Excerpts from DTCuba.com

Cuban Tourist Sector Reports One Million Visitors

On April 5, the Cuban tourist sector reported one million visitors; five days ahead of the predicted date.

According to the Ministry of Tourism, during the first quarter of the year there has been an approximate 4 percent increase in the number of visitors arriving in the country, as well as 12 percent income increase.

Authorities from the sector emphasized that the main tourist sending markets, from January to March 2012, were Canada, Argentina, Russia, Germany, France, Mexico and Scandinavia.

Likewise, an increase in the number of visitor is expected from other countries like Colombia, Peru and the Netherlands.

Cuba has more than 55,000 hotel rooms across 300 hotels.

Cubanacán Group to Manage Two Hotels in Eastern Cuba

Cubanacán Group will manage the Bucanero hotel and the Casa Granda hotel located in the eastern province of Santiago de Cuba.

According to sources from the sector, the chain would increase to 73 its number of facilities.

The Casa Granda hotel has 58 rooms, two restaurants and a location near places like the Casa de la Trova and the Bacardi Museum.

On the other hand, the Bucanero will operate through the all-inclusive Cuba hotel reservation system, and will have the additional benefit of being located in the Baconao Park.

The hotel has 200 rooms, facilities for nautical sports, three restaurants, two swimming pools and a game hall.

Increased Number of Visitors to Tourist Destinations in Granma

The province of Granma, in the eastern area of the country, reported the arrival of 32,814 visitors in the different tourist destinations of the territory last year.

According to sources from the sector, this figure represented a growth in 2,154 tourists as compared to the previous year.

The main tourist sending countries were led by Canada, with a 6.3 percent growth, followed by Germany, the United Kingdom, Netherlands, and Venezuela.

Several factors have influenced this behavior, among them, an adequate commercialization and promotional strategy of the main tourist attractions in the province, like nature tourism.

Ecotourism enthusiasts may climb Pico Turquino, the highest mountain in Cuba that is 1,974 meters above sea level while staying at the hotel at Marea del Portillo.

New Tourist Option in Jardines del Rey

The tourist destination Jardines del Rey (King’s Gardens), in the eastern area of the country, has added the services of the Memories Flamenco hotel featuring 624 rooms.

The five-star hotel will be managed by Gaviota S.A., under an administration contract with the Canadian tour-operator Sunwing Travel Group.

The hotel is composed of three buildings, stores, specialized restaurants, swimming pools for children and adults, party halls and meeting rooms; as well as recreational clubs for children.

The hotel will be managed by Blue Diamond Hotels and Resorts, a division of Sunwing Travel Group. Blue Diamond Hotels is also involved in the management of the Memories Caribbean Beach Resort hotel in Jardines del Rey; as well as Paradise Santa María and Memories Santa María in the province of Villa Clara.

Investments in Cuban Apiculture - Cuban Honey

The Cuban agricultural sector is investing nearly ten million dollars to support the expansion of apiculture in order to meet the growing demands of Cuban honey.

The funds will be used to improve the supply chain, from the personnel to the specialized laboratories that evaluate the quality of the product and the genetic characteristics of the bees.

Cuba aims to produce as much as 10,000 tons of honey from 200,000 beehives featuring 30 different types of apiculture products by 2015.

Today Cuba has more than 1,500 beekeepers and over 160,000 beehives that produced about 6,600 tons in 2011.

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