today.

Thank you for all you do for your team and the store’s daily operations.

Ryan Richardson, Assistant Project Manager, Divi & Tamarijn All Inclusive Resorts

Joining Divi & Tamarijn Beach Resorts in 2021 as an Assistant Project Manager, this honoree has demonstrated excellence, commitment, and exceptional project management skills. His instrumental role in various projects, such as the renovation of hotel rooms, the establishment of a new restaurant, and the development of significant infrastructure, highlight his versatility and effectiveness.

Thank you for your significant contributions to the Hospitality Industry.

Diana Kelly, Sales Agent, El Tours

This Sales Agent started at EL Tours 2 years ago. In that time, she quickly became an essential part of the company. She receives amazing positive feedback and reviews thanks to her wonderful customer service. She is one of the top agents in terms of sales. Always working with a smile, her kindness has earned her the love of both customers and colleagues.

Thank you for your service. Keep on spreading the love for what you do!

Diana de la Cruz Garcia, housekeeper, The Boardwalk Boutique Hotel Aruba

Starting at the Boardwalk in 2018 as Housekeeper, her commitment and strong sense of ownership in her role have been remarkable. Over the past 5 years, she has meticulously tended her casitas and guests, crafting an environment that radiates warmth and comfort. Her embodiment of the hotel’s core values is evident in every interaction, making her a true prime candidate for this recognition.

We wish you continued success. Keep up the amazing work!

Magaly Gonzalez, Bartender, Mannchebo Beach Resort & Spa

Her journey at Manchebo Beach Resort began almost 14 years ago as a bartender, she is now the lead bartender of Pega Pega Beach Bar & Grill. She is one of Manchebo’s best bartenders and was chosen as the hotel’s 2022 Employee of the Year. She always goes beyond her duties to serve customers, and her excellent communication and teamwork skills make a pleasant work environment for everyone.

Congratulations! Your accomplishments are noteworthy!

Alberto Tromp, Reservations Supervisor, De Palm Tours

As a Reservations Supervisor for De Palm Tours, Alberto demonstrates a strong aptitude for customer service and sales techniques. His outstanding performance secured him various promotions through the years. In his current role, his ability to streamline tasks and reports has significantly improved operational efficiency. This, together with his personal and professional growth, make him an exemplary individual for his company.

Congratulations, you, and your work are both invaluable!

Alejandro Osario Caro, Public Relations Manager, RIU Palace Antillas

Joining the RIU Palace Antillas as a Front Desk Agent in 2018, this honoree’s leadership potential, together with his work ethic and consistency got him various promotions, and he’s now the Public Relations Manager. His strong interpersonal skills and adaptability contribute to the company’s success. Besides his superb performance, he is a shining example of a leader who always supports and mentors his team.

Cheers to your amazing work!

Leonte Amaya Vergel, Brewhouse Supervisor, Balashi Brewery

After joining Balashi Brewery 13 years ago as a Brewhouse Operator, he successfully applied his academic background in Chemical Engineering and Brewing Technology, with his work experience to help Balashi become the number 1 beer on the island. His passion and commitment to his job got him a promotion in 2016, becoming the Brewhouse Supervisor. He’s an outstanding employee, always giving his all, and effectively overseeing and training his team.

Congratulations, and thank you for your wonderful work producing Aruba’s favorite beers!

Jose Deluque Roys, Bartender, The Ritz-Carlton Aruba

In his role as bartender at The Ritz-Carlton, Aruba, he’s shown an extraordinary level of craft and creativity. Since he joined the company 7 years ago, his famous drinks and personalized service have elevated customer experience, providing memorable moments that guests cherish for a lifetime. His ability to connect with guests, diligence, and care are special and has been a cornerstone of the brand’s success.

Your amazing service and passion play an essential role in shaping the future of our tourism industry.

Genoveva Gonzales, Public Relations Manager, RIU Palace Aruba

Her growth at the RIU Palace Aruba over the past 8 years has set a benchmark for others to follow. Starting at the Front Desk, she now creates unforgettable guest experiences as a Public Relations Manager. Her positive attitude and ability to collaborate have customers repeatedly mentioning her as their reason to come back.

We admire your perseverance and dedication!

Deidre Greene, Front Office Manager, Renaissance Wind Creek Aruba Resort

Starting last year as a Front Office Manager at Renaissance Wind Creek Aruba Resort, this manager has strongly impacted the Front Office team and operations in a positive manner in just a short amount of time. A highly committed expert who possesses a deep understanding of the industry and guests. She serves as the main service ambassador for VIP arrivals, managing groups and improving the welcoming process for high-profile guests.

Thank you so much for your professionalism, and congratulations on your award!

