The city of Madrid, in association with Iberia Express and the Spanish Tourism Office in Dublin, hosted a lunch in conjunction with the ITAA’s AGM in the Ballsbridge Hotel in Dublin. The event was also attended by HE Jose Maria Rodriguez-Coso, Ambassador of Spain to Ireland.
Speaking at the lunch, Gonzalo Ceballos, Managing Director, Spanish Tourism Office, Dublin, said that recent figures showed that 1.4 million Irish visitors will visit Spain this year. The country is now the third most visited destination in the world and is also the most competitive tourism destination according to the World Economic Forum – with a climate that delivers 240 days of sunshine each year.
Madrid’s Market Manager Ana Sostres gave a most informative presentation on the capital city. There are now 85 museums, with the Royal Palace hosting an exposition of paintings by Caravaggio. This will run from June to September and is a must visit for all art lovers.
Iberia was represented by Javier Hernandez Racionero, who briefed the trade on the latest Iberia Express developments, in particular the new Cork to Madrid service commencing in June. He pointed out that even though they are a low-cost carrier they have Business Class on the flights and that they also carry domestic pets, both in the hold and in the passenger cabin.