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Winter season now closes with hope for better times

БНР Новини
Photo: pamporovo.me

“The heaviest winter season over the past decade,” said Marian Belyakov, CEO of Pamporovo – one of the three top ski resorts in Bulgaria. Borovetz and Bansko shall agree with that for sure – the lack of snow created difficulties for both the resorts and the tour operators and tourists.

Marian Belyakov presents Pamporovo’s candidature to host the WC for Journalists 2018 race“The resort was visited by some 250,000 tourists and the number would have been even bigger if the weather had allowed it,” Mr. Belyakov says. “You know that the weathercast on TV does have its impact on people’s decisions. To tell the truth, we had some of the best conditions for skiing till mid-February, with around 10 tracks open since December. People hardly felt the lack of natural snow thanks to the really good system for artificial snow.”

Obviously snow will be the main problem for skiing over the next years. Even the World Cup starts have felt serious difficulties at their organization, as climate changes do affect ski resorts. Is it enough to have an artificial snow system?

“I don’t think that this climate thing is some major drama,” Marian Belyakov says. “It’s just that there are no two seasons alike. Yet, not a single European resort has been left without a system for artificial snow. The reason lies in the fact that artificial snow has much more stable crystal basis and the natural–artificial snow combination results in the perfect snow coverage, when the ratio is right…”

Pamporovo once again opted for its traditional guests over the year. The Rhodope resort was Top winter destination for the Bulgarians for another year in a row. Many Turkish, Greek and Romanian tourists, along with Englishmen and Russians spend their holiday here. In the words of Pamporovo’s trade director Tatyana Marinova the resort is attractive for both families with children, as well as for experienced skiers. Over the next season Pamporovo will offer the initial association of ski zones in Bulgaria – a typical for the Alps practice:

“The town of Chepelare and the Mechi Chal track become part of the Pamporovo skiing zone which will be a huge bonus for our now regular clients. They will appreciate what happened between both skiing zones, which turned the place into a top resort. The magnificent nature, crystal clear air, sunny days and the lack of any pollution – this all lets us offer a good product at a high level,” Marinova says.

Even in the end of a difficult season, Pamporovo still has reasons to be proud. It will be now host of two other major sporting events, after the two starts of the European Cup this year. In 2018 the place will host the World Championships in Skiing for Journalists, traditionally gathering more than 200 colleagues from over 50 countries. Thus Bulgaria will organize for the third time the competitions in the unique combination of a giant slalom and cross-country skiing after it hosted on Vitosha back in 1985 and in Bansko in 2006. The world meetings of the Ski Club International des Journalisteshave been an annual event since 1953. The application of Pamporovo was accepted unanimously by 32 member-states in the Italian Alpian center of Sestriere where the World Cup took place in March this year. Bulgaria’s Yulian Stoyanov won the silver in the giant slalom and Radio Bulgaria’s Vessela Vladkova took the prestigious 5th position among the women.

A year later Pamporovo will organize the Inter Congress – World, where the International Ski Instructors Association gathers once per 4 years for practice and experience exchange. Over 40 countries will join the 10-day-long forum which will contribute to Bulgaria’s popularity as a winter tourist destination.

English version: Zhivko Stanchev

Photos: Vessela Vladkova
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