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Swansea celebrating Rioja Day on Thursday August 25

Swansea will be celebrating Rioja Day for the very first time on Thursday August 25.

Rioja Day

Swansea BID (Business Improvement District) has teamed up with Swansea Council and local businesses for the event, which it's hoped will become an annual fixture on the city's social calendar.

Following on from the hugely successful Beaujolais Day, which is held on the third Thursday of the month in November, Rioja Day will encourage people to book a table in a city centre restaurant for lunch before continuing to socialise responsibly in the city's pubs and bars well into the evening.

If the event is a success, then it could return every year in June to coincide with the Day of La Rioja in northern Spain - an annual public holiday that marks the anniversary of the Rioja area becoming an autonomous community.

Several Swansea venues will be serving Rioja wine to celebrate the event. Participating venues include Bambu, the Grand Hotel, La Braseria, La Fina, La Parrilla, La Prensa, Li'l London Cocktails, Morgans, No. 6, Peppermint, the Pitcher and Piano, the River House, the Smoke Haus, and Fancy a Rum.

Cllr Robert Francis-Davies, Swansea Council's Cabinet Member for Enterprise, Development and Regeneration, said: "Beaujolais Day has been hugely popular since its inception in Swansea, so the idea is to replicate that experience in the summer with Rioja Day. We'll work as closely as possible alongside Swansea BID to make Rioja Day just as successful because it would be a tremendous boost for local businesses, while also giving local people another fantastic day to mark in their social calendars every year.

"Although this year is a trial, we're looking to develop Rioja Day into an annual event that will further boost trade at a time when we're also working on multi-million plans that will transform the city centre's retail, leisure and recreational offer."

Russell Greenslade, Chief Executive of Swansea BID, said: "When discussing the Rioja Day idea with businesspeople from a wide range of sectors, the response has been phenomenally positive as events such as these tend to offer excellent opportunities to do business and make connections. This is why I would encourage people to support the event and get involved to make it a success, so we can then grow Rioja Day into a firm social calendar event going forward.

"This year's soft launch Rioja Day was the perfect excuse to responsibly kick-off your Bank Holiday weekend. We already have plans in place, working with our partners, to develop the event in June 2017 to kick-start summer in the city just like Beaujolais Day kick-starts Christmas in Swansea."

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