One lucky recruit is poised to follow in the footsteps of Marco Polo by landing their dream job and becoming the first foreign ambassador for Chinese tourism via a global recruitment campaign.
Hangzhou in south-eastern China is the destination for the Modern Marco Polo, who will enjoy a free 15-day journey into Chinese culture and secure a €40,000 annual salary while promoting the city internationally for a year.
Legendary Italian traveller Marco Polo, one of the first westerners to visit Hangzhou back in 13th century, described it as: “The City of Heaven, the most beautiful and magnificent in the world.”
Today, Hangzhou is one of China’s biggest cities but retains its beautiful scenery and attractions such as West Lake — a UNESCO World Heritage Site – and the Grand Canal, which is bidding to be grated the same status. The success of the Modern Marco Polo campaign led to Hangzhou being the most Googled destination in China in 2013.
A shortlist of five candidates has been drawn from among nearly 26,000 worldwide entries and the Hangzhou Tourism Commission is now preparing to appoint one of them to the unique role.
Once recruited, the Modern Marco Polo will be treated to a 15-day trip to Hangzhou, including a four day tour along the Grand Canal. He or she will follow in the footsteps of Marco Polo before taking up the role of spokesperson to promote Hangzhou via social media.
The successful candidate will be introduced at a press conference on 20th May, which will be held at the Grand Canal in Hangzhou.
Zhao Hongzhong, spokesperson for the Hangzhou Tourism Commission, said: “We’re looking for someone who possesses the qualities of the original Marco Polo — they should be an energetic and adventurous person who loves the challenge of the unknown. It’s vital that they enjoy exploring new things and sharing their stories from a different point of view.”
Zhao Hongzhong added: “The ultimate goal is to highlight Hangzhou’s many qualities as an ideal destination for tourists and a place where visitors have the chance to enjoy all that Chinese culture has to offer.”
For the latest updates of “Be the Modern Marco Polo Experience Program,” visit Hangzhou’s official Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/Hangzhou.China.
And you can check out the video, by going to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lGIC_q9yALE&feature=youtu.be .