награди 2016 Minister of Tourism Nikolina Angelkova at the award ceremony for the first annual awards in tourism
Source and photo: Ministry of Tourism of Bulgaria

The Ministry of Tourism presented the first annual awards in tourism

Ministers, mayors, heads of state enterprises and agencies, MPs, representatives of the business, the non-government sector and the media participated in the award ceremony for the first annual awards in tourism. The initiative was organized by the Ministry of Tourism and the goal was to highlight and encourage all participants in the tourism sector, which endeavor to its sustainable development. In the official evening ceremony on 19 December, in the Central Military Club in Sofia, the winners in the 16 categories received their awards. The event was attended by more than 300 guests and the presenters were Georgi Lyubenov and Adelina Radeva from the Bulgarian National Television.

“This year the revenue from international tourism is expected to exceed 6 billion and 300 million BGN, which will be a growth of over 13% compared to last year. From now on we all should have one main objective – the revenue growth should exceed the growth in the number of tourists”, said Minister of Tourism Nikolina Angelkova at the official opening of the ceremony. In her words, more than 8 million foreign tourists will come to Bulgaria by the end of the year.

During the ceremony it became clear that the internet platform www.tourismawards.bg had more than 100 thousand registered votes for the 16 categories. The winners were evaluated in two stages. A special methodology was developed, consistent with the relevant set of quantitative and qualitative indicators and measures, in accordance with the criteria of the World Tourism Organization. In the first stage everyone wishing to submit an application may do this in compliance with the Rules published on the internet platform (the only exception was the category “The choice of Bulgarians”, in which the nominees were predefined). For more than one month over 200 applications were submitted in the 15 announced categories. The vote was limited for IP addresses with only one vote permitted per device. All re-submitted votes from the same device were registered as void.

Minister of Tourism Nikolina Angelkova presented the special award in the category “The choice of Bulgarians” to the mayor of Yambol Municipality Georgi Slavov. People chose the National Archaeological Reserve “Antique Thracian Town of Kabile” as the symbol of the Bulgarian tourism for 2016. In this category the users had a choice among the 100 national sites and 50 less known places of interest in Bulgaria.

The Minister of Labor and Social Policy Zornitsa Rusinova presented the award to the winner in the category “Tourist destination” – Shumen – Roots of Bulgaria – Shumen Municipality, Kaspichan Municipality, Veliki Preslav Municipality to the mayor of Shumen Municipality Lyubomir Hristov. The second and third awards in this category were presented to Ruse and Plovdiv.

The Deputy Mayor of Velingrad Municipality Dr. Kostadin Koev received the award for “2016 Municipality and SPA Tourism” from the Minister of Environment and Waters Ivelina Vasileva. The second and third awards in the category went to Pomorie and Sapareva Banya.

Minister of Youth and Sport Krasen Kralev presented the award to the winner in the category “Tourist event” – the Festival of the Rose. The statuette was personally received by the mayor of Kazanlak Municipality Galina Stoyanova. The Rozhen Folk Art and Animal Husbandry Fair and the Young Wine Parade were the tourist events that ranked second and third.

The mayor of Plovdiv Municipality Eng. Ivan Totev was presented with the award in the category “Specialized Tourism” for the winner Archeological Reserve “Ancient Town of Philippopolis and Old Plovdiv” from the Deputy Chairman of the parliamentary commission on economy and tourism in the 43th National Assembly Daniela Saveklieva. The Bulgarian Association of Balneology and SPA tourism and “Path of Silence” – an eco-path to the Thracian megalith in Kazanlak municipality, received the second and third awards.

The film “Bulgaria the Heritage of the Thracians” was the winner in the category “2016 Journalistic Material on Tourism on Television”. The award was handed by the president of the National Statistical Institute Sergey Tsvetarski to the authors Georgi Krumov and Stoyan Radulov. TV Cherno More was presented with second award and Travel TV with third award for “This is Bulgaria”.

The mayor of Bansko Municipality Georgi Ikonomov was handed the first place award in the category “2016 Municipality for Mountain Tourism” from Minister of Tourism Nikolina Angelkova. The second award was highly contested and went to Smolyan Municipality, the third went to Laki municipality.

The Late Antiquity and Medieval Fortress Tuida is the winner in the category “Tourist attraction/site”. The award was presented by the Chairman of the Commission for the Protection of Consumers Dimitar Margaritov to the Deputy Mayor of Sliven Municipality Stoyan Markov. The second award went to the Yard of the Cyrillic Alphabet – a museum of the Bulgarian alphabet, Pliska, and the third place was awarded to the Museum of the Rose, town of Kazanlak.

