“We know that in 2021 we have a big challenge ahead… Our goal is to give the opportunity to travelers to live the Greek experience when the context of the pandemic will allow us to do so and we strongly believe that we are going to make it happen really soon,” GNTO Secretary General Dimitris Fragakis said during an online press conference.
Underlining that Greece will open to tourism with the full implementation of health protocols, Fragakis referred to the country’s campaign and motto for 2021 that was unveiled by the Greek tourism minister on the opening day of ITB.
According to the organization’s secretary general, Greece’s new campaign is based on GNTO’s three-year action plan that will develop in close cooperation with the country’s institutional stakeholders.
“We see an opportunity in the crisis that we experienced in the last year; an opportunity to redefine our position with a new narrative beyond the ‘sea and sun’ model. We put authenticity, special identity and of course our people at the center of this strategy,” he said.
Fragakis went on to note that Greece can offer numerous experiences, including gastronomy and mountain/diving activities. But most of all, he said, the country’s people are “eager” to offer unique experiences to visitors.
“These are exceptional experiences that the traveler will find only in Greece, all year around. We are moving towards adopting a sustainable model that extends seasonality beyond summertime through inclusive experiences from more destinations in Greece. Each and every Greek destination has a unique story to tell,” the GNTO’s secretary general said and concluded by highlighting Greece’s new slogan.
“Our message is clear and pure, it’s simple. After all the bad experiences we had in the past year, it is time for new happy experiences. And everything that you look for is in Greece… All you want is Greece,” he said.
Greek startups, boutique hotels at ITB Berlin NOW 2021
One of the world’s leading tourism trade shows, ITB Berlin this year is being held as an entirely virtual event as the situation surrounding the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic still remains difficult, particularly for the travel and tourism industry.
The GNTO is representing Greece at the show with a virtual stand. Co-exhibitors at the stand include 50 hotels active in the German market; 80 travel agencies and event organizers; and 40 regions and municipalities.
The GNTO this year at ITB is hosting 60 Greek boutique hotels (certified by HCH’s Boutique Hotels program) and 20 startup companies (from the chamber’s start-up incubator, CapsuleT) that offer innovative products.
“Here at the the ITB Berlin international fair we have the opportunity to highlight Greece that innovates and comes forward with confidence,” HCH President Alexandros Vassilikos said, speaking during the press conference.
According to Vassilikos, the chamber’s two actions – the “Boutique Hotels” certification program and the CapsuleT Travel & Hospitality Accelerator – that are being introduced at ITB, mark two of the strategic pillars for the “day after” for Greek tourism.
During the virtual ITB Berlin show, “visitors” at the Greek stand have the opportunity to meet HCH’s expanding startups network, Greece’s innovative travel startup ecosystem; and also become acquainted with a variety of Boutique Hotels all over the country, smaller hotels renowned for their architectural beauty and respect of the environment around them.
“The future of Greek hospitality is intertwined with quality and smart digital technology. Timely adaptation to the new data that is being formed, as the world is changing drastically, is the key that will open the doors of new accomplishments,” he said.
The ITB Berlin NOW 2021 event will run until March 12.