The Spanish magazine “Desarrollo” has named the Majorca businessman Juan Vives Cerdá “Tourism Personality of the Year”. Since 1973 Juan Vives has been Vice Chairman of the Spanish hotel company Sol Meliá.
The award was decided by a panel comprising distinguished members of the tourism trade press in the Balearic Islands in recognition of his outstanding career, during which he has proved to be one of the driving forces behind Spanish tourism development and its hotel business.
Juan Vives has recently announced his decision to retire from the business and will receive the award at an event to be held today in Madrid to be attended by a large number of the Spanish tourism industry’s most distinguished representatives.
The Chairman of Sol Meliá, Gabriel Escarrer Juliá, and all of the company’s employees, have expressed their “most sincere appreciation and gratitude to a great professional and, above all, a magnificent person who, through his wisdom and vision of the future, has played a decisive role in the development of our company”.
Escarrer also adds, “the thing that has always most impressed me about Juan has been his personal strength and integrity, thanks to which we have been able to overcome all kinds of situations.”
Juan Vives began to work at only 15 years of age in the Viajes Meliá travel agency, where he later went on to occupy several different positions. In 1961 he joined Sol Meliá, becoming Front Desk Manager in one of the company’s first hotels. He later rose through the ranks to become Managing Director in 1970 and then Vice Chairman in 1973, a position he has held until his retirement.
Juan Vives has always been widely recognised as one of the Spanish tourism industry’s finest operators and is held in great esteem by fellow professionals, not least his active role in creating the Balearic Island Hotel Association.