The first edition in Cuba of the South American Hotel and Tourism Investment Conference (SAHIC) was a great updating meeting.
Mr. Díaz noted that the event, held in the Caribbean for the first time and whose tenth edition in South America will take place in Argentina on September 13-14, allowed learning about foreign investment opportunities not only in tourism but also in the cruise and air transportation sectors in Cuba, and about the new trends in the design, construction and marketing of hotels.
For his part, Sahic President and Founder Arturo García summarized the significance of the meeting with one word: thanks.
INVESTING IN CUBA
At the meeting, José Daniel Alonso, general director of Development, Investments and Business at the Cuban Ministry of Tourism (MINTUR), referred to the current offer of 19 hotel development projects in the modality of joint ventures, 75 contracts for the administration and commercialization of new and existing hotels, and two contracts for the administration and commercialization of marinas.
Until March 2017, the official said, Cuba had signed 82 administration contracts with 19 foreign hotel chains from eight countries.
Those contracts include 41,079 rooms that account for 61.6 percent of the country's total accommodation capacity, 87 percent of which are in four- and five-star hotels.
According to Alonso, tourism prioritizes foreign investments in destinations like Havana, Cienfuegos, Las Tunas and Holguín by already-defined tour operators.
By 2030, the expert added, Cuba is expected to have developed 224 establishments and 32 enlargement projects, as well as 24 golf courses with 11 hotels associated to them, 23 nautical facilities and marinas, and 47 recreation and adventure centers.
Before being decorated by the organizing committee for SAHIC-Cuba, due to his extraordinary contribution to the development of tourism, Havana Historian Eusebio Leal gave a lecture on the Cuban capital's potential, based on its heritage, traditions and stones, which have been restored through a social project that has translated into public awareness.
According to Leal, Havana, which will turn 500 years soon, is a state of mind, his eternal girlfriend, a wonder that proposes direct dialogue with the Cuban culture and people.
Complemented by the generalized used of new technologies, the industry of travels and leisure promotes the specialization in tourism of events and incentives, tours, circuits, health, nature and culture. Likewise, it promotes diving and nautical activities.