Cecilia Garland - Nov 16, 2014
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The municipality of Santiago de Tequila and the agave distillation industry will play a principal role in Mexico's strategy to attract tourists starting next year.

Claudia Ruíz Massieu Salinas, Mexico's Secretary of Tourism, announced that an international campaign will be launched under the name "How to Drink Tequila". She also said that Pueblo Mágico, i.e. towns that offer “magical experience” to the visitors, will be incorporated into tourism promotion programs in Great Britain, Spain, France, Italy, and other European countries.

"In all these locations we'll work to ensure that tequila as an expression of Mexican culture has a special place not only through a variety of tequila samples, but also through photo exhibitions, the generation of spaces for strategic conferences, as well as through tequila producers that will show the world their role in the construction of a regional and national identity through their product. We'll be doing all of this in the coming year," said the secretary during her visit to the municipality.

Jalisco’s Secretary of Tourism Enrique Ramos said that the two will work with the Cuervo Foundation to develop the Ciudad Inteligente in Tequila for 2020 to expand the municipality's tourist offer. 

The state government's current administration has invested more than 30 million pesos in tourist infrastructure in Tequila and plans an additional investment of 40 million pesos in further construction. The state official has explained that the project is being reviewed by the federal government, which has yet to define its economic contribution.

"I accompanied the company officials in Mexico City two weeks ago, who introduced themselves to the Federal Secretary of Tourism. Tequila is in superb conditions given its use of all the federal and state funds – as well as local government and company investments – invested into it in recent years.

According to Tequila's local government, at least 100 million pesos are needed for improvement work that would complement the Ciudad Inteligente.

Tequila Cuervo plans to invest 200 million dollars into the project, which includes a five-star hotel, a convention center, a cultural center, a commercial corridor, a cable car, and real estate development.

The State Secretary of Tourism stressed that the influx of visitors to Tequila is on the rise. Last year saw 800 million tourists and this year's 900 million have already exceeded that figure. To join forces with the federal government on this project, the Federal Secretary of Tourism Claudia Ruíz Massieu Salinas was named an Ambassador of the Tequila Industry.

The Secretary of Tourism has also introduced “Children on the Way”, which aims to encourage Mexico's primary school children to reflect on the importance of tourism to the economy, culture, and history of Mexico. The project springs from the necessity of making children aware of the value of tourist activity and the tourist-related job opportunities available all over Mexico as well as molding future promoters of the country.

The head of the agency, Claudia Ruíz Massieu, stressed that among the actions of the program, coordinated together with the Secretary of Public Education, will be the strengthening of the promotion of tourist culture among children as well as emphasizing the importance of the nation's environment, economy, and heritage.

In the first stage, the project will be targeted towards primary school children of the Federal District and afterwards towards students in the interior of the country, who can visit the interactive space.

During the tour, students and teachers will receive an introduction to the tourism sector from the Secretary of Tourism and the job opportunities the industry offers.

The children will also become familiar with and learn about the country's tourist destinations through the game "Mexico Adventure," in which they'll have to overcome several challenges to become expert tourists.

In addition, they can traverse the country virtually in 360-degree tours that include, among several other locations, beaches, heritage sites, and archaeological sites.

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