Thanks to the development of winter sports for the Olympic Winter Games Sochi 2014, the region – which was previously a summer tourist destination – now offers year-round activities for tourists.
Between 2009 and 2014, Sochi’s infrastructure was transformed thanks to the construction of new hotels and health resorts. As a result, the range of hotels increased, as did the number and quality of services provided by the city’s hospitality industry.
Sports and events tourism continue to drive hotel occupancy in the Imereti Lowlands and the Krasnaya Polyana Alpine resorts. In 2016, the value of services provided by all health resort facilities in the region reached USD 590 million, an increase of 0.7 per cent over the previous year.
Tourism statistics for the Krasnodar region offer some insight into the growth that the area has enjoyed since the Olympic Games. By 2015, the tourist flow had increased by 26.5 per cent compared to 2013, and by 6.7 compared to 2014. In 2016, the figure was 5.9 per cent higher compared to 2015.
More than 1.1 million people attended the Olympic Winter Games 2014. This momentum continued after the Games: in 2015 the city hosted more than 220 major events, including over 60 at international level. Of those, 179 were sporting events, attracting more than 1.6 million spectators. Some events are held on an annual basis, such as the FIA Formula One World Championship Russian Grand Prix, the Yuri Bashmet Winter International Arts Festival and the All-Russia Amateur Hockey Festival ‘Night Hockey League’. Sochi also played host to many rounds of the 2018 FIFA World Cup. In 2016, Sochi hosted 229 events, in 2017, 308 events and in 2018, 330 events.