Ibiza establishes itself as an “international culinary destination.”

Ibiza establishes itself as an “international culinary destination.”

Alejandro Sancho, president of Fomento de Turismo (Ibiza’s Tourism Development Board) considers that the island’s success as a tourist destination is the “optimization and modernization of its tourist offer”.

“Everything related to a good or a bad tourist season affects the rest of the minority sectors on the island”.

Tourism in national terms, both directly and indirectly, represents approximately a 20% of Spain’s GDP. In Ibiza there is no other representative industry, therefore tourism is their main source of income. Fomento de Turismo (Ibiza Tourism Development Board) is the institution in charge of “defining the tourist strategy and identifying different Ibiza brand products”, according to their president Alejandro Sancho, who affirms that “everything related to a good or a bad tourist season affects the rest of the minority sectors on the island”.

What makes Ibiza unique?

Maybe the word “unique” is an excluding term. Ibiza is a special place in terms of its own culture and, above all, its people. Being ‘Ibicenco’ or feeling that you belong here is something that transmits very representative feelings and values which influence each person differently. However, if we focus on the ATEIF surveys, tourists leave the island in awe of its nature. The impact of its greenery and rural surroundings are added values that we might have not considered until very recently.

What do you believe to be the secret ingredient to being, year after year, one of the world’s main tourist destinations?

Today Ibiza as a brand has a major impact. Improved by the constant updating and modernization of its offer as well as the specialization of its sectors.

On an island where tourism is our main industry. What is the role of your institution?

The main role of Fomento de Turismo de Ibiza and our Executive Committee is defining a strategy, identifying the different Ibiza brand products; and encouraging collaborations between the public and private sectors. We must consider that a good or a bad tourist season affects the rest of the island’s minority sectors.

We have witnessed how the housing problem affects the contracting of workers during the summer. What can Fomento de Turismo do to help the situation?

This is a problem that has been affecting us specially in the last couple of years and it requires general changes from several institutions: state, regional and insular. At Fomento we have identified all the causes and their impacts, which are several, and we suggest possible solutions that without the help from public authorities these cannot be implemented. Unqualified practice and illegal offer are the main causes of this problem.

Fomento de Turismo stresses the relevance to promote local cuisine in their promotional campaigns. Why?

Ibiza has positioned itself as an international culinary destination. Every great culture is entwined to its cuisine and a destination such as Ibiza could not be less. We have traditional local restaurants that perfectly blend with more innovative restaurants that have been awarded by highly recognized brands.

You are from Ibiza. How would you describe the evolution of the island in terms of its type of tourism?

It is an evolution driven by its own supply and demand. A much-needed transformation that outlines many of the diverse virtues of this wonderful destination.

What is the first thing you notice, as the president of Fomento de Turismo, when you go away on holidays?

I notice the produce, service, administration, cleanliness, but above all I notice the staff and their empathy with their clients.

Why would you recommend Ibiza and Formentera to our readers?

Ibiza and Formentera have kept their essence. The great variety and constant innovation of their offering, segmented by products, make them two very complete but yetdiverse destinations.

What is your favorite spot in the Pitiusa Islands?

This is a hard question because there are so many. Santa Eularia is very attractive, because my family and friendslive there. In Formentera, Es Caló and Es Pujols are two of my favorite areas.