In 2012, a little Alsace village going by the name of Eguisheim was deemed 'France’s favourite village'. The Mayor, Claude Centlivre, surprised, 'thought it was a joke.' When he saw the tourists arriving en masse the day after the prize was awarded, he realised that this was not a joke.
'There were locals, mostly from Alsace or even Germany or Switzerland, having heard about the prize,' he explained in French publication Le Figaro.
'A great sense of pride' animated the people living there, he said. Over time, people from all over were coming to Eguisheim. The following year, this hidden little village with a population of 1700 inhabitants had welcomed 800,000 tourists through its coloured alleyways, compared to 500,000 the year before. The people living there ought to get used to the crowds and cameras because their quiet little village has become 'a place to be.'
New building developments in place
As the Mayor explained in Le Figaro, numerous commodities were installed in the years following the award, such as hotels, restaurants, holiday homes… Which have made it easier to accommodate the passing travellers. It has even been necessary to build supplementary infrastructures after the consecration of the village. The tourist office has gone from 36 to 180 metres squared and a car park with 120 spaces is being built. In 2017, the charming got even more results, with the village recording 700,000 tourists.