Lion Country Safari wins tourism award

Lion Country Safari was awarded Palm Beach County’s top tourism prize on Friday, beating out two other competitors for the coveted title.

Crews from the television series Born to Explore with Richard Wiese visit Lion Country on Jan. 29 (photo provided)

Lion Country Safari, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary, was given the county’s 2017 Providencia Award during gathering at the Lake Worth Casino Building & Beach Complex. Kravis Center for the Performing Arts and the Boca Raton Resort & Club were finalists for the annual award.

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“These three finalists are outstanding examples of the world class tourism assets that make The Palm Beaches such a desirable tourism destination; a legendary resort, a first class performing arts center and one of the most unique animal attractions anywhere in the country,” said Jorge Pesquera, President and CEO of Discover The Palm Beaches, the county’s tourism marketing organization.

The award is presented to an individual or organization that has a major impact on tourism.

The award is named after a Spanish ship that sank off the coast in the 1880s. The crew sold its cargo of coconuts to people who planted them along the waterfront. Ultimately, that’s how Palm Beach got its name.