LANZAROTE STEPS BACK TO THE FUTURE
by Norman Warwick
The Lanzarote TOURIST-delegation recently travelled to The International Tourism Trade Fair (Fitur 2021) held in Madrid, headed by the president of the island Cabildo (government), Dolores Corujo- She and the Minister of Tourism Promotion, Ángel Vázquez, will carry an intense and tight work agenda focused on reinforcing the promotion of Lanzarote as a safe and sustainable destination, a leader in innovation, and attaining a special place in the world for its unique landscape and environmental characteristics.
´We are going to focus on making the best of our destination known to tour operators in order to attract and support the re-activation of one of our essential and most beloved markets for us, such as the mainland,´ said the president during the traditional visit to the Lanzarote stand of the President of the Government of the Canary Islands, Ángel Víctor Torres, with which Fitur 2021 started recently.
This year´s meeting was nevertheless characterized by the absence of physical promotional supports and strongly marked by the security measures imposed by the pandemic.
“We have been carrying out tireless work since the beginning of the pandemic´, The President told Lancelot Digital, who carried a full report. ´We are making a great effort to reposition Lanzarote in the place it deserves: we are a special and different island, with an incomparable pairing ofnature and art, and we want to transfer to our markets that Lanzarote is a connected, intelligent, sustainable and safe tourist destination´.
For his part, Ángel Vázquez, Minster of Tourism for The Canary Islands, pointed out that ´the Spanish national market is the most closely related to our destination and is one of the most interesting for the island, due to its high level of spending and the search for a variety of experiences that Lanzarote offers, through the sectors that we have well defined, such as, in addition to the sustainable product, the gastronomic one, which takes on a specific weight of its own through Saborea Lanzarote, or the sports club, under the umbrella of European Sports Destination, among others ” .
In order to reinforce the foreseeable re-activation of national tourism in the face of the imminent summer season, the Lanzarote delegation, together with the SPEL-Turismo Lanzarote team, led by its CEO, Héctor Fernández, faced a period of intense activity furing the two days meeting that would see them attend more than 20 meetings with operators and national airlines, as well as Spanish Tourist Offices (OETs) of Premium international markets to discuss the strategy of attracting high-end tourism.
The Lanzarote delegation, then advanced its visit to Madrid in order to meet with the airline Iberia Express and the luxury travel agency Nuba, holding working meetings with representatives of the Vueling company as well as with the travel agencies Logitravel, Viajes El Corte Inglés, eDreams, Minube, Destinia.com, atralo.com and lastminute.com; the tour operators Travelplan and Soltour, the Avoris group; and the tourism service provider W2M (world2meet). The delegation also presented the complete offer of active tourism, rural and sports practice linked to nature to the Spanish Confederation of Travel Agencies (CEAV).
The Madrid tourist event also benefitted from the presence of the CEO of Lanzarote´s Centres of Arts, Culture & Tourism (CACTs,) Benjamín Perdomo, and the Councilor for Tourism of Tías, Mame Fernández, as well as the president of the Lanzarote Tourism Federation, Susana Pérez, as well as managers and representatives of the insular business sector.
As a sign of increased optimism for growth beyond the pandemic, the CEO of the Centers for Art, Culture and Tourism, Benjamín Perdomo, spoke of how ´Lanzarote residents would be able to enjoy the open day that we have prepared at the International Museum of Contemporary Art, MIAC-Castillo de San José, to celebrate International Museum Day, on Tuesday Tuesday, May 18th´.
The Tourist Centers and the Integrated Center for Professional Training Zonzamas would offer a series of guided visits by the students of the upper cycle ´Tourist Guide, Information and Assistance´ directed by the teacher, Eduardo Salas. ´ These visits will comply with all health regulations,´ he assured the delegation, ´but they will be the main protagonists of an experience with which we want to contribute to boosting the island’s cultural and tourist activity´.
So, on Tuesday 18th May, under the motto ´The future of museums: recover and reinvent´, MIAC showed a scenario in which the visual arts, heritage, culture and tourism worlds could come together. starting from the work of the artist Pancho Lasso, located in the room that the museum dedicates to this Lanzarote-born creator, reopened last March. Our cover picture at the top of this article shows work on display in the dedicated room.
The work of Pancho Lasso (Lanzarote, 1904 – Madrid, 1973) placed us in multiple settings around many of the concerns and drifts that the creators have raised in their different careers. The landscape, popular culture, nature and social commitment were sources of inspiration for Lasso, considered the first artist to emerge on the island as part of the first artistic avant-gardes in Spain.
Museum Day 2021 also summoned us to the ´fortress of hunger´, as the Castillo de San José was popularly named, to explore the relationships between historical heritage, culture and tourism, and recover Manrique’s idea of turning it into ´a splendid rotating luminous and permanent diorama´.
We here at Sidetracks and Detours believe that art does not, cannot, work in isolation but we recognise that arts and commerce have never been soul mates. We are, however, emerging from desperate times, and we applaud this suggestion to build sustainable bridges between the two sectors as Lanzarote steps back into the future !