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World Romance Travel Conference

May 24, 2018
  • Created with Sketch. Toronto, Ontario



The perfect event for romance travel professionals! 

Registration for this event is now CLOSED


We are excited to announce that IADWP will host the 2nd World Romance Travel Conference at The Westin Harbour Castle Hotel, Toronto on May 24, 2018!

After the first World Romance Travel Conference in 2016, the requests have increased asking us to return to Canada. This made it an easy decision for us to come home to Toronto and join our friends at Travel Market Place who asked us to partner with them to create a Romance Travel Program that will immediately follow their Travel Market Place East conference on May 22nd & 23rd at the Westin Harbour Castle Hotel.

Our World Romance Travel Conference will include educational sessions that will not only increase your knowledge, but also your profitability. Our speakers who are innovators in the industry will share practical advice and offer effective business strategies to increase sales. Also included will be several hours of networking opportunities during the trade show. 

This year we will be limited to approximately 100 Travel Agents and Wedding Planners as space is somewhat restricted.


May 24

Registration - 8AM - 8:25AM

Keeping The Spark Alive! You + Your Business = LOVE

Vanessa McGovern

Guatemala Romance

Anita Ixchel Beteta

Barbados Romance

Stacey Hutchinson

Fall In Love With The New Hotel Xcaret Mexico

Ana Gon

Mexico Tourism Performance at a Glance

Cesar Mendoza

Coffee Break

The Business of South Asian Destination Weddings:  Understanding the Couple, the Process, and the Expectations

Paras Mehta / Richha Arora / Gurminder Banga

Lunch and Trade Show

Building Your Brand Foundation

Laura Beauparlant

Oasis Resorts Loves You

Theresa Calcos

Future proof your business: Start thriving and stop surviving'

Celine Williams

The Marriage of Travel Agents & Wedding Planners - The Road to Success

Camille Jocsak / Monica Caeser

Raffles & Certification Presentations




Vanessa McGovern is forging new trails for travel consultants and creating higher standards and expectations for success for travel business owners across the world. Known for her enthusiastic approach to business, Vanessa stretches her clients expectations of what is possible for their business and life and inspires new ideas and strategies that get results. Vanessa is a sought after speaker, coach and mentor and has helped hundreds of travel consultants reach 7-figure sales mark and increase their profitability 10-fold. Vanessa’s experience in the industry ranges from working on onboard cruise ships, to launching and driving 8-figure revenue programs, leading franchise training classes, launching eLearning programs, hosting and leading countless training retreats, to growing the Global Institute for Travel Entrepreneurs (GIFTE) to its size today as the leader in travel agent training for marketing and business education to launching and co-founding Gifted Travel Network – a relevant and entrepreneurial focused US based host agency. When Vanessa isn’t busy coaching her clients and running Gifted Travel Network, she is a wife and Mother to two busy and beautiful kids (7 & 3) + owner to a Japanese Chin Puggy. Vanessa believes that travel can heal the world and is on a mission to change the way consumer view travel consultants + how travel consultants view themselves. She lives her life by design and inspires all those around her to do the same!


Theresa Calcos has over 20 years’ supplier experience in marketing, product development, promotion and special event group planning and operations, specifically in the destination wedding events travel market.
Theresa has recently joined Oasis Hotels & Resorts as the new Sales Manager of Leisure Groups and Weddings for North America. Theresa’s key emphasis is on promoting, implementing and supporting leisure group business ranging from weddings and honeymoons to bachelor/bachelorette getaways and other celebratory occasions. In addition to romance leisure travellers and special event groups, Theresa works closely with North American travel agents and tour operators to educate, promote and support the Oasis Hotels and Resorts O-Weddings program through webinars, trade shows and specialized FAM trips.
Prior to joining Oasis last December, Theresa had additional long term positions with luxury resort chains in the Dominican Republic as Director of Wedding Group Leisure Sales and Sales Manager for North and Central America. She was an integral part of both hotel chains romance product development, promotion and branding of their ongoing wedding programs.




Cesar Mendoza
Director, Mexico Tourism Board in Toronto

Cesar has worked for the Federal Government of Mexico for more than 20 years in technical and promotional areas.  He has coordinated all promotional efforts for the Mexico Tourism Board in Canada
since May of 2017.  Before returning to Canada, Cesar spent 3 years as Coordinator for Mexico's Tourism Board foreign Offices, as well as Tourism Attaché for the Embassy of Mexico in Washington, D.C.
Previously, he spent 4 years promoting Mexico in Western Canada as Director for the Mexico Tourism Office in Vancouver and 8 years at the Trade Commission of Mexico promoting Mexican exports and Canadian investment into Mexico. Cesar holds a Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering and an MBA from Mexico, as well as a Master in Information from the University of Toronto.


