The iconic Christ the Redeemer statue overlooking the city of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil will ‘go green’ for the first time ever, to mark St Patrick’s Day in 2013. The announcement was made yesterday by President Michael D Higgins, the Archbishop of Rio de Janeiro Orani João Tempesta, and Tourism Ireland Chief executive Niall Gibbons, during the President’s official visit to South America, during which he promoted ‘The Gathering Ireland 2013’.
For the past three years, Tourism Ireland has arranged for major landmarks and iconic sites around the world to ‘go green’ on St Patrick’s Day – including the London Eye, Burj Al Arab in Dubai, Table Mountain in South Africa and Niagara Falls in the US – kicking off the organisation’s annual promotional drive around the world.
Niall Gibbons said: “Our ‘greening’ initiative has really captured the imagination of people everywhere and we are delighted to announce the addition of the famous South American landmark – the Christ the Redeemer statue – for 2013, the year of ‘The Gathering’.
“Our aim is to bring a smile to the world and to convey the message that Ireland offers the warmest of welcomes and tremendous fun, as well as wonderful scenery and rich and diverse cultural activities. Our St Patrick’s programme will span Britain, Mainland Europe, North America, and Australia, as well as emerging tourism markets such as Brazil, China and India.”