Elvia Zievinger, Beauty Advisor, Penha Aruba

This honoree began working at Penha 7 years ago, where she has been doing an incredible job. She is known for her charming smile, and for always giving the best of herself to each customer, ensuring a fantastic shopping experience. It goes without saying that her customer service skills are impeccable.

Keep shining, and congratulations on your recognition.

Paola Thielman Torres, Executive Housekeeper, Radisson Blu Aruba

The Radisson Blu team welcomed her as an Executive Housekeeper almost 2 years ago. She has exceptional leadership skills, professionalism, and dedication which leads to outstanding performance within the Housekeeping Department. She has a remarkable ability to balance the operational, financial, and human resource aspects of her role.

Paola was presented with her award upon her return to Aruba,

Steve Fuentes, VIP Host & Concierge, First Class Experience

One of the first employees to start with First Class Experience Aruba 7 years ago, this honoree has excelled as a VIP Host, Team Coordinator, and Supervisor of the Concierge desk at Aruba’s Private Airport. He is known for going the extra mile for all clients. From receiving them with a warm welcome to providing them with all the ins and outs of our island. He’s been the host with the most social media referrals several times, illustrating his phenomenal service.

You are a great ambassador for our island. Keep bringing Aruba’s name up high!

Enmanuel Antonio, Engineering Supervisor, La Cabana Beach Resort & Casino

He started as a Shift Engineer at La Cabana 27 years ago. Today he is an Engineering Supervisor, who not only works hard but also uplifts others on the job. His knowledge reaches beyond his department, having made substantial impacts throughout the resort. His exemplary leadership and dedication set a high standard for all. He’s also played a pivotal role as the inaugural president of the Eagle Team Committee, dedicated to fostering associate support.

Thank you for your years of stellar service in our industry!

Gabriel Amell, Tour Guide, Kini Kini Transfer & Tours

He joined Kini Kini Transfer & Tours as a Chauffeur and later became a Tour Guide and has won the company’s Tour Guide of the Year award twice. From numerous amazing reviews to a genuine passion for tourism, guests greatly cherish him. His fellow colleagues also have a lot of appreciation for him and describe him as someone with a jolly personality who is always eager to help.

A big heartfelt congratulations on tonight’s recognition, you deserve it!

Samantha Bedard, Cook Helper, Hyatt Place Aruba Airport

A remarkable person who came on board the Hyatt Place team as a contractor for events. Her eagerness to learn made her get involved in kitchen operations and was hired by the property as a Steward, later promoted to Cook Helper, a role she took over with determination. She is the first to arrive every morning at 5 AM and consistently ensures that the breakfast buffet and cafeteria meals run perfectly for all to enjoy.

Tonight, we honor your dedication to your profession. Continue to strive because the sky is the limit!

Ludwig Croes, Marketing Executive, Marriott Vacation Club Aruba

This honoree began as a Marketing Executive 2 years ago at Marriott Vacation Club. In his role, he embodies a high standard of customer service and is adept at solving problems. A resourceful person, who quickly became the go-to person for everything Aruba. His fun demeanor creates what his colleagues call the “Ludwig effect”. He’s awarded tonight for being an outstanding ambassador for both his company and our beloved island.

Continue to advance and do exceptional work!

Eddy Rivera, Restaurant Manager, Holiday Inn Resort Aruba

Starting as a Waiter in 1999, he was promoted to various positions, and is now a Restaurant Manager at Holiday Inn Resort. As a leader, restaurant service scores went up and have stayed consistently high. Sales and employee satisfaction have also increased, and he has proven to be a firm and fair manager who cares about the development of his team.

Your achievements these past 24 years are certainly impressive!

Ronald Werleman, Production Coordinator, Elite Production & Entertainment

Ronald has been an example of growth and improvement ever since he started at Elite Productions & Entertainment 6 years ago. His technical expertise is integral to setting up and maintaining audio-visual equipment, and his problem-solving skills and attention to detail especially when under pressure are admirable. He is a key member of Elite and had a profound impact on their success and the experiences of those they serve.

Congratulations! Thank you for your indispensable work.

Belineda “Belinda” Dorismond, Kitchen Supervisor, Eagle Aruba Resort

Eagle Aruba Resort quickly saw her potential and promoted her from First Cook to Kitchen Supervisor. She is someone who prioritizes their professional development and is currently training for the position of Food and Beverage Supervisor. She is an amazing example of a good team player, and her strong communication skills stand out in her role. She guarantees her department is well managed, and always seeks the best for the company and her colleagues.

We wish you continued success and all the best training for your new position!

