AER President Riccardo Illy attended today the presentation -hosted by the Friuli Venezia Giulia region- of the project "Albergo Diffuso", a new regional scheme which is set to boost the local dimension of tourism. This presentation was held during the meeting of the Committee 'Economy and Regional development' of the Assembly of the European Regions (AER), which closes today in Amaro (Udine).
Friuli Venezia Giulia (President: Mr. Illy) aims at transforming traditional and still populated rural areas, which would otherwise be condemned to decline, into new tourist attractions and destinations. The revolutionary concept behind the project is that villages as a whole become "hotels": accommodation is spread among different houses, which are re-qualified and restructured, while a single reception point, located in the village centre, deals with the arrival and departure of guests.
This project, which can be translated and adapted to other European regions, is based on certain key principles, namely: guests are at the centre of the scheme, respect for the environment is a must, local culture and traditions have to be privileged. Last but not least the authenticity of the location is at the heart of the whole project. Tourists can get a real feeling of genuine places, where the memory of the old times lives on in the tales of local villagers.
The scheme can also provide employment opportunities to locals, as the "Borgo Soandri" example clearly shows: in this small village, located near the city of Udine, a cooperative has been set up, in order to manage the "Albergo Diffuso" project. Six people are currently employed there. Tourists can travel to the Borgo, spend a long weekend or a short holiday break, discover local tastes and flavours, learn about traditions and get in touch with people: this is the definition of a genuine holiday, far away from mass tourism. The beauty of local landscapes and mountains adds to the advantages of this scheme.
Enzo Marsilio, Regional Minister for Agriculture and Mountain Areas at Friuli Venezia Giulia, underlined the importance of this project for local communities, while Enrico Bertossi, Regional Minister for Production, stressed how this initiative fits perfectly with the general development of a tourism which is rapidly and constantly changing.
Regional representatives from 43 European regions from the AER were given today a full overview of the project, which is now ready to be "exported" and adapted to other European countries.
For more information on the "Albergo Diffuso" scheme please click on
www.clubalbergodiffuso.it and www.turismo.fvg.it
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