The Smart Destinations Network celebrates its third anniversary with a total of 483 new members, of which 328 are destinations; 63 are institutions, 89 are collaborating companies and three are international observers.
The Network, originally formed by 47 full members and 10 institutions, was born with the aim of promoting a new framework of reference to consolidate the competitiveness of the Spanish tourism model, while at the same time seeking to be an example of public-private collaboration.
This aim is now a reality. The smart destination model has been consolidated both nationally and internationally, and the Smart Destinations Network has become a nexus between stakeholders in the public and private tourism sectors, allowing destination managers, institutions and companies to share knowledge, success stories and best practices. All with the sole purpose of improving the competitiveness of tourism in Spain.
Over these three years, numerous executive and plenary commissions have been held, with the presence of the Minister of Industry, Trade and Tourism, and during the pandemic in 2020, King Felipe VI was also present, at an extremely difficult time for tourism in our country.
Thanks to the efforts of the Network, it has also been possible to publish manuals and best practice guides on how to adapt beaches in the context of Covid-19, the creation of web pages to promote tourism, digitalisation, and more.
Furthermore, several working groups have been set up to analyse specific issues in order to identify common problems that need to be addressed.
Training has been another of the Network’s core activities, involving training courses designed to raise awareness of the smart destination model and its key principles: innovation, technology, sustainability, governance and accessibility. In addition to this, fortnightly webinars have been organised to address hot topics related to destination management.
A directory of technological solutions fundamental for destination managers has also been created.
Communication between the Network and its members has been ongoing during this time, through weekly newsletters, active listening reports, and newsletters, as well as the smart destinations website and its social media profile.
In short, these have been three years of hard work that have yielded excellent results, thanks to the collaboration and the efforts made by of all the members. An initiative that has proved to be extremely useful, as evidenced by the exponential growth in the number of Network members.
At the meeting held today the Executive Committee, chaired by the Secretary of State for Tourism Fernando Valdés, approved the incorporation of 102 new full members, including: the town councils of A Fonsagrada, Albarracín, Alfoz de Lloredo, Algeciras, Allande, Almansa, Añora, Arcos de la Frontera, Belchite, Belmonte de Miranda, Cabanas, Carenas, Cariño, Carmona, Cartaya, Castro Caldelas, Cedeira, Cercedilla, Cerdido, Colmenar de Oreja, Colunga, Cuevas del Almanzora, Duruelo de la Sierra, El Franco and Encinas Reales.
Ferrol, Fuendetodos, Gáldar, Gea de Albarracín, Grado, Grandas de Salime, Huesca, Igualada, La Línea de la Concepción, Llanes, Lleida, Medina de Rioseco, Moeche, Mogarraz, Mora de Rubielos, Mula, Neda, Oia, Orce, Ordes, Oropesa del Mar, Ortigueira, Oviedo, Palencia, Pontevedra, Puente Genil, Pulpí, Rianxo, Ribamontán al Mar, Salar, Salas, San Javier, San Martín del Tesorillo, San Roque, San Sadurniño, Sant Feliu de Guíxols, Sariego and Sitges have also joined.
As have Sober, Socuéllamos, Tardajos, Tejeda, Teruel, Teverga, Tineo, Titulcia, Torrelaguna, Torre-Pacheco, Torroella de Montgrí, Valdoviño, Vélez-Málaga, Vilafranca del Bierzo, Villanueva del Arzobispo, Villarrubia de Santiago, Villaviciosa, Zamora and Zaragoza.
Cabildo de Fuerteventura, la Comarca de Somontano de Barbastro, el Consell Comarcal de l’Urgell, el Consell Insular de Ibiza/Eivissa; the provincial councils of A Coruña, Castellón, Jaén, Málaga, and Zamora have also joined the network,
as have the Islantilla commonwealth of municipalities, municipalities of the Ferrol region, the municipalities of Mariña Lucense, of Morrazo, of the Levante Almeriense, of the Sierra Morena Cordobesa, of the Sierra Morena de Sevilla, the Terras de Pontevedra, commonwealth of municipalities of the Valle del Ambroz, of Trasierra Tierras de Granadilla and the Intermunicipal de la Vera.