Ruse municipality was the unconditional winner in the category “2016 Municipality for Cultural and Historical Tourism”. The Deputy Mayor Dimitar Nakov received again the award from the Minister of Tourism. Stara Zagora Municipality was second and Plovdiv Municipality – third.

Nikolay Valkanov, member of the Management Board of the Confederation of Employers and Industrialists in Bulgaria and Chairman of the Board of Directors of “Minstroy Holding” presented the award to the winner in the category ‘2016 Municipality for Seaside Tourism” – Varna municipality. The award was accepted by the Deputy Mayor of Varna Municipality, Kosta Bazitov. Primorsko and Kavarna ranked second and third.

The winner in the category “2016 Journalistic Material on Tourism on Radio” is Albena Ivanova from Radio Focus with the broadcast “Panagyurishte – the Panagyurishte gold treasure, Krasen fortress, routes, Panagyurski Koloni area”. The award was presented by the Chairman of the Association of Industrial Capital, Vasil Velev. The second place was awarded to Petra Taleva from “Hristo Botev” radio programme of the Bulgarian National Radio for her broadcast “Yogurt from Momchilovtsi, water from Satovcha, mysteries and secrets from Strandzha”. The third place was conferred to Mila Mladenova and Rositsa Kavaldzhieva from “Horizont” radio programme of the BNR for “Bulgaria is becoming a more and more popular destination for opera tours”.

The Deputy Mayor of Sofia Municipality Doncho Barbalov presented the award to Stefan Kolev, the winner in the category “2016 Publication of a Material on Tourism in an Internet Blog” for “How to grow without aging (the secrets of a capital)”. In this category, Nina Alexander ranked second with “Ogosta Dam: Sinister beauty and “drowned stories”, Marta Ros ranked third with Pobitite Kamani: The Stone Forest”.

Irena Georgieva, Deputy Minister of Tourism, presented the award to the winner in the category “2016 Journalistic Material on Tourism in an Online Media”. This is Desislava Madanska with “Mishkova niva – the Bulgarian Stonehenge”, www.tourbg.net. The second place was awarded to Ventseslav Ilchev from Focus Information Agency for “Kyustendil: 260 sites offering balneo-, SPA and wellness services”, and the third award went to Teodora Georgieva from www.Jenite.bg for the material “The Devil’s Eco-path”.

The award in the category of “Innovations” was presented by Karel Kral, the CEZ regional manager, to Ivo Nikolov and Martin Stoykov from Travel Books Publishing House for a mobile application with Augmented Reality experience. The second place in the category was taken by the complex “UVA Nestum Wine&SPA”, and the third by the Instagram platform “My Bulgaria”.

The Deputy Minister of Tourism Irena Georgieva presented the award to Nataliya Malcheva – winner with the article “Brussels honours the castle in Ravadinovo” in the category “2016 Journalistic Material on Tourism in Bulgaria in a Print Media”. The second award was for Nikoleta Tsvetkova from Monitor Newspaper for the article “We track online the beach shadow price” and the third – for Polina Petrova from The Black Sea newspaper for “Siyka Katsarova: We can attract a higher class of tourists with SPA and balneology”.

The founder of the National Folklore Ensemble “Balgare”, Hristo Dimitrov, presented the award to the Mayor of Vratsa Municipality Kalina Kamenov for first place in the category “The Spirit of Bulgaria” for Ledenik National Folklore Fair. The picnic attraction “Balgarana”, Kazanlak, ranked second and the Autumn Museum of Crafts, Regional Craft Chamber – Plovdiv, ranked third.

The statuettes, which were given to the winners, reproduced a typical Bulgarian rose. During the event, the guests had the opportunity to listen to violoncello, violin and piano performed by the talented students of “Lyubomir Pipkov” National Music School, and the ceremony was closed with a performance of the custom “Koleduvane”by the National Folklore Ensemble “Bulgare”. The media partners of the initiative were the Bulgarian National Television, TV Bulgaria on Air, the 24 Hours newspaper, Darik Radio, Radio Focus, IA “Focus”, the websites economic.bg and kmeta.bg.

The statuettes received by the winners in the 16 categories are produced by Dimitar Germanov especially for the ceremony and they will be used in subsequent editions of the contest.