Following the signing of an official three-year hosting deal with the Office National Marocain du Tourisme, World Travel Awards has unveiled the host cities for its 2014, 2015, and 2016 Grand Finals.
On November 29th this year the showcase Grand Final will head to the Palais de Congres, part of the exclusive Palmerais Golf Palace, in the country’s pre-eminent tourism destination of Marrakech.
The spiritual heart of Morocco, Fez, will pick up the mantel in 2015, while economic powerhouse Casablanca will follow in 2016.
Tourism operators in all three cities are expected to enjoy a boost in their global exposure given the attention World Travel Awards commands.
The announcement of the host cities was made by World Travel Awards President Graham Cooke, Moroccan Minister of Tourism, His Excellency Dr. Lahcen Haddad, and Mohammed Arkobi, Chairman of Innovate Marketing Solutions, following a fact finding mission to the country.
World Travel Awards president Graham Cooke said: “Preparations for the World Travel Awards Grand Final 2014 are now taking shape, with the Palmerais Golf Palace selected to host the exclusive event.
“One of the iconic hotels in Marrakech, the property is the beating heart of Moroccan tourism and an ideal host.”
He added: “Today we are also revealing that Fez will be honoured with hosting rights for the 2015 Grand Final, while we will be headed to Casablanca the following year for the 2016 Grand Final.
“With Moroccan tourism presently benefiting from a secure political environment, visionary political leadership and high-levels of private investment, World Travel Awards is looking forward to showcasing the best of Morocco over this three year period.”
The Grand Final 2014 will take place in the beautiful city of Marrakech.
The city is a pearl polished by history, with a tradition of hospitality which, for centuries, has known how to welcome visitors.
Luxury shops, tearooms and cafés adorn the streets of the ‘red city’ as it effortlessly reconciles its prestigious past with contemporary dynamism.
A worthy host of the World Travel Awards Grand Final, Marrakech is a city full of life and enthusiasm.
The imperial city of Fez will welcome World Travel Awards for the Grand Final 2015.
The city is considered the capital of traditional Moroccan culture; a cradle of knowledge, for which its superb medersas are a flamboyant symbol. Its UNESCO listed medinas are famous around the globe, forming part of the best-preserved old city in the Arab world.
Peppered with mosques, madrassas and palaces, its trades and crafts have barely changed for centuries, while its heritage nourishes a community of poets, musicians and intellectuals.
Not to be outdone, Casablanca is the hotbed of Moroccan commerce. A thriving port community, it is the largest city in the Maghreb and one of the largest cities in Africa, both economically and demographically.
Dynamic, yet relaxed, everything happens in Casablanca and its vibrancy is infectious.
Moroccan minister of tourism, Dr. Lahcen Haddad, offered his support to the event.
He explained: “Over the last decade, Morocco has become a major North African tourist destination, it aims to be among the top 20 destinations worldwide by the year 2020.
“To host the next three editions of the World Travel Awards Grand Final in Marrakech, Fez and Casablanca, is a great opportunity for the Kingdom to promote these historical destinations, and further enhance their visibility in a global scale.
“Morocco has considerable assets, which will guarantee the World Travel Awards participants the chance to live a unique and unprecedented experience; the event will undoubtedly reward hospitality industry actors who have chosen excellence and quality; I hope many of them will apply and win.”
The World Travel Awards Grand Final 2014 will follow a series of regional Gala Ceremonies, with events this year scheduled for Athens (Greece), Quito (Ecuador), Abuja (Nigeria), New Delhi (India), and the fantastic holiday island of Anguilla in the Caribbean.
The 2014 Grand Tour kicked off at the fabulous JW Marriott Marquis Dubai in May.
World Travel Awards was established in 1993 to acknowledge, reward and celebrate excellence across all sectors of the tourism industry.
Today, the WTA brand is recognised globally as the ultimate hallmark of quality, with winners setting the benchmark to which all others aspire.
“We are delighted to be able to bring the WTA to morocco,” enthused Dr. Mohammed Arkobi, chairman of Innovate Marketing Solutions.
“We are true believers that morocco will be among top 20 tourist destinations in the world shortly.
“We believe in Moroccan hospitality and Moroccan ability.
“Today, the WTA brand is recognised globally as the ultimate hallmark of quality, with winners setting the benchmark to which all others aspire.”