Dutch Tourism to lure UK visitors with culture drive

The Dutch Tourist Office has brought in McCluskey International to woo more visitors from the UK in its first agency hire for five years.

The Netherlands Board of Tourism and Conventions has drafted in the London-based travel specialist to target affluent young couples, the over-40s and art fans who would typically visit cities such as Florence, Rome or Barcelona.

The first strand of McCluskey's drive will position Holland as a centre for culture, art, history and heritage, pushing the 400th anniversary celebrations of artist Rembrandt, set to take place in 2006.

A media relations campaign will kick off next month promoting the year-long series of events and exhibitions planned in Amsterdam to celebrate the life of the famous Dutch painter.

McCluskey will also promote Dutch city-breaks, the main focus for tourism out of the UK, said McCluskey group account director Susie de Carteret.

The city of Utrecht has now been added to the city breaks programme, sitting alongside stag-market favourite Amsterdam, plus the less-often visited towns of Rotterdam, The Hague, Maastricht and Eindhoven.

An additional campaign will target the over-40s market via a 'Drive Dutch Drive Deutsch' campaign, promoting access to Holland by car in partnership with the German National Tourist Office.

The campaign will feature an exhibition at the World Travel Market, ExCeL from 14-17 November.

McCluskey secured the brief after a six-way pitch.

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