Stacey Hutchinson is currently Senior Business Development Officer at the Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc. (BTMI), having joined BTMI Canada in 2016.
She holds a B.A. degree in Spanish from the University Of The West Indies and has completed several courses in Marketing and Tourism Studies.
With a deep love for Foreign Languages and a strong passion for Tourism, Stacey has spent the last 16 years working in Tourism.
During her 13-year tenure in Barbados as Business Development Manager for the Caribbean & Latin America region at the Barbados Tourism Authority, Stacey’s work involved the development and implementation of numerous marketing campaigns region-wide.
She took the position of Senior Business Development Officer, Caribbean & Latin America at the more recently created Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc. (BTMI) in 2014, and now forms part of the BTMI Team in Canada.
Her personal interests include traveling, discovering new cultures, reading, music and enjoying family time as a mother of a teenager.




Ana Gon-Ryan
Chief Commercial Officer – Hotel Xcaret México

Ana joins Hotel Xcaret México after more than three decades in the travel industry, to launch a whole new concept in the Mexican Hotel Industry. Grupo Experiencias Xcaret is the management company of famous Eco-Theme Parks in Riviera Maya: Xcaret, Xel-ha, Xplor, Xenses and Xochimilco as well as tours to Xichen (Chichen Itza), Tulum and Cobá. Hotel Xcaret Mexico offers all parks and tours included as well as round trip transfers from Cancun airport in their innovated ALL FUN INCLUSIVE plan.
A long tenure at Grupo Posadas where she held different executive Sales & Marketing positions for more than two decades has formed Ana’s integral vision of today’s hotel distribution channels.
She also collaborated formerly for Wyndham Worldwide Corporation at their rental division, where she built a new distribution
platform for a rental program of Mexican leading vacation club company, Grupo Mayan. A solid operation background was acquired in the early years of her career as Operation Manager of inbound tour operation
companies. She also represented European incentive houses and international meeting planners, being responsible for the logistics
of international meetings & summits for the Mexico Foreign Ministry.
Ana graduated from a Hotel School in Mexico City and has a Master degree in Psicology. She also holds two Diplomas in Finance
and Hotel Management and received the General Manager Program Certification from Cornell University. Currently working on her
Conscious Business Coaching certification.


Camille Jocsak has 30-plus years experience as an entrepreneur, business consultant and
project manager. She is the Founder and President of C.L.A. Consulting Inc, working with
major corporations in the areas of designing, developing and delivering multi level training
programs, business consulting, and project management; Planned 2 Perfection Limited, a full
service Special Event and Fundraising planning and design firm, and Paradise 2 Perfection, a
TravelEdge Afilliate…A Virtuoso Agency helping clients choose the best destinations and
customized travel experiences with a focus on Luxury & Group travel as well International
Weddings & Event Planning. She has been recognized in the Events and Wedding Industries
for her Outstanding Client Services, Creativity and Contributions to the Industry.

Camille is an international educator, mentor, consultant, and keynote speaker for the Wedding
& Destination Travel Industries. She is a certified Global Travel Specialist as well as a member
of the International Live Events Association (ILEA), Canadian Society of Professional Event
Planners (CANSPEP), Women’s Speaker’s Association (WSA), Barbados Hotel & Tourism
Association (BHTA), International Association of Destination Wedding Professionals (IADWP),
Love Mexico and several non-profit organizations.

She has been a contributor in a number of publications and is a co-author of the book
“Transforming Lives One Story at a Time” currently on the best seller list.

With a passion for philanthropy Camille provides training and consulting to nonprofit
organizations through Planned 2 Perfection Limited and continues to play a key role in
raising funds and acquiring sponsors for local and national charities both on a professional and
volunteer basis. She is the recipient of multiple awards and accolades honouring her
dedication to the community and various charitable endeavours.

Camille is a mother of four daughters and a grandmother who currently resides with her
husband in Mississauga, Ontario, Canada.




Anita was born in Antigua Guatemala and studied for her degree in Tourist Marketing in Florence, Italy. After finishing school, she had the opportunity to work with The Peninsula Hotels in Chicago as the Department Manager in Food & Beverage. Anita currently works in the family business in Antigua as the Marketing Manager of 4 restaurants and a Boutique Hotel.

As a Tourism Specialist, Anita is very active in different Associations and Organizations that promote Guatemala.

She is Vice President of the Weddings & Honeymoons Trade Association, Co-Founder of “Wed In Guatemala”, and the Secretary on the Board of Directors of the "Chamber of Tourism, CAMTUR”.

Anita is actively involved with Promoting Guatemala and believes it is a hidden treasure yet to be discovered. She is proud of her country, and most importantly, her wish is to share the richness of Guatemala with the world. She believes Guatemala offers genuine hospitality and an unforgettable cultural experience.


