MADRID – Bolivia is studying Spain’s paradores – historic buildings converted to luxury inns – as an option to attract more tourists to the Andean nation, the country’s deputy tourism minister told EFE on Thursday.
“We are very interested in cooperating with Spain in the project of establishing a network of paradores,” Ricardo Cox said at Madrid’s annual International Tourism Fair.
Paradores located along Bolivia’s new, modern highways represent a way to “rescue heritage sites,” he said.
“We have wine routes that share a very important history with Spain. The wine that was brought to Potosi, the most important city of the colonial era, was shipped in barrels from the (Iberian) peninsula. The vines were brought later and from that emerged the high-altitude wine route, at 2,800m (9,000 ft),” Cox said.
Bolivia’s tourism ambitions received a boost last year, when the country received a pair of awards as the Best Cultural Destination in South America and the world, respectively.
“In reality, Bolivia is a crossroads that is in the heart of South America and as such, it has the most potential as a hub for air and ground transportation,” the deputy minister said.