Friday, March 11, 2016

ITB2016 - What has Saxony to offer?

Over the span of five days, March 9 - March 13, 2016, the world meets in Berlin during the 50th International Tourism Trade Show Berlin (Internationale Tourismusbörse Berlin or ITB at short) at the trade fair area around the famous Funkturm near the former race track AVUS.

March, still a rather cold month in Germany, and yet the best opportunity to experience the world at large, from Israel to Hiddensee, from the Netherlands to Saxony - spanning across all possible destinations. Besides strolling around the vast area, focus was during yesterday's visit to ITB as HTxA - HighTech x Agency on Saxony, and its vibrations within the global "tourism orchestra".

In Hall 11.2 (not far from one of the main entrances North entrance, close to ZOB) the three East German states, Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt and Thuringia collaborated along the focus on being "Cultural Heart of Germany".

The motto of this year's invitation to the global tourism community by the Tourismus Marketing Gesellschaft Sachsen mbH (TMGS) at ITB is titled "Saxony - Feel the spirit of nature! Sachsen - Spüre die Natur!" - and this is what you experience when entering the hall, which is compared to some other halls (which often have large windows and high ceilings) rather cosy, and is reframing with installations and a huge video screen being somewhere in the Saxony Switzerland. Of course is not everything Saxony has to offer, and other parts of the state surprise with industrial and cultural heritage. The most prominent may be the Gewandhaus Orchestra Leipzig, Saxon State Opera Semperoper Dresden or the famous Porcelain Manufacture Meissen (April 22.-23. 2016 there is the upcoming Open Day Bellevue Arts Museum in Washington State).
where you can get a personal feeling what it means to handcraft the pieces of art in porcelain; currently the co-created artwork "Forbidden Fruit" by Chris Anteman who attended the ArtCampus at Meissen® can be seen at the

As Saxony, besides being a central part of the reformation and culture in general mainly driven by far looking monarchs like August the Strong, always had a strong focus on technology (not just today as the center for semiconductors and microelectronics, namely "Silicon Saxony") and at various places you can combine the outdoor activities with having deeper looks into the past of such as Chemnitz with its Saxon Industrial Museum. Radeberg (just a mere 30 min train ride from Dresden and at the north-eastern part of the Dresden Heath) where not only beer has a long tradition but also a new exhibition on its industrial and innovation legacy at Schloss Klippenstein (article in the Sächsische Zeitung [German]).

At the second day of the ITB The Saxonz, a Saxon breakdance group that has also done some projects in the past with dancers of the Semperoper Ballett, has won a prize with its clip "Life is a dance". The video not only is stating the beauty of the nature that can be encountered in the countryside all around Saxony in often quite diverse forms but also the spirit of doing sports in many variations.

"Life is a dance" by Sebastian Linda 

Are you getting curious about Saxony and whether considering visiting this unique state in the south-eastern part of Germany?

Check out the website of the Tourismus Marketing Gesellschaft Sachsen mbH (which offers information in over a dozen languages, and is also present on Facebook) and don't hesitate to ask on specifics - there is lots to explore in Saxony, not just a short visit to the big cities, and you definitely need some days (eventually weeks).

.... and some finalizing thoughts here the #PresencingStatus on yesterday's visit to ITB and the appearance of Saxony:

  • Good - dense, interactive, and diverse representation of Saxony, quite centrally located
  • Tricky - as masses rise over the day, the flow through the hall can become a "bottleneck"; literally too much to see (as always)
  • Learned - digital is rising (power plugs a nightmare at the whole area of ITB); using hashtags like #Sachsen #Saxony in connection with #ITB2016 has quite some potential to raise global awareness of what Saxony has to offer
  • Action - not stopping to share what Saxony has to offer as lately done during the MOOC #ScalingUp with an international team; not to forget various exhibitions around Camelia Japonica in Saxony (Kamelie at Schloss Pillnitz; Deutsche Kamelienschau at Landschloss Zuschendorf) 

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