On 12-13 of November, 2013, a convention called “Tourism in Karabakh” was held in Stepanakert in the conference hall of “Vallex Garden hotel”. The conference was organized by the initiative of the units of “Vallex” group hotel and tour directorate.
Heads and other representatives of about 50 leading tour agencies of Armenia, heads of 3 tour agencies operating in Stepanakert, the head of the tourism department under the government of NKR, deputy minister of culture of NKR and other officials took part in the conference. In the conference, director of “Vallex Garden Hotel” Mikayel Ghalumyan welcomed the presents, expressing hope to continue such meetings, which will become traditional and will support to include Karabakh in active tour projects. Afterwards, representatives of “Aries Liber”, “Levon Travel”, “Sidon Tour and Travel”, “Sirov Travel”, “Yerevan Travel”, from Stepanakert “Varanda Travel” tour companies had a speech. They raised the problems impeding the tourism development in Karabakh. First of all it is the long distance from Yerevan and the poor state of the twisting roads that push away especially the foreign tourists. One of the solutions of this problem might be the small aviation development or the regular flights of helicopters. As one of the obstacles also was mentioned the disinformation about Karabakh in abroad and anti-propaganda realized by Azerbaijan. Also, it was sounded that there are few companies providing appropriate level of tourism services in Karabakh: there are no restaurants offering national meals and other components developing the tourism. Professionals of the field, however, stated that the mentioned problems should not block their efforts, and expressed their readiness henceforth to work more actively in Karabakh. The state of providing enough hotel accommodations has been improved essentially: there are about 1000 hotel accommodations available.
The luxury hospitality conditions of “Vallex Garden Hotel” allow inviting confidently the most capricious tourist to Karabakh. Summarizing the conference, NKR tourism department head stated that in recent years there have been noticed serious changes in the field, and the government is trying to realize works towards the stimulation of the field development. However, he sees the overcoming of the mentioned problems in active operation of the tour companies of Armenia, as, according to the official statistic data, having 15 000 tourists annually no private company will make serious investment in the field. As a serious force for the development of the tourism in Artsakh the big number of the inhabitants of Armenia who haven’t been to Artsakh yet may be considered. In near future, projects will be elaborated which will suggest short-stay and packages with reasonable prices to the inhabitants of Armenia, for their 5-day rest in Artsakh. Also, the issue of high quality guides preparation was discussed. On November 12, participants of the conference visited “Artsakh Brandy Company”, got acquainted to the production of alcohol drinks and had degustation.