This year’s expectations are high – the organisers are hoping to greet more than the usual 16,000 visitors, as a new observation tower is about to open officially, aiming to serve as a real “boom” for the tourist offer of Pomurje.
The observation tower, called Vinarium, cost nearly 1.8 million euros, and 950,000 euros came from European funds. The initial plan was to build a 60-metre structure, but local architects protested and its height was thus set at 53.5 metres. The tower offers a nice view of four countries and was built with the aim of boosting tourism in the town of Lendava.
Vinarium will welcome its first visitors on 2nd September, and hopefully many more after this. Children and recreational athletes are eligible for a discounted entrance fee. The observation deck can be reached by climbing 240 stairs or taking the lift. The municipality expects for the new attraction to greet many tourists already in its first year. “The threshold for profitability is 20,000 visitors, which is not difficult to achieve, judging by the experience with our cultural centre. In our opinion, the optimal number is between 30 and 50 thousand,” explains Mayor of Lendava, Anton Balažek.
The official opening of the tower will take place during the Vinarium festival, with the latter hosting an international conference called Culture and Tourism, which is to be followed by mass cooking of a traditional Pomurje dish called bograč. The main organiser of Bogračfest, Igor Kolenko, boasts that 100 teams prepare so much bograč that 4,000 visitors can be fed.
The autumn in Lendava is most certainly set to be colourful – in addition to the two events, tourists are also invited to the town’s castle to see an exhibition of works created by the famous Spanish painter Pablo Picasso; the exhibition is open until the end of September.
Bojan Peček, TV Slovenija; translated by K. Z.