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Tourism promotion innovations go from big data to art and culture

The Mayor of Malaga, Francisco de la Torre (r), with the head of the Royal Academy of Arts, Alex Rüger.
The Mayor of Malaga, Francisco de la Torre (r), with the head of the Royal Academy of Arts, Alex Rüger. / S. SALAS
  • Amadeus and Orange offer technology to better define tourist trends, while Malaga prepares to sponsor a Picasso exhibition at the Royal Academy of Arts

The annual World Travel Market is an event where trends are set in terms of the tourism industry. This year the Costa del Sol hopes to improve the focus of its tourism promotion thanks to a more precise tourist profile provided by big data, through agreements with Amadeus and Orange. A report produced by the former, for example, used data from half a million internet searches and 50,000 reservations.

Meanwhile the city of Malaga continues to be a hit with British tourists in search of a cultural experience thanks to its two stars: Picasso and Banderas.

The actor has recently been in the limelight thanks to the international success of the film Pain and Glory directed by Pedro Almodóvar. This attention has served as the perfect prelude to the opening this month of Banderas' new project, the Soho Caixabank theatre, and his production of the musical A Chorus Line.

"They don't know how lucky they are," said Craig Geles in the section at the WTM devoted to London's theatre scene. He was referring to Malaga and pointed out that the type of tourist who travels specifically to see a show is likely to spend several days in the destination and have mid to high spending power.

And Malaga's own genius Picasso continues to pull in visitors from all over the world. With this in mind the mayor of Malaga, Francisco de la Torre, visited the Royal Academy of Arts this week to finalise details of the city's sponsorship of a new exhibition to open there in January, Picasso and Paper.