Having been recognised as among the best anywhere on earth by the World Ski Awards, Breaking Travel News here chats with Anton Bodner, chairman, and Christian Wörister, board member, at Bergbahn AG Kitzbühel, about the prestigious honour
Anton Bodner: World Ski Awards is the only global initiative to recognise, reward and celebrate excellence in ski tourism by voters.
Launched in 2013, World Ski Awards aims to drive up standards within the ski tourism industry by rewarding the organisations which are leaders in their field.
Votes are cast by professionals working within the ski industry and by the public (ski tourism consumers).
Therefore it is a great honour for us, and we are very glad to have won the World Ski Award for the seventh time in challenging times like these.
This honour would not be possible without the extraordinary work from all our colleagues during the whole year – so first off all we want to thank our staff and our partners.
BTN: This is the seventh consecutive time you have been honoured in this way – how do the trophies and titles help you promote the destination around the world?
Christian Wörister: The World Ski Award was developed in reaction to overwhelming demand from the ski industry for a program that was fair and transparent; a program with a mission to serve as the definitive benchmark of excellence, and to help to foster a new era of growth in ski tourism.
World Ski Award has created a range of special promotional tools to enable winners to maximise the impact of their World Ski Awards victory.
We use this offers in all means of advertising to strengthen our unique position around the world.
BTN: Kitzbühel is one of the most famous ski tourism destinations in Europe, if not the world. Just what is on offer at the destination that makes it so special?
CW: Kitzbühel is the most legendary sports town in the Alps with over 125 years of successful skiing history.
Kitzbühel – along with the holiday villages of Reith, Aurach and Jochberg - is known worldwide as a winter holiday destination with tradition and extraordinary charm.
Easy accessibility, long winters, a high snow guarantee, a wide range of sporting activities, unique events such as the famous Hahnenkamm Race and the highest level of comfort characterise the capital of winter sports.
The KitzSki area in Kitzbuehel and Kirchberg boasts 233 kilometres of perfectly prepared pistes, including 15 valley runs, for beginners, regular holiday skiers and advanced winter sports enthusiasts.
With our 57 state of the art lifts, we are one of Austria’s largest cable car companies.
Our cable cars offer the highest level of comfort, many of them including heated seats - they are pleasant, modern and stress-free.
Furthermore we operate more than 1,100 snowmaking machines to guarantee perfect snow conditions during the whole season which are fed by ten water reservoirs.
BTN: How would you describe the mood going into the 2020 ski season? Has news of a potential vaccine for Covid-19 lifted spirits?
AB: Actually we have a lockdown in Austria as well as in many other European countries.
So the possibility for people to come to ski in Kitzbuehel is actually quite low until Christmas.
We focus on intensifying our marketing activities in Austria and in south Germany since we are convinced, that as soon as it is approved by the government, people will pack their bags and spend their holidays skiing in Austria.
We take the health of our guests and staff very seriously.
Bergbahn Kitzbühel has taken all necessary measures and activities to protect the health of its customers in line with the regulatory requirements relating to the development of Covid-19.
Skiers will have more space at the ticket offices, in the winter cable cars and lifts, inns and mountain restaurants.
Protective masks are available at each ticket office to cover mouth and nose during the lift ride.
Dispensers of sanitiser are also available there.
Last but not least of course we all hope for a vaccine against Covid-19 within the next six month.
Find out more about visiting Kitzbühel on the official website.
Images: Michael Werlberger