On Saturday the group of experts arrived in La Reunion and met for the first time in Saint-Gilles.
On Sunday, the panel was hosted at the Golf du Bassin Bleu (owned CBo Territoria) and has been welcomed by the representative of the Deputy Mayor of Saint Paul and the CEO of CBo Territoria. This morning has allowed the panelists INTA to present themselves to the local panelists. A series of presentations (geographic, economic and social context of the island, City of St. Paul, CBo Territoria  and Isautier group) gave the panelists an approach of the context and environment of the territory on several fronts and scale. The strengths and weaknesses of La Reunion have been discussed, opportunities and threats set.

The panel has realized the strategic importance to have a vision for the tourism development this island. Technical visits on the afternoon stressed the potential for tourism: the wild south and the outskirts of the volcano (Piton de la Fournaise), various resorts, the Saga of Rum (Rum History Museum) to understand the importance of the culture of the sugar cane in the island and the Palm Hotel which has a very interesting concept of lodges. The goal of the day was reached: the panelists felt and measured the interest to express their vision and bring their differences on the issue of tourism in La Reunion.

 

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Panel INTA and local team

Bassin Bleu Golf on top of Saint Gilles seaside reasort

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Lava from the 2007 eruption of the volcano Piton de la Fournaise

PALM Hotel - Grande Ile -South of La Réunion

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"Saga du Rhum" Museum

"Saga du Rhum" Museum

 

 

 

On Monday, the panelist have been welcomed by the Mayor of Saint-Paul (City where the touristic area Saint-Gilles belongs to) and had the opportunity to hear from the local authorities what are the issues on tourism development for the west coast of the island and for the whole island.
A press conference has been held to communicate on the process in which the Panel is taking part.
You can download articles of the regional press here.

On the afternoon, they started interviewing local actors of the tourism sector.The creation of a cluster of tourism in the island is very new and show the will of the professionals of this sector to have a transversal and common vision about tourism development. The Panel met in the afternoon some of the professionals who are part of this Club and they clearly identified their needs regarding the tourism development mostly in terms of public policy and training.
They followed interviewing local actors until Wednesday afternoon.

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Press Conference in the City Hall of Saint-Paul with the Lady Mayor, the President of the Tourism Club, CEOs of Isautier Group and CBo Territoria and INTA

City Hall square, Saint-Paul

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Saint-Paul bay

Touristic offers in the seaside resort: Copacabana restaurant, Saint-Gilles

 

On Wednesday and Thursday, they started working on the recommendations they had to present on Friday afternoon. They met the Club of Tourism, to benchmark experiences from abroad, especially from Guam, New Zealand, Aruba and Azores, islands where the tourism economy is a major asset for their development.
On Friday afternoon, they presented their recommendations, in front of all the interviewees of the week, the Mayor of Saint-Paul and the Vice-President of the Region.
The Panel has recommended to have a global tourism development strategy including the West and the South of the island where the tourism potential is very high. They stressed the fact that a global image of the island has to be created to brand the whole island as a destination (blue for the sea, green for the mid-hills and red for the volcano). Then, they focused on the potentialities of two touristic projects in the West (CBo Territoria) and in the South (Isautier Group) that could be the axis of development for tourism sector, not only on the seaside area but on the hights of the island as well.
The main politic decision-makers (Saint-Paul municipality where Saint-Gilles seaside belongs, and the Region, in charge of the economic and tourism development) agreed on the priority to focus on the tourism development and to support public-private initiatives to enhance economic development through sustainable tourism project involving local population and innovative concepts.

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Working session for the preparation of the recommendations

The Panel met the Club of Tourism, new cluster for tourism professional of the island

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Interviews session

Strategic tourism development in La Reunion: the touristic arc from North to South and from the sea to the mountains and volcanos.

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Huguette Bello, MP and Mayor of the City of Saint-Paul reacting to the recommendations of the Panel

Fabienne Couapel, Vice-President of the Region of La Reunion closing the meeting


 

 

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