INDONESIA’S Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy supports the efforts of the Medan city government in developing the tourism sector and the creative economy. One of them is by preparing a travel pattern of tourists from the super priority destination of Lake Toba to then stop in the city of Medan and enjoy a variety of attractions, one of which is culinary.

According to the Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy, Sandiaga Uno, during his working visit to North Sumatra, he visited the heritage area of ​​Kesawan in Medan, (27/3) said that the Medan City Government plans to fix the old town area with the branding “The Kitchen of Asia” which will present Medan and Asian specialties as the main attraction.

“The magnet of the city of Medan is a culinary experience, and we need to complete it with historical stories or good story telling. Story telling will add value as well as appeal that will provide a more quality experience for tourists. He gave an example of a story about the house owned by the famous merchant Tjong A. Fie,” said Sandiaga Uno while visiting the Kesawan heritage area with the Mayor of Medan, Muhammad Bobby Afif Nasution.

He explained, like in Tjong A Fie, how there was a leader and rich merchant of Chinese ethnic descent who died 100 years ago but gave him memories. This place has great meaning and history because of his role in maintaining ethnic and religious harmony in Medan.

“The Ministry of Tourism is making a travel pattern for tourists to explore the Lake Toba Super Priority Tourism Destination (SPTD). With various infrastructures being accelerated, tourists will also be encouraged to visit the city of Medan,” he noted.

Sandiaga added, we are making a travel pattern for how tourists to Lake Toba’s Super Priority Destinations can stop in Medan because of the magnetic history and culinary tourism. I hope tourism can revive the economy by implementing strict and disciplined health protocols.

“Finally, our hope is that in the arrangement of ‘The Kitchen of Asia’, it must be strengthened by the adaptation of technology and the diversity of products of the creative economy,” he affirmed.

Meanwhile, the Mayor of Medan, Bobby Afif Nasution realized that Medan did not have sufficient natural wealth to be developed as potential in the tourism sector. However, culinary can be a big force in attracting tourists.

“This culinary is the answer to all problems in the city of Medan. We know that Medan may not have good enough natural potential, for that we must create and collaborate with stakeholders,” he stated.

Regarding the Kesawan area which will be transformed into ‘The Kitchen of Asia’, Bobby Nasution explained that Kesawan itself is one of the old city areas in Medan. Many cultural heritages with beautiful architecture still stand. The improvements were combined with the well-known Medan culinary branding, not only authentic culinary delights from North Sumatra and Indonesia, as well as Asia.

“For this reason, the Kesawan area must really be developed, not changed. We return to back, which means we return the buildings here that have their own stories so that they add their own taste,” he concluded. []