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Volume XIII |

Present and perspectives for health tourism – spa services in Romania

Abstract: The current paper aims at assessing the extent to which spa tourism developed in Romania after the fall of the communism, and to investigate the typology of Romanian spas in order to identify the drawbacks and opportunities of this sector from the supply perspective. The wellness offer (day spas, destination spas, medical spas, mineral spring spas and hotel spas) and the territorial distribution of spa centres within the country are analysed. The current trend is to diversify the offer, with numerous projects for day spas and destination spas within towns, and even resorts offering accommodation, sport and entertainment facilities, as well as spa facilities and programmes. Most of the spas in Romania are focusing only on wellness, less than 10% of them offering advice regarding nutrition, and only few meditation. The balneary spas, capitalizing the mineral and thermal spings, have failed to meet the demands and standards of the international market, thus loosing the fame they enjoyed before 1990.

Volume XIII |

The pattern of demografic changes in Craiova and its peripheries – causal or catalytic agent in the urban growth?

Abstract: The paper analyses the demographic structure of Craiova and its neighbouring area, taking into consideration the suburbanization process and the strong demographic decline that followed after 1990. The demographic potential is the inner driving force of the urban and represents a decisive factor for the territorial changes that the contemporary post-communist town is facing in the context of an ever-increasing mobility and transformations of the core-periphery relationships.

Volume XI |

Urban image analysis through visual surveys. Craiova town (Romania) as a case study

Abstract: The cities were affected by the processes of urban revitalization, aiming to be included in the global market competition where they try to attract more economic resources and to achieve an important position, thus transforming their perceptual urban representations. Some cities opted to reshape their urban spaces, projecting an image that attracts the visitor and the resident, while at the same time they try to manage the issues and tensions associated with this process of urban transformation.
Thus, the city image is increasingly exposed to recent progresses and transformations of infrastructures and land use. This article aims to outline the perception of the urban image at micro- level scale with the help of data analysis resulting from the VPS- Visual Preference Survey, conducted in Craiova town, Romania. A new urbanistic approach to measure the urban image, avoiding the classical Lynch model of analysis, is the VPS, developed by Anton Nelessen, which is a process that allows the residents to take part in the urban assessment and to create a new development vision for the future. By ranking different images of places, people from Craiova express their perception on the urban image, taking into consideration four urban aspects: public spaces, built environment, transportation and socio-cultural environment, and building in this way the community they want to see in the future. The results show that the city image needs some major urban interventions in terms of design, architecture and functionality of the public urban spaces. Consequently, some principles are proposed to public actors for improving the four main sections discussed in the survey.

Volume X |

Safety and Security in Tourism. Case Study: Romania

Abstract: For many countries, tourism is considered as having a great economic importance, with quite a large share in the country’s GDP. Hence, the number of foreign tourists is highly important. But worldwide, the threats and dangers are more frequent, and consequently tourists are becoming more aware of the necessity of a safe destination. Foreign tourists are educated in the spirit of touristic safety, and when choosing a particular destination, this aspect is of utmost importance. The image of the country or any touristic destination depends on the quality of the touristic products, which include not only the natural and cultural patrimony or the economic environment, but also the social and political climate, state order and citizens’ safety. A country with a good image for safe tourism can use it as a competitive advantage and attract different segments of the international tourism market. The paper presents some of the safety issues in tourism, focusing on the main aspects of tourism safety in Romania, based on the travel and tourism competitiveness index, with special focus on the third pillar – Safety and Security and the results of an on-line survey with managers and employees in tourism activities.