Published on May 15th, 2013
French Press Awards 2013 – so much more to entertain
Yesterday evening, fun and eclectic were on the menu at Sketch where 20 French representatives welcomed Journalists and tour operators to celebrate another great year of tourism in France and to recognise the journalists’ dedication, work and talent.
In November 2011, I had a dream… the 1st French Press Awards took place at the Spencer House, in all the splendour and pageantry of such a prestigious evening.
Another year has gone by and another dazzling array of articles, both printed and online, about France has published.
Over 5,000 articles were published in 2012 alone in both national and regional publications. To put it another way, articles on tourism in France reached a circulation of over 1.7 billion!
As Head of the PR department of Atout France in the UK, I would therefore like to thank you – the journalists – for your outstanding editorial coverage, which contributes enormously to the promotion of France as a holiday destination for every type of reader, no matter what their interests
This is all thanks to the work of Tour Operators and French Tourist Boards and Tourist Offices’ hospitality, and actually, a little bit of my team’s efforts to support the press in its endeavours to France.
The ‘More to Enjoy’ campaign
This year the Awards were also the opportunity to celebrate the ‘More to Enjoy’ campaign.
For the first time ever, Atout France, the France tourism development agency in Great Britain, have been able to federate 37 tourist boards, 2 carriers, 8 tour operators and TV5 monde (the French TV Channel) within a unique advertising campaign to promote EXPERIENCES in France
With more than £1 million budget, the ‘More to Enjoy’ campaign has been hugely visible throughout the London underground, national press and online media for 4 months, with the main website: www.gotofrancenow.com
Through various activity-based slogans and concepts, the campaign has aimed to translate a fun and dynamic France for British visitors, one of its main target markets, through original experiences along with the well-established landmarks.
The Awards’ selection process
Over 100 articles were submitted from across the UK media, which when coupled with our own intense scan for the best travel articles on France, made the shortlist selection process all the more difficult. The calibre of writing, along with your ability to speak directly to your audience about your experiences in France, was certainly remarkable.
A jury of experts, and the Atout France team, pre-selected articles according to the campaign’s themes: Waterside Activities, Nature & Outdoors, Gastronomy, Golf, Festivals & Events, Art & Culture, City Breaks, Seaside Lifestyle and Wine Tourism. These themes had been selected as the best representations of what makes France so special. Once the nominees were chosen, the articles were posted on the Atout France UK Facebook page where the general public chose the winners with nearly 9,000 votes!
And the 2013 French Press Awards winners are
Best Travel Article on Waterside Activities:
Ray Kershaw: Afloat in Alsace – France Magazine – Summer 2012
Gillian Thornton: Emerald Enchantment – Destination France – Winter 2012/2013
Chris Leadbeater: Welcome to France’s Jagged Edge – The Independent – 6 June 2012
Daniel Start, Chasing Waterfalls, The Guardian – 5 May 2012.
Prize: 3 Nights in the Auvergne for two including entry tickets to attractions and dinners.
Best Travel Article on Nature and Outdoors:
Sarah Baxter: Corsica on a High on the Ile de Beauté – The Independent – 3 August 2012
Jane Knight: France’s Secret Wild West – The Times – 16 June 2012
Martin Hesp: Culinary Delights in the Heart of Beautiful Countryside-Western Morning News – 29 December 2012
Hannah Stephenson, Glamping in France, Yorkshire Evening Post – 8 February 2012.
Prize: 3 Nights in Tarn & Garonne for two on a canal cruise including guided tours and dinners.
Best Travel Article on Gastronomy:
Anthony Peregrine: More Fun Than a Trip to Tesco – Sunday Times – 11 November 2012
Laura Goodman: Voulez-Vous Manger Avec Moi – The Sunday Times Travel Magazine – 1 June 2012
Victoria Trott: Self-Catering Guide to Annecy – France Magazine – February 2013
Eve Middleton, Wine and Dine, France Magazine – April 2012.
Prize: 3 nights in Toulouse for two including entry to the new spa complex, city passes and a guided tour.
Best Travel Article on Golf:
Ben McPartland: Green with Envy – France Magazine – 1 August 2012
Alastair Murray: A Slice of the Good Life On the French Grip – Daily Express – 19 May 2012
Nick Trend: Tee Off in the South of France – Daily Mail Ski & Snowboard Magazine – 1 December 2012
Minty Clinch, Swim Golf Surf, The Independent on Sunday – 4 March 2012.
Prize: 3 nights at the Why Hotel Lille.
Best Travel Article on Festivals & Events:
Catherine Nixey: Lyon’s Light Fantastic – Financial Times – 10 November 2012
Samantha Castle: Carnival on the Cote – North Wales Daily Post – 24 March 2012
Jon Bryant: Port Prepares to Party All Year – France Magazine – 1 January 2013
Alison Weeks, Northern Lights, France Magazine – 1 October 2012.
Prize: 3 nights at the Helios Hotel in Juan-les-Pins for two.
Best Travel Article on Art & Culture:
Mark Stratton:In the Path of the Eagle – France Magazine – Summer 2012
Carmen Konopka: Destination Nord-Pas de Calais – Destination France – Winter 2012/2013
Frank Barrett: Beneath the Skin of Birdsong Country – The Mail on Sunday – 18 March 2013
Harriet O’Brien, At Home with Toulouse-Lautrec in Albi, The Independent – 20 June 2012.
Prize: 3 nights at the Novotel Lille Grand Place for two.
Best Travel Article on a City Break:
Kate Mosse: Carcassonne Ancient and Modern – France Magazine – January 2013
Mary Novakovich: Consider this Charming Medieval City for Your Next Week-End Away – The Telegraph – 22 April 2012
Paul Wade: Angers:A Culture Guide – The Telegraph – 9 January 2012
Joanne Shurvell, Hidden Gems of Europe, Huffington Post – 28 August 2013.
Prize: 3 night city break in Nantes for two including a city pass.
Best Travel Article on Seaside Lifestyle:
Judy Armstrong: In the Pink – France Magazine – May 2012
Tamara Hinson: Push the Boat Out in Style – Metro – 11 May 2012
Mike Fairbairn: Will I go Back Of Corsica – The Sun – 23 September 2012
Jane Knight, La Belle France is Closer Than You Think, The Times – 16 June 2012.
Prize: 3 nights at the Garden Beach Hotel for two.
Best Travel Article on Wine Tourism:
Nigel Hutson: Last of Summer Wine – Practical Caravan – 1 January 2013
Craig Llewelyn: Something for Everyone on the Tourist Menu – The Sunday Times – 22 April 2012
Tomas Clancy: A Secret Taste of Heaven – The Sunday Business Post – 6 May 2012
Fiona Sims, Up Close and Personal with White Vin Man, The Sunday Times – 22 April 2012. Prize: 3 nights in Bordeaux at the Burdigala Hotel.
So congratulations again to everyone. We would also like to thank the 37 destination partners in the campaign, along with the Tour Operators and carriers for their generosity and the exceptional prizes offered.
For further information on the different awards with the nominees and winners, as well as with a word or two from our partners, head over to our event press pack.
So to all who joined us, please do keep writing about France so that we can continue to honour your work and reward it again next year.