İstanbul set to be destination for world's wealthy

İstanbul is bidding to change Turkey's bad luck in failing to attract the world's richest travelers.

İstanbul set to be destination for world's wealthy
Experts worry that foreign tourists in Turkey are overwhelming ordinary locals and failing to make a significant contribution to the country's tourism revenues.

İstanbul is bidding to change Turkey's bad luck in failing to attract the world's richest travelers. İstanbul, the European Cultural Capital for 2010, had the second highest increase in tourism revenue worldwide this year, according to a report by international professional services firm Deloitte. In other words, some of the richest people in the world flocked to İstanbul this year.

The average increase in tourism revenue around the world was 6 percent, in contrast to almost 25 percent in Istanbul. Over the same period, the number of foreign visitors rose to 2, 277,000, up 23 percent over the previous year. Currently, the city has 57,000 beds that have been approved by the Tourism Ministry. Some 21,000 more are in hotels currently under construction.

Although the number of hotels in the city is constantly increasing, the occupancy rates never seem to fall, with İstanbul gradually gaining in prestige on the map of world tourism and leisure. Being voted the European Culture Capital 2010 has boosted prospects, resulting in its hosting more and more international events and conferences.

The increased advertising budget for the city allocated to the Culture and Tourism Ministry and a visit by Pope Benedict XVI in November of last year have drastically changed the profile of the city's tourists. The new tourists are wealthier, and usually from business circles, and this has pushed up accommodation prices in the city.

Today' Zaman
Last Mod: 09 Ağustos 2007, 12:43
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