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1992 and the Tourism Boom in Barcelona

By | 6 March, 2017 | 0 comments

The 1992 Barcelona Olympic Games signified a real before and after in the Spanish city. In addition to going down in history as one of the most successful and best organised Olympics ever, Barcelona was able to make the most of a time that placed it as the capital of the world for a few days in July and August of that magical year. It was the push that was needed to display its attractions and show the world that it was capable of organising an event of such magnitude with skill. Noted with approval even today, the hard work continues to bear fruit for the city now. The number of tourists arriving in Barcelona today has increase by a factor of five, and some of the facilities that hosted competitions at the Olympic Games are a must-see for many of them.

Barcelona 92 in figures

On 25th July 1992 the Olympics that would forever change Barcelona and the history of the Olympics began. The organisation and good work of 92 marked a before and after in this major sporting event. Some of the figures of Barcelona 92 include:

– the Olympic torch travelled more than 6,000 kilometres, passing through the 17 autonomous communities thanks to the efforts of 9,600 torch bearers.

– a total of 364 athletes from 169 countries took part.

Spain won a record medal haul of some 13 golds, 7 silvers and 2 bronzes. In total, 22 medals.

the Unified Team, formed of 475 athletes from the former Soviet Union stole pole position on the medal tally with 112 medals (45 golds, 38 silvers and 29 bronzes), followed by the United States with 108 (37 golds, 34 silvers and 37 bronzes).

The before and after of Barcelona 92

In addition to the undeniable promotion that comes with hosting the world’s biggest sporting spectacle, Barcelona undertook a series of ambitious improvements that, over time, have proved that they were a wise choice. Despite being a maritime city, the weak point that the city had before 1992 was that it failed to combine its privileged location with an attractive aesthetic. The great infrastructure that corrected this anomaly was the Puerto Olímpico, headquarters of the sailing competitions during the Olympics and today one of the most interesting leisure areas of the capital.

Incorporation of the coast caused millions of tourists to choose Barcelona as a destination, where they were met with the cultural and artistic heritage that was more akin to the charm they had always presumed of the city of Barcelona. A tour around the Olympic Port cannot be missed on any itinerary, as well as the beach at Barceloneta, which has been transformed into one of the city’s genuinely pretty beaches to visit that is exquisitely clean. The real success of the change was that tourists realised they didn’t have to travel to the coastal towns outside Barcelona to sunbathe, take a dip and relax in a restaurant or bar on the seafront. The city itself could offer all that and more to the visitors it captured immediately.

Montjuic was another of those places with charm that definitely opened to tourism in 1992 and that today preserves the sportsmanship that was demonstrated in that year. Although the magic mountain had already been seen at the Universal Exhibition of 1929, the Olympic Games gave it the ultimate accolade with the construction of infrastructure such as the Palau Sant Jordi, the Olympic Stadium, the Picornell swimming pools and the Calatrava Tower.

The greatness of 1992 lies in that, along with promotion of the excellent city, it led to the expansion and diversification of tourism. That was the key to the number of visitors growing steeply. Furthermore, Barcelona was able to anticipate that success by doubling its hotel capacity to host a number of tourists that keeps breaking records and is already approaching 8 million a year.

Categories: Tourism

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