About AHATA

AHATA is a non-profit association powered by its members. The 100-member companies run the breath of the tourism industry, from large hotel properties and timeshare resorts to activity companies and small service providers. The combined strength and knowledge of our members enables AHATA to move forward in enacting positive change within the industry.

At the end of the 1950s Aruba began to develop its tourism industry and saw the opening of its first luxurious hotel on Palm Beach: The Aruba Caribbean Hotel and Casino. More hotels followed and the Aruba Hotel Association (AHA) was founded in September 1965 and had the basic objective of promoting cooperation between its members and other agencies which were directly or indirectly involved in the welfare of the tourism industry on Aruba. As the years went by the association expanded its influence and in 1987 the AHA was renamed the Aruba Hotel and Tourism Association (AHATA) the name it goes by today.

AHATA functions on a variety of levels, always keeping in mind the end goal of seeking sustainable tourism for Aruba’s continued success.

  • Influencing the marketing of Aruba through AHATA’s relationship with the Aruba Tourism Authority.
  • Advocacy (issues including labor, fiscal, environment and cost of doing business).
  • Membership Support (offering opportunities in networking, education and a greater degree of visibility and industry participation).
  • Community Involvement (supporting various causes, organizing Coastal Clean Up and more).

AHATA has representation on: ATA Board of Directors, ATIA Board of Directors, Social Economic Council, Zoning Council, Aruba Hospitality & Security Foundation, Airlift Committee, ATA Marketing Committees, Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association, and Aruba Excellence Foundation.

AHATA will achieve these tasks by:

  • Having an active and engaged Board and membership working to achieve our vision.
  • Having an effective staff working for the association.
  • Having the resources to fund our efforts.
  • Having the legal framework to accomplish this, that is to have appropriate by laws and articles of association.

AHATA will adhere to the following core values

  • Commitment to the success of Aruba,
  • Accountability.
  • Respect and integrity.
  • Ethical behavior.
  • Membership/community equity.
  • Responsiveness, accessibility and efficiency.
  • High standards and professionalism.
  • A commitment to learning and education.
  • A commitment toward constant innovation.

In summary our four (4) main goals are:

  • To be the private sector marketing advocate for the tourism industry of Aruba.
  • To be its members primary resource for quality and professional membership services.
  • To be the public lobbyist for its membership.
  • To channel the collective strength of or membership to forward our industry’s interests.

Membership Benefits

“For the strength of the pack is the wolf, and the strength of the wolf is the pack” – Rudyard Kipling

Why should your company become a member of AHATA?

The economy of Aruba depends almost completely upon its tourism industry for its way of life. Current estimates show that the tourism industry supports 87% of all Aruba’s employment and 88% of the island’s GDP. This is not likely to change in the near future.

AHATA is the voice of Aruba’s tourism industry. It speaks for not only the hotels but all businesses which operate in the tourism sector. The larger the member base of AHATA, the more powerful a voice we have for representation.

AHATA works to support all its members for sustainable success. In today’s highly competitive climate it is critical that we make use of a shared knowledge base, benefit from practical solutions and be part of the latest developments that will positively affect the bottom line.

Advocacy in protection of the tourism industry’s interests

AHATA is Aruba’s number one advocate speaking on behalf of the private sector serving our tourism industry. The collective interests of our members are vigorously protected and promoted through participation, education and lobbying to influence proposed legislation. AHATA works as closely as possible with government agencies to represent the industry’s best interests.

Significant input to Aruba Tourism Authority marketing strategies

As a partner of the Aruba Tourism Authority, the AHATA has significant input into ATA’s marketing strategies that will be of benefit to our members. In addition, three of the seven ATA board members are nominated by AHATA.

Sales Conferences

Working jointly with the Aruba Tourism Authority, AHATA participates in the organization of productive sales events and travel agent familiarization trips.AHATA members have priority in such efforts.

Business information

We know any successful business needs current and reliable information. AHATA compiles a broad range of information that can assist you to plan your marketing activities, inventory, staffing and scheduling. This information is displayed on AHATA’s website www.ahata.com (or can be sent to you). Such information includes tourism performance data as well as a whole array of the latest legislation and tax changes as they impact your business. We also frequently send out articles, links and other sources of information about the tourism sector which we know you will find both interesting and helpful.

