Hola December! Looking good. 🙂
It was my first Finos Palmas tasting since 2013, so I was pretty excited when I got an invitation to this year’s special event in Sevilla, which was held in the exquisite Palacio de las Dueñas. Read all about it (and see more pics!) over here on Azahar’s Sevilla…
Since launching We Love Tapas I’ve been thinking a lot about the relationships I’ve built over the years with the owners of my favourite bars in Sevilla. My connections with these people goes way back, long before I started doing my own food tours about six years ago. So it’s not just “business related”. Actually, it’s not based on business at all. We all just like and respect each other. So when I started my Sevilla Tapas blog back in 2007 they were keen to be a part of it, and when I began doing tours they were all very supportive.
With We Love Tapas I’ve been very fortunate, with everyone welcoming my fabulous Team just like they are an extension of me, and showing them every courtesy. You have to understand that these people don’t need my business. They are all very successful, with packed bars and regular clientelle. So it’s not like I’m doing them any favours by bringing my tours to their bars. Turns out that they end up doing me favours, by holding tables for me and making sure my people get top service, sometimes with a few perks thrown in. Blows me away. Especially as they are constantly being pestered by new food tour companies showing up and wanting deals. I don’t ask for deals. But they help me out and every now and then I’m asked a favour, and of course I’m always happy to help. Because we’re friends. It’s a wonderful working environment… stopping in to visit your friends all the time. I love my job. 🙂
Yesterday evening I was thrilled when I got an email from Annie Manson saying that while flying from Geneva to Málaga she’d seen me mentioned and quoted in the EasyJet’s April Inflight magazine, and congratulating me on such a great PR coup. At first I was totally flummoxed as I had no idea why I would be in there, then when I saw the article (about the Feria in Sevilla) written by Derek Workman, I remembered meeting Derek for tapas a while back and spending a pleasant leisurely lunchtime chatting about Sevilla stuff. He was in town doing research for this article as EasyJet was about to launch a new London-Sevilla route in April. So that was quite exciting! If you want to read the article (which starts on page 50) you’ll have to register, which is a bit of a pain but only takes a minute.
Anyhow, after a few emails back and forth to Annie I got into bed with my iPhone to read a few last tweets and emails before sleeping and saw that one of my favourite tapas bars was mentioned in an article by Shaney Hudson, an Australian travel writer now living in Holland who was here on a research visit last autumn. Then I saw that my tapas tours got a personal recommendation from Shaney in her Essential Guide to Sevilla (!!!). How cool is that?
All of which has me thinking this morning about all the amazing connections I’ve made, and continue to make, via my blogs, Twitter and – okay I admit it – even Facebook. I’ve made friends and biz contacts, and have also found work, as a result of not only sitting in front of my laptop (or with iPhone in hand) several hours a day, but also by going out to meet many of these people when they are in town. Which of course I love as one of my favourite things to do is show people “my Sevilla” and especially take them out for tapas. So anyone who still thinks social media is silly is, well, silly. 😉