To entice SE Asians, Atout France finds inspiration in Leonardo da Vinci

Castles of Loire Valley

France’s Loire Valley region, which will in 2019 commemorate 500 years since the Renaissance with a year-long celebration, will take centre stage in Atout France’s international promotion efforts to attract more visitors including South-east Asian travellers.

2019 will be a celebration to mark the 500th anniversary of the death of Leonardo da Vinci at Amboise, the start of the construction of the Chateau of Chambord and the birth of Catherine de’ Medici in Florence.

Castles of Loire Valley

Francois Bonneau, Centre Val-de-Loire region president, speaking during a press conference during the recent 2018 Rendezvous en France travel market event in Paris, revealed that many events will be organised in castles and gardens in the Val-de-Loire region. He said: “There will be major exhibitions in the castles showcasing works of the past and current compositions.

“The 2019 celebrations will be much more than a simple commemoration. The programme will cover major themes of the Renaissance including heritage, arts and literature, music, architecture, gastronomy and craftsmanship.”

A cultural programme is currently being put together, composed of different highlights including a large travelling digital show mixing contemporary artistic and musical creation, an international architecture competition, guided tours, banquets, exhibitions and international symposiums, among others.

According to Atout France regional director – ASEAN, Morad Tayebi, the year-long celebration marks a wonderful opportunity to introduce destinations new to the South-east Asian market like the Val-de-Loire region, which is about an hour’s drive from Paris. The agency will also highlight Christian pilgrim travel in 2H2018.

Apart from the Lore Valley, Marseille, a city of Provence, will also gain greater exposure to international markets next year when it hosts Rendez-vous En France 2019 travel market.

Indonesia topped the list in 2017 with 180,000 arrivals, followed by Thailand, Malaysia, and Singapore at around 150,000 tourists each. In 2016, France received 160,000 visitors from Indonesia, 140,000 from Thailand, and around 120,000 visitors from Singapore and Malaysia each.

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