Spain Tourism Board cashes in on India

April 1st, 2008 - 3:19 am ICT by admin  

New Delhi, April 1 (IANS) India is being touted as one of the fastest growing outbound tourism markets in the world and the Spain Tourism Board is leaving no stone unturned to cash in on it. “We are looking forward to increasing tourism in Spain. We have almost six billion tourists visiting us every year and we would like more people to visit the country from India,” Spain’s Ambassador to India Ion de la Riva said Monday.

He added that Spain attracts almost sixty million tourists every year and to boost the Indian outbound tourism in the country, it has been decided to open a National Tourist Office of Spain in Mumbai by the end of this year.

“Mumbai was selected for its good connectivity with the rest of India as well as for being a financial and economic hub and the main regional outbound market from India to Europe,” he said at the launch of the ‘Spanish Food Festival’ here at ‘The Claridges’ Monday evening.

The 10-day culinary fiesta will go on from April 1 to 10. It will allow the guests to choose from an a-la-carte selection of authentic vegetarian and non-vegetarian Spanish preparations or to go for a four course-tasting menu. Also on offer will be a selection of sangria and cava (wine-based drinks).

Peter J. Leitgeb, president and chief executive officer, The Claridges Hotels & Resorts said at the launch: “We are happy that Spain is our first partner country to organise a food festival at our Delhi hotel. I love Spain and I love its food and I am sure this culinary event will be an authentic affair.”

Two accomplished chefs - Josef Thomas Stork and Alexandra Denis Rios - have been especially flown in from Las Dunas Beach Hotel & Spa, Estepona, Spain to prepare the Spanish dishes.

On being asked about the similarities between the Indian and Spanish cuisine, Stork said that the most important similarities are the use of a lot of vegetables and spices.

The food festival will be held at the hotel’s Sevilla-Mediterranean restaurant.A Spanish singer and a guitarist would perform alongside to bring alive a complete Spanish experience.

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