Bulgarian Sector

Presentation of Bulgarian Municipalities


"Hissar - Spa Residence of the Balkans"

Mr. Blagoy Ragin: “Make Cultural Tourism, Not War!”

(Read here in BG)

Velingrad - Sandanski – Hissar, in parallel advertising of the three geographic locations, the Alliance recognizes the balneology in Bulgaria. Hissar. June 20, 2011. Hissar Municipality and Bulgarian Hotel & Restaurant Association (BHRA) hosted the Balkan Alliance of Hotel Associations (BAHA) during the traditional June Celebrations of the town (10 – 19.06. 2011). Hissar gained the most prestigious recognition from the hospitality associations. With its 12 hotels, 6 spa facilities, thermal springs and first-class developed areas, the town was nominated for a Spa Residence in the Balkans this spring in Budva, Montenegro.



Hissar won the votes of all members of BAHA.

The prestigious award "Hissar - Spa Residence of the Balkans" and that of “Central Club Spa - Spa Club of the Balkans 2011" were celebrated during the official ceremony, conducted at the Summer Theatre, and attended by the entire Balkan Alliance of Hotel Associations, guests from Serbia, Macedonia, Croatia, Kosovo and Bulgaria. The ceremony peaked with the gala performance of National Art Group, the dance ensemble of the Bulgarian sport gymnastics phenomenon Neshka Robeva. National Art Group has a mission to promote Bulgarian and Balkan folklore through alternative ways of expression. Impressed by the linking points in history, geographical - cultural dimension and traditions, all the attendees accepted the words of Mr. Blagoy Ragin “make cultural tourism, not war” as a necessity and a message.


Welcome to Bulgaria Program was personally presented by its director Mrs. Vessela Tsolova. It raised great interest among the members of BAHA, the foreign guests and the spa tourism professionals. Mr. Ragin, chairperson of BHRA, made a stand for the industry efforts on the new future for tourism in the state. Both Mr. Zlatko Zlatanov, chairperson of the regional section of BHRA, in Velingrad and Mr. Blagoy Ragin spoke up for the targeted advertising, the "face to face" propaganda, the importance of modern techniques and patterns of business behavior towards potential customers and tourists of foreign markets (the basic directions of Welcome to Bulgaria Program). BAHA pointed out “Velingrad - Sandanski – Hissar” as an example of awareness for the entire peninsula. In those three geographic locations, which are always mentioned together, the Alliance recognizes the balneology of Bulgaria.


Yesterday was the last day of the Amateur Theater Festival, which is an initiative of the local community center "Ivan Vazov" since 2003. This year the Festival was preceded by a culinary fiesta and reenactments of the history of the region, inhabited for centuries thanks to its riches. Today the council members reported the success of June Celebrations 2011 and their positive influence on the effectiveness of the regional economics and the competitive power of the tourist products in both international and local perspective. In Hissar the spa tourism started 1700 years ago. The Municipality added to every Bulgarian lev gained from tourist taxes, 200% investment in favor of tourism, confirmed Mayor Mr. George Piryankov. After the presented statistics, Mr. Ivan Zhutev, Mayor of Starosel (a part of Hisarya community), elaborated how archaeological discoveries prove that in the settlement balneology dates back 26,000 years ago. Starosel gained worldwide fame after the discoveries of Professor George Kitov1 – the ancient Thracian tombs and temples, which are the earliest symbolic systems of communication in Southeast Europe.


1. Georgi Kitov, A Thracian Cult Complex Near Starosel. Chetinyova Mogila in Light of the Investigations in 2000, – Early Symbolic Systems for Communications in Southeast Europe. Vol. 2. Oxford 2003, 505–518



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