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Upgraded farmhouses winning Jizhou more visits

Updated: 2022-07-30 10:16 ( China Daily )
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A panoramic view of Panshan Mountain, which is a popular tourist attraction in Jizhou district of Tianjin. [Photo provided to China Daily]

Jizhou district in the city of Tianjin, North China, has become a destination for guests looking for boutique bed-and-breakfasts, according to local officials speaking at a news conference on Thursday.

Starting in 2020, the district has upgraded a good number of farmhouses.

"Our goal is to make high-end ones boutique, midrange ones comfortable and low-end ones standard", said Xu Xiangguang, the district's deputy head.

To gradually change farmhouse owners' business strategy, which aimed to earn more by receiving more guests, the local government crafted guidelines for B&B designs and ratings.

Over the past three years, the number of beds in farmhouses has been reduced by 4,400, thus enlarging the public space for guests and enriching the experiences they can offer. The average revenue per guest has increased from 144 yuan to 190 yuan ($21 to $28), up 32 percent.

"The number of boutique B&B businesses has grown to 220. They were swarming with tourists during peak seasons," Xu said. "Our district has handed over our application to the Ministry of Culture and Tourism on behalf of Tianjin for the status of being a top-level B&B destination."

For those that want to book a B&B site in Jizhou in a simpler way, the local government has designed a mini program on WeChat, an instant-messaging app operated by Tencent.

A family has an adventure on a suspended bridge at a tourist attraction in Jizhou. [Photo provided to China Daily]

It offers booking options for high-level scenic spots in Jizhou, 10 star-rated hotels, 150 boutique homestays and farmhouses, as well as a comprehensive introduction to its local food, specialties, restaurants and 40 fruit and vegetable picking gardens.

"There is so much for people to discover," Xu said. "Jizhou's folk culture, picturesque countryside landscapes, popular events and spots, trip routes, cultural venues and museums, and news and information await them."

Last month, a livestreaming show with the aim of promoting tourism in Jizhou on video-sharing platform TikTok racked up 1.01 billion views, topping similar events related to Tianjin.

So far, Jizhou has 2,475 farmhouse accommodations; 220 of them are B&B businesses. They have created 12,000 jobs and involved 60,000 farmers in their operations, bringing benefits to their families and about 180,000 local people. Many of the towns in the district have won such titles as China's beautiful countryside, the nation's famous town as well as China's rural tourism demonstration site.

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The news conference of the 2022 China International Travel Mart, Kunming, Yunnan province. [Photo/Chinaculture.org]

The 2022 China International Travel Mart was launched in Kunming, Yunnan province today. The three-day event opened at the Kunming Dianchi Lake International Convention and Exhibition Centre, with a theme focusing on smart innovation and high-quality tourism industry aspects.

The news conference was held in the city on Thursday. Zhang Xilong, first class inspector of the Bureau of the International Communication and Cooperation of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of China and Lou Kewei, deputy-director of the Department of Culture and Tourism of Yunnan province presented the meeting along with academy and entrepreneur representatives.

The conference introduced the preparations and relevant activities of the mart, such as a forum on smart tourism and innovation, a symposium on international travel communication and cooperation in the framework of Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) and a workshop on the China-Laos railway’s contribution to building an Asian community with a shared future.

According to the news meeting, the 2022 travel mart covers about 80,000 square meters, with about 4,200 standard booths. 71 countries and regions attended the event both online and offline, and 31 domestic provinces, cities and autonomous regions and 261 independent exhibition teams.

Online services will be provided to the overseas buyers and sellers in the light of time zones. They could also have a face-to-face negotiation at the mart as well.

The mart also has diverse displays to show culture and tourism, physical education and tourism, as well as overseas tourism and museums.

The National Cultural Heritage Administration, the Palace Museum and museums from other provinces will attend the travel mart.

At the event, Yunnan province will have 2,000 standard booths in four separate sections; each will show culture tourism, healthy lifestyles, physical education tourism and culture tourism consumption.

The travel mart will also stick to the rules of pandemic prevention and control while having the activities go on smoothly.

The news conference of the 2022 China International Travel Mart, Kunming, Yunnan province. [Photo/Chinaculture.org]
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