Monica Caesar is an award winning, full-time destination wedding planner and owner of Aisle Plan Your Day based in Edmonton, Alberta. As one of Canada’s leading destination wedding experts, Monica’s high regard for detail and professionalism are ultimately the foundation that has built Aisle Plan Your Day into the seasoned wedding and event planning company that it is today. Her energetic personality engages her clients as she creates 'one-of-a-kind' weddings that are unique & distinctive in design. Aisle Plan Your Day has been a premier source for weddings since 2006, producing and executing flawless celebrations in locales spanning across Canada, to Mexico and all throughout the Caribbean. Monica is also an Instructor for the “Wedding Planners Institute of Canada” and trains wedding planners across Canada and throughout the Caribbean & Mexico in wedding planning. Monica has positioned herself as a sought after destination wedding expert, industry speaker and trainer. Monica travels the world sharing her experiences & expertise, attending industry conferences, reviewing hotel properties, private wedding venues & wedding packages. Her extensive travels allows her to stay up to date with the latest industry trends; while building an extensive network of top industry professionals worldwide.




Recognized as one of Canada’s top talents in event design, Paras Mehta (@parasevents) is the creative force behind Paras Events, creating highly stylized and luxurious social and corporate events internationally for the most discerning of clientele. Paras is known for his calm demeanour, sophisticated design aesthetic, and commitment to each and every client.

In just over a decade, Paras has garnered the acclaim of the Canadian Events Industry. He was awarded his first Canadian Event Industry Star Award at the age of 24 and a year later at age 25, was named ‘Event Designer of the Year’ by the Canadian Wedding Industry –one of the highest achievements in wedding design in Canada. Paras was recognized as the 2016 ‘Wedding Professional of the Year’ for his portfolio of work and contributions to the Canadian Event Industry and more recently, 2017 ‘Wedding Designer of the Year’ by the Wedding Planners Institute of Canada.

Paras Events is a past winner of the Brampton Outstanding Business Achievement Awards and is currently a ‘Consumer’s Choice Award’ recipient for 2017 and 2018.

Paras is a highly sought after designer known for his creativity, attention to detail, and innovative approach to design. His ability to conceptualize space in harmony with his client’s desires has made him the top choice for a host of corporations, organizations, foundations, top-tier hotels and resorts, event planners, and couples.


Richha Arora (@aroraevents) is an event architect and the principal planner and founder for one of the first South Asian and multicultural focused wedding planning firms in Toronto. Richha started her career as an event planner more than 10 years ago with a portfolio spanning corporate, non-profit, social, lifestyle and of course wedding and special events. Richha was amongst one of the first to drive and make the destination wedding market attainable and logistically feasible for the specialized needs and demands of the South Asian wedding market. Since then, her destination portfolio consists of work across the Caribbean, Latin & Central America as well as North and South America.

Richha has an Honours Business Management degree from the University of Toronto and an Event Management Certification from the faculty of Hospitality & Tourism at Ryerson University. She is also a certified wedding consultant with the Wedding Planning Institute of Canada and is Sandals Certified for Destination Management. Richha¹s attention to detail, expertise, network and ability to easily relate to each one of her clients are invaluable assets to her clients, making them confident in leaving their special day in her hands.

Arora Events
event architect and the principal planner and founder for one of the first South Asian and multicultural focused wedding planning firms in Toronto. Honours Business Management degree from the University of Toronto and an Event Management Certification from the faculty of Hospitality & Tourism at Ryerson University.




To Gurminder Banga (@g.banga), family is everything. Taking over the family business, he takes all the photography and life lessons he learned along the way and leading the way for the new era of the Banga Studios family. Photographer and a storyteller, this artist has a way of building a relationship with everything and everyone that he encounters, letting him in to capture an essence and an element they didn’t even know existed within themselves. Barstarzz all-star and the most chill vegan we know, GB is a believer in growth and stepping outside of your comfort zone. He knows how to push it to the limit and knows that when you reach for the moon, at least you’ll land among the stars.


Laura Beauparlant is an award-winning speaker, a college professor, a design and branding expert and the founder of Lab Creative. Her mission at Lab Creative is to help small business owners create strong, memorable brands that consistently attract their ideal clients. Laura has helped countless small business owners and entrepreneurs gain confidence and grow their businesses through unforgettable branding.




Céline Williams is an award-winning business strategist, design thinker and subject matter expert who is focused on delivering high-end solutions to clients around the world as part of her reVisionary Framework.

She has over 15 years experience working in and with fast growing organizations, small businesses, and entrepreneurs, and is a trusted advisor and thought leader on leadership, performance, culture, and combining designing thinking and business. Her innovative approach is an ideal mix of empathy, energy and edge - challenging her client’s beliefs and assumptions so they can take the powerful actions required to realize immediate success.

She values connection, authenticity, collaboration, and innovation and brings an unwavering sense of humour to everything that she does. She presents regularly on culture, leadership, failure, and connection, and is always happy to talk about the changing face of business.

World Romance Travel Conference

May 24, 2018
Westin Harbour Hotel