Metropolitan Touring Announces New Offices in Brazil and Colombia

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Metropolitan Touring, the South American tour operator with headquarters in Quito, Ecuador, announces the beginning of its operations in Colombia with the opening of Metropolitan Touring Colombia and in Brazil with the creation of Metropolitan Touring Brazil.

The company's strategic plan is to offer the travel trade an unbeatable “one-stop shop” for all their travel needs across the continent.

Metropolitan Touring, the South American tour operator with headquarters in Quito, Ecuador, announces the beginning of its operations in Colombia with the opening of Metropolitan Touring Colombia and in Brazil with the creation of Metropolitan Touring Brazil.

The company now operates in six countries across South America, part of its strategic plan to offer the travel trade an unbeatable “one-stop shop” for all their travel needs across the continent. It will bring its highly-regarded expertise and know-how to these destinations, building on its commitment to sustainable and life-enriching travel experiences.

“Colombia has huge potential as a tourist destination,” said Paulina Burbano de Lara, Metropolitan Touring’s President. “It has a stunning variety of attractions from the Caribbean coast to the mountains of the Andes to the rainforests of the Amazon, and its people are warm and welcoming. We are delighted to begin operations in the country and are very confident the number of international travellers will increase exponentially in the near future.” Already in 2009, visitor numbers to Colombia grew by 10.7% - more than any other country in Latin America – to 1.4 million.

Metropolitan Touring Colombia is the fusion of two companies, Bienvenidos Turismo and Colombia’s Gate, which between them have over 25 years of experience in the incoming travel sector. With Haidy Thorin and Camilo Calderón at the helm, Metropolitan Touring Colombia combines experience, verve and professionalism.

Metropolitan Touring’s ground-handling operations in Brazil, meanwhile, incorporate the receptive tourism division of the company Freeway, the Brazilian tour operator which specializes in ecotourism programs and which is a key member of TOI – the Brazilian Tour Operators’ Initiative for Sustainable Tourism Development.

“The Brazilian government is investing heavily in tourism promotion and with the World Cup and the Olympics due in the next six years, it’s a great time for us to enter this market,” said María Cecilia Alzamora, Vice President of Incoming Tourism at Metropolitan Touring. “We have been looking to work in the country for some time and we are delighted to be able to bring our know-how and experience to bear in this destination. The future is bright for Brazil.”

Freeway started operations in Brazil in 1983 – promoting programs and activities in natural areas, both within Brazil and beyond. Freeway has received prestigious awards from the tourism trade media over the years.

Metropolitan Touring’s new offices in Colombia and Brazil are part of the strategic partnership with the Chile-based Explora company.

Founded in 1989 and headquartered in Chile, Explora offers lodge-based journeys (in the Atacama Desert, Patagonia and Rapa Nui (Easter Island)) in which an explora lodge is the central point for discovering its surrounding natural and cultural attractions. Over two decades, Explora has built an international reputation for its unrivalled standards of service, its eye-catching design, its innovative adventure programs and its dedication to sustainable travel.

Metropolitan Touring is one of the most highly-regarded tour operators on the continent. It has over 50 years’ experience, having pioneered travel to the Galápagos Islands in the 1960s, where today it operates an acclaimed trio of vessels – yachts La Pinta and Isabela II, and the M/V Santa Cruz – as well as the Finch Bay Eco Hotel on Santa Cruz Island. The company broadened its operations beyond Ecuador to include Peru in 2008, and Argentina and Chile in 2009. For more information, see http://www.metropolitan-touring.com

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Dominic Hamilton
Metropolitan Touring
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