Essaouira officials aim to mobilize strategies to consolidate the city as a national and international tourist destination as soon as July.
Rabat – Essaouira officials and tourism professionals are hard at work developing a strategy for the city’s multidimensional revival following the end of Morocco’s COVID-19 lockdown, dubbed “Essaouira, the Day After.”
For several weeks, the coastal city’s officials have engaged in a cycle of interactive consultation and collective reflection around the logistic and creative means to jumpstart the city’s activity post-lockdown and position it as a national and international tourist destination.
The Essaouira-Mogador Association, in partnership with the Provincial Tourism Council (CPT), organized the strategic meetings via videoconferences.
Fifty participants representing various sectors attended the third round of talks on Saturday, and the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Essaouira-Mogador Association, Redwane Khanne, led the discussion of their proposed enrichment projects.
Andre Azoulay, an adviser to King Mohammed VI and the president of the Essaouira-Mogador Association, also participated in the May 30 videoconference.
“The complementary nature of [this] mobilization has been and will be a decisive asset for the success of this open, creative, and participatory approach that Essaouira has chosen to favor,” Azoulay said during the discussion.
“The exceptional convergence, coherence, and synergy that has characterized this collective, proactive, and pragmatic reflection … [have] made it possible to optimize and conceptualize in record time … scenarios of the multidisciplinary strategy that could be implemented as early as July,” he continued.
Dynamic proposals from a diverse collective
Among the projects presented, a mobile application stands out as particularly promising. The app aims to enhance the historical and cultural heritage of Essaouira, reach a wider target of tourists, promote Essaouira on the web, and facilitate interactive communication and digital marketing in order to better inform visitors and spread a more dynamic image of the city.
Proposals also include the production of promotional videos, a museum space dedicated to Gnaoua art and culture, and a daily entertainment program for the summer months to promote Essaouira as the center of religious and cultural coexistence in Morocco.
“In Essaouira and for a little more than 30 years now, we have been enhancing our heritage and revisiting our history, immersing ourselves in the depth and modernity of the humanist values that have nurtured and largely determined the Souiri identity,” Azoulay remarked during Saturday’s videoconference.
Another proposal suggests live-streaming the city’s contemporary dance music and digital arts “Moga Festival” to reach a broader international audience.
Other project ideas include localized food tours, an app detailing tourist circuits to promote domestic tourism, and a simplified guide outlining the preventive health measures necessary for the resumption of cultural activities in the city.
“This Souiri agenda would fall within the regulatory framework decided by the government, and that is why we have developed for each project three feasibility scenarios, the minimal, the median, and the optimal,” said Azoulay.
“Essaouira now has a comprehensive, rational, and realistic roadmap that allows all hopes for the days after [lockdown],” he stated confidently.