China will be getting a taste of the Shuswap’s house-boating lifestyle.
Shuswap Tourism played host to Travel Channel China and National Geographic China for a luxury two-day tour of the Shuswap and Mara Lakes to promote the region.
Tourism BC and the Canadian Tourism Commission selected the Shuswap for one of their “Canada – You Can Be a Star” promotion, which is designed to increase awareness of unique activities in Canada to the fast-growing independent travel segment in China.
The promotion involved selecting a Chinese couple who spent time in the Shuswap filmed by Travel Channel China – the premier travel TV channel in China with a viewing audience of over 300 million.
The selection of the couple involved a public voting process and was reviewed by Canadian Tourism Commission and Travel Channel China. They were short listed for live auditions in front of a celebrity panel on May 26.
The couple who spent time in the Shuswap was fun loving and had an adventurous spirit; they will each be featured in at least five program episodes on the China Travel Channel.
“China is a large tourism market for Canada and the Shuswap region will be showcased to over 300 million people in China. China is looking for new adventures to explore and this film will reveal the diversity of the Shuswap Region and the wonderful adventures that exist here. The Chinese market was untapped until now and this is our first tourism experience with China. Tapping into this market will provide many opportunities for local businesses in the region,” says Wendy Byhre, Shuswap Tourism Marketing Co-ordinator.
In addition to the China Travel Channel – the promotion is being covered through National Geographic Traveller magazine and many social media sites such as RenRen, Kaixin (these two are Facebook equivalents), Dourban and P1 (twitter).
Waterway Houseboats provided their largest and most luxurious 94-foot “Legacy” houseboat for this tour. It comes complete with a furnished boardroom, 14 foot ceilings, enlarged hot tub, 42-inch plasma TV, a chandelier, and six staterooms.
Food was provided by local businesses including Sage Catering, the Shuswap BBQ Company, the Blue Canoe Bakery and beverages came from Shuswap wineries and the Barley Station Brew Pub.
Tourism officials raved about the Shuswap experience.
“I can honestly say in the eight years that I have been working with Tourism BC that these past couple of days rate in the top three B.C. travel/vacation experiences. I’d absolutely bring more media to showcase this unique and luxurious way to vacation,” says Tourism BC’s Rick Graham.