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Portugal with one ‘Oscar’ at World Travel Awards
Portugal managed only one award at what is known as ‘The Oscars of the Travel Industry’ at the 2011 awards ceremony held last Friday in Turkey.
According to World Travel Awards, this year was marked by singling out travel brands that have demonstrated the greatest strength amid global economic uncertainty.
Portugal’s sole victor at international level was Vila Joia in Albufeira, which won the title of ‘Europe’s Leading Boutique Resort’, repeating its feat of last year. Vila Joia’s restaurant was earlier this year voted amongst the world’s top 100 restaurants.
Lisbon, which has been a regular winner in the competition, lost out to Copenhagen as the best cruise port, while losing best city break destination to Istanbul.
Portugal had entered in 29 categories.
On a national level, the Bairro Alto Hotel in Lisbon was voted Portugal’s leading boutique hotel, while the Lisbon Marriott Hotel was elected the country’s leading conference hotel.
The Sheraton Pine Cliffs Resort in Albufeira was voted Portugal’s leading family resort. Other winners included Praia d’el Rey Marriott & Beach Resort (Portugal’s leading golf resort), Pestana Palace (Portugal’s leading hotel), Hilton Vilamoura (Portugal’s leading resort), while Hotel Quinta do Lago was voted Portugal’s leading spa resort.
More than 500 organisations across Europe, spanning more than 125 categories, entered the competition for the most influential accolade in travel.
Lufthansa was one of the big stars on the night, walking off with the blue riband category ‘Europe’s Leading Airline’, whilst Le Bristol Paris was voted ‘Europe’s Leading Hotel’, InterContinental Hotels & Resorts won ‘Europe’s Leading Hotel Brand’.
Turkey in particular enjoyed a large slice of the evening’s honours, reflecting its role as one of the few tourism success stories of the global downturn.
“During times of economic uncertainty world-class brands come into their own, continuing to grow market share whilst competitors flounder. Turkey in particular has showed its credentials as a world-class tourism brand, demonstrated in the number of top honours won by the nation’s top hotels and travel organisations”, said Graham E. Cooke, President and Founder of World Travel Awards.
The Europe Ceremony marks the second leg of the World Travel Awards 2011 Grand Tour. Regional events will follow in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt; Bangkok, Thailand and Montego Bay, Jamaica. The winners of these regional events will progress to the Grand Final in Doha, Qatar on 29 November.
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