Networking opportunities

AHATA holds networking events to allow membership to meet and interact with each other in an informal setting. By attending these industry events you have the opportunity to access potential new clients for your business, forge new partnerships, make new friends, rekindle old ones and keep abreast of industry trends.

Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association Membership

By becoming an accommodations (active) partner you will become a member of the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association where you will have the opportunity to participate in their Marketplace, at their educational conferences and take advantage of this regional trade association’s valuable educational materials and programs. Allied members also benefit from information gained exclusively from the CHTA.

Aruba Hospitality & Security Foundation

AHATA has two representatives on the foundation, including the Chair position, with the goal to significantly influence improved safety for the tourist sector.

Casino Committee

AHATA supports a casino committee comprised of representatives from the major casinos in Aruba. This committee represents their interests and shares mutually beneficial information.

Aruba Trade and Industry Association

AHATA is represented on the board of ATIA, fostering a strong bond between the two employer organizations and allowing for synergy in lobbying efforts and analysis of economic development of our island.

A Voice in Zoning issues

AHATA is represented on the committee that advised the Minister of Infrastructure on zoning issues of Aruba.

Crisis Management Coordination

Both before and after an emergency AHATA is committed to providing guidance and support to help our members prepare for, and recover from, any emergency.

Committees

AHATA organizes many tourism-related committees. By participating actively in one of our committees you can be part of joint projects, find solutions to common problems, and be better informed and to make a difference.

Career Center

AHATA lists all available vacancies at member hotels and businesses including contact information.

Pension Fund Tourism Sector

AHATA offers access to the Pension Fund Tourism Sector, which provides associates a supplement to the government pension.

Training and Professional Development

AHATA sponsors various Training and Continuing Education seminars that focus on the most vital issues pertaining to Tourism.

AHATA Community Projects

AHATA has increasing involvement in critical community affairs, such as its Environmental Committee and its chairmanship of the Aruba Hospitality & Security Foundation, both helping to support our efforts to be a clean and safe destination.

As a member you will receive a membership plaque and a window decal for display showing your commitment to quality service and standards. As well you will have permission to use the AHATA logo on letterhead to lend support to the status of your company. For over 50 years, AHATA has been and continues to be the official private non-profit organization and national voice of Aruba’s hotel and tourism industry. Together we can achieve even greater success and ensure our position as a premier vacation and incentive destination.

Voting Rights

Active and Allied Members have voting rights in the General Assembly. Every Active and Allied member in good standing present in person or by Proxy at a General Assembly shall be entitled to vote. Voting shall be done by show of hands, but if a poll is demanded by any member, then voting shall be done by secret ballot. Each Active or Allied Member can cast one vote, except in the case of: a. Election of Board, b. Decisions regarding financial matters, other than membership dues. In the last two cases Active Members have an additional vote for each $10,000 in dues paid to the association.

The 2019 Board of Directors have been elected by the General Assembly and consists of 13 members; 11 Active Members and 2 Allied Members.

Chairman
Joe Najjar
La Cabana Beach Resort & Casino

Vice Chair
Paul Gielen
Renaissance Aruba Resort & Casino

2nd Vice Chair
Juan Blanco
RIU Palace Antilla

Treasurer
Ewald Biemans
Bucuti & Tara Beach Resort

Secretary
Warren Stanley
De Palm Corporation

Director
Javier Wolter
Caribbean Mercantile Bank

Director
Samuel Johnson
Barceló Aruba

Director
Richard Roy
Tropicana Aruba Resort & Casino

Director
Marin Bijl
Divi & Tamarijn All-Inclusive Beach Resorts

Director
Edgar Roelofs
Manchebo Beach Resort & Spa

Director
Karen Chastain
Aruba Marriott & Stellaris Casino

Director
Steve Redkoles
The Ritz-Carlton, Aruba

Director
Gabriel Castrillon
Hyatt Regency Aruba



Tisa LaSorte
President and CEO
Aruba Hotel & Tourism Association

Vanessa Rasmussen
Administrative & Membership Manager
Aruba Hotel & Tourism Association