The Nicaraguan-based Custom Elevation, a company founded by three Notre Dame students in 2012, continues to expand its sale of handicrafts to improve the lives of artisans.Co-founder and senior Christian Estrada, who is from Nicaragua, said Custom Elevation bases itself on the principle of fairness.“It is about giving the artisans a chance,” he said. “It is about letting them do what they love and getting paid fairly.”Estrada said the company has developed new handmade products since it began selling its goods at the Hammes Notre Dame Bookstore in April 2013.“We expanded our product line to fit the likes of our various customers,” Estrada said. “In the collegiate market, we have added the Salbeke Hand-woven Bag. We introduced this product in early December and have received quite a bit of attention.”The company introduced the new products after assessing the marketability of the Amaka Hammocks featured in the company’s first product launch.“The hammock has proven to be a very tough product to sell because of the lack of summertime activities around Notre Dame and the high price point due to royalty expenses, transportation and packaging,” Estrada said. “This is why we introduced the Salbeke.”Estrada said the artisans employed by Custom Elevation work out of a renovated building in the Nicaraguan city of Masaya, where the production of handicrafts stretches back many generations.“The conditions in Masaya in general are still very bad. Given that the artisan community is extensive, it will be hard to fix this problem right away, but our vision is to help change the lives of as many artisans as possible,” Estrada said. “By eventually expanding to more and more universities and institutions, we will be able to increase the size of our facility and the number of workers we employ.”Between business classes and collaboration with recent Notre Dame alumnus Roberto Pellas, Estrada said he has met with officials from Texas Christian University (TCU) and the University of Texas at Austin to market Custom Elevation’s products bearing the logos of each institution.“I just met with TCU’s licensing director and it went very well,” Estrada said. “We have basically secured a license with them and will most probably start selling at their bookstore around June.”In addition, Estrada said Custom Elevation has set its sights on the corporate logo market.“This will be pretty much like the collegiate market in that we will personalize our products with institutional logos,” he said. “We are also selling our generic products [without logos] at different boutiques in Nicaragua and here in the states.”Tags: Custom Elevation
Stari Grad on the island of Hvar has decided to ban the opening of new hostels, with the aim of managing the development of quality and the offer of accommodation facilities.Namely, recently at the session of the City Council with the third amendments to the spatial plan of the city of Stari Grad, it was decided that it will no longer be possible to build or arrange existing real estate for the needs of hostels, reports Morning paper. The decision was made through the argument that guests staying in a hostel generally stay much shorter in the destination and spend much less. Therefore, the opening of new hostels in the Old Town is prohibited, and currently there are two existing hostels, with a capacity of about 200 beds.”We were not even sure if this idea would work for us, but we realized that we do not want to have “problems” like our colleagues in Hvar or Novalja, where mass party tourism has developed, as we would like. avoid. Stari Grad is a place with 2400 years old history and culture, the center is under UNESCO protection and we decided in time to intervene to direct tourism towards cultural tourism and high quality tourism. Mayor Antonio Škarpa told Jutarnji list.The decision to prohibit the construction or arrangement of existing real estate for the needs of hostels was included by the city fathers in Articles 89 and 90. Amendments to the Spatial Plan of the Old Town stating that “hotels, boarding houses and other catering and tourist buildings other than hostels may be built ”, And“ within the zones of catering and tourist purposes, only hotels, tourist resorts, camps and tourist moorings, such as pontoons, piers, piers and moorings, can be built or arranged ”.Photo: Stari Grad Tourist BoardThe attempt of the city authorities to influence the development of accommodation capacities of the destination is currently visible only in the case of hostels, and the city administration will announce measures to raise the quality of private accommodation in the near future. accommodation, offers and infrastructure.On the one hand, we can certainly praise the need and desire for strategic and sustainable development of the tourist destination, but on the other I must emphasize that such moves cannot be made through a single decision, ie by limiting only one part of the accommodation. Strategic and sustainable development must be defined through various elements and everyone must have a clear vision of destination development through the Master Plan for the development of a tourist destination. One-off measures can certainly never, even in this case, yield concrete results.Certainly, quality accommodation is one of the first preconditions for the development of high quality tourism, but the motive for coming is not accommodation but a tourist destination. So, from the arrangement and offer of the entire content of the tourist destination, and so of course the offer of quality accommodation. The first question is what kind of tourists do we want and what can we offer them, apart from the sun and the sea? Do we have facilities and offerings at that level that will satisfy their needs and desires? etc.… Without a long-term development strategy that accurately defines all processes, there is no quality and sustainable success.
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