Sonia de Nobrega, Assistant Financial Controller, Courtyard by Marriott Aruba

Starting at The Mill Resort in 1991, this next honoree gained experience in different departments, and today she is the Assistant Financial Controller at Courtyard by Marriott. Her reliability, perfect attendance, and a strong sense of responsibility have been invaluable and made her the face of what is now Courtyard by Marriott.

Cheers for your excellent work! You are a role model to us all.

Janice Rasco, Waitress, Embassy Suites by Hilton Aruba

From the first day she began her journey at the Embassy Suites, her passion and affection for the job and the hotel were undeniable. Besides exceptional guest service, her love for the job led her to become a certified Department Influencer, where she actively contributes to the development and motivation of her fellow team members. She was selected as the Team Member of the Month for June 2023 because of her consistent positive impact at work.

Your enthusiasm and positive energy are an inspiration to all!

Ivanon Lacrum, Dispatch leader, Calloway Corporation

This devoted employee started as a Driver Helper at Calloway Corporation in 2010. His spirit of service, and the desire to learn more pushed him forward in his career. He was promoted to Driver after a few years, where he polished his skills and received a promotion to Dispatch Leader. His notorious service has gotten him written compliments for the company’s airline clients. A proactive, hard worker who understands and cooperates with his crew to ensure great work every time.

Thank you for your impeccable work!


Angela Pochettino, Concierge, Bucuti & Tara Beach Resort

Since she started working at Bucuti & Tara 4 years ago she has gone far and beyond as a concierge and established a reputation for fostering meaningful connections with both colleagues and guests. She has demonstrated an extraordinary level of care and dedication. Her ability to anticipate and meet the needs of guests has created seamless experiences for all.

Thank you and congratulations. Your amazing service and contributions to your team deserve to be celebrated!


Bruce Henriquez, Protection Supervisor, ARX protective Service

We next honor someone who has performed amazingly over the last 2.5 years at ARX Protective Service. His work ethic is exceptional while overseeing security teams, mentoring new recruits, and ensuring safety protocols. He displays unwavering commitment, respect, and a strong sense of responsibility while performing his safeguarding duties. In an industry where challenges are the norm, he is never backed down and always faces every challenge head-on.

Way to go! You are phenomenal.


Gilbert Flemming, Executive Chef, Divi Aruba Phoenix Beach Resort

The next hardworking recipient was quickly promoted from Executive Sous Chef to Executive Chef at Divi Phoenix in a period of 2 years. With his positive attitude and adeptness, this individual has made a remarkable impact on his department, having improved quality, presentation, and consistency. Displaying empathy towards his team members, he has fostered a positive work environment and improved morale.

Tonight, you are receiving this worthy recognition! Continue to advance and do excellent work.


Veruschka Kock Silberie, Reservation Agent, Brickell Bay Beach Club Hotel.

A talented honoree employed at Brickell Bay who has consistently provided spectacular service in the last 5 years as a Reservation Agent. She pays a lot of attention to every detail during the reservation process. She even goes out of her way to make sure guests have knowledge about our island, so they can enjoy a wonderful vacation. She successfully embodies the spirit of hospitality in a remarkable way.

We give our heartfelt congratulations on her recognition tonight!  Keep up the fantastic work.


Christian Götze, Sous Chef, Bohemian Bar & restaurant

This passionate and creative person was promoted within 3 years to the Sous Chef position at Bohemian Bar & Restaurant. His work ethic is an example to the team and his eye for detail in every dish is unmatched. His dedication and focus have made him an invaluable member of the culinary team.

Thank you for inspiring us with your passion and for sharing your talent for the culinary arts.


Denise Renee Harris, Waitress, Amsterdam Manor Beach Resort

With a big smile and welcoming personality, this amazing waitress has worked at the Amsterdam Manor for two years, where she always sets the perfect tone for an extraordinary dining experience. She is known for going the extra mile not only for guests, but her colleagues as well. Always extending her compassion and support to everyone in the team.

Congratulations on this well-deserved honor!


Carlos Hilayder Cano, Head of Maintenance Department, Turibana Plaza

He started at Turibana Plaza over 4 years ago as the first Maintenance employee, he is now the Head of the Maintenance Department. He leads a team of colleagues who admire and respect his devotion to his work. Always ready to find solutions to any problems and provide a helping hand where needed. A loyal employee, who is the true star on this organization.

We wish you many more years of success and excellent work!


Raquel Vrolijk Casino Manager, Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino

We recognize today an outstanding person who began as an All-Around Dealer at Aruba Marriott Resort’s Stellaris Casino 25 years ago. Through the years she kept growing, becoming the youngest Pit Boss in the casino and today she is the Casino Manager. As a leader, she has made structural adjustments that have helped grow her department’s revenue to historical records and has positively impacted the work-life balance of her team.

