Estonian resorts hoping to cash in on Russian tourists

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Resorts in northeastern Ida-Viru County report being nearly booked out as droves of tourists from St. Petersburg and Moscow head to Estonia for the New Year holidays.

Jekaterina Gritskova, press secretary of the Narva-Jõesuu Spa & Sanatorium, says that the number of Russian tourists visiting their resort this winter was already 15 percent more than it was last year, partly thanks to an extensive advertising campaign by the business development agency Enterprise Estonia urging Russians to visit Tallinn.

Gritskova explained that most of the spa guests would in fact head to Tallinn to celebrate New Year’s Eve, spending time in Ida-Viru resorts before and after the big day.

Representatives of the Toila Spa Sanatoorium and the Meresuu Spa & Hotel said that, compared with last year, their bookings of Russian visitors for the holidays had jumped 28 percent and 30 percent respectively.

In Russia, New Year’s Day is by far the largest celebration of the year, dwarfing Orthodox Christmas.