Congratulations! Your grit and continued focus are truly inspiring.


Yanika Thode Laurens, Bar & Dining Room Attendant, Infini Restaurant

This dedicated individual works at Infini Restaurant as a Bar and Dining Room Attendant, where her service makes dining more than just a meal, it is a cherished memory. Her positivity radiates throughout the restaurant, where many see a cup half-empty, she always sees it half-full, inspiring her colleagues with her infectious optimism. And let’s not forget about her cocktails, a delightful testament to her many talents.

Keep looking for ways to make your guests smile and perform random acts of kindness!


Tisha Powell, Loss Prevention Officer, Marriott Aruba Surf Club

Commencing her journey 8 years ago at the Marriott Surf Club, as a security contractor her ongoing professionalism and flexibility have propelled her to an acting security supervisor position. In the most difficult situations, she is always there with courage and integrity. A perfect example of this is how her response and skills were able to save the life of a guest.

We deeply appreciate your outstanding qualities and the positive impact you bring to our community.


Claudia Castellanos, Food & Beverage Supervisor, Barcelo Aruba

This honoree started her career at Barceló Aruba 17 years ago as a Waitress, and thanks to her drive and professional growth, she was promoted to Food and Beverage Supervisor. She shows tireless efforts and leadership skills which won her the 2022 Barceló Aruba Employee of the Year award, and the award for the employee with the most mentions on social networks.

We thank you for your magnificent work!

Jonathan Ostil, Chef De Cuisine, Poke Ono Restaurant

As a Chef de Cuisine, he’s been the heart of Poké Ono’s culinary operations since 2021. From astute staffing decisions to meticulous purchasing and smooth operations, his proficiency is unmistakable. Besides scouting for the perfect blend of quality and value for menu ingredients, he always motivates and assists his team. His passion for presentation sets him apart, taking immense pride in ensuring each plate is a masterpiece.

Your leadership and talent make you a shining star in our industry.


Edna Montilme, Public Area Attendant. Hyatt Regency Aruba Resort Spa & Casino

This hardworking and collaborative recipient started at Hyatt Regency in 2005 as a Public Area Attendant. As a result of her unceasing efforts, efficiency, sense of responsibility, and caring nature she is admired by colleagues and guests alike. Always eager to lend a hand and enhance her department, she serves as a source of inspiration for everyone.

You are a true team player and invaluable to our tourism industry!


Dielvis Jesus Mavo Bermudez, Technician, Professional Pest Control

Five years ago, a devoted employee joined Professional Pest Control as a Technician. His great interest in the company immediately made him stand out. He possesses a high level of knowledge, which has proven to be essential to his company’s daily operations. His attention to clients, kindness, and readiness to help are qualities his colleagues and clients admire.

You rock, keep up the fantastic work!


Joshual Gomez, Senior Banquet Supervisor, Marriott Aruba Ocean Club

Today we highlight a remarkable person who started his journey as a Part-Time Banquet Server. Now he holds the Senior Banquet Supervisor position at Marriott’s Aruba Ocean Club. In this role, he has received the hotel’s Supervisor of the Year 2022 award and played a pivotal role in propelling the events department to the #1 position in the premium segment across the entire CALA region.

We wish you lots of continued success in your career.


Jeniffer Fuente Lobo Franken, Head of Housekeeping Department, Aramis Real Estate Construction & Hospitality

A talented employee, who has proven to be an asset to Aramis Real Estate as the Head of the Housekeeping Department. She completely reorganized and improved her department by implementing trainings, improving policies and procedures, and is always looking for ways to keep her team members happy and motivated.

Thank you for all the outstanding contributions to your team and department.


Jaime Arturo Jimenez, General Supervisor, Azia Restaurant & Lounge

Starting his career with eagerness to excel at any task, he has grown from a Set-up Crew member back in 2012 to now being Azia’s General Supervisor for the past 3 years. Tonight, we honor his hard work, leadership, passion for hospitality, and his amazing contributions to his team and company. Consistency is the key to success in his career.

Congratulations on your well-deserved honor this evening!


Gomara Lugo, Senior Food & Beverage Supervisor, Divi Village

She has maintained an unshakeable, upbeat attitude since the very first day she began working at Divi Village. Her ambition has made her their Senior Food and Beverage Supervisor since 2015. Her motto is to always strive to give guests the best service. Her passion for the Food and Beverage department is commendable and she has remained eager to learn, making her the well-rounded professional she is today.

You are amazing! Keep shining, and congratulations on your recognition.


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November 29, 2023
Rona Coster