A wowing Ċittadella Experience

Ministry for Gozo
Cittadella App

The brief

Restoring passion for an ancient history

The restoration of Gozo’s Cittadella tourist attraction is without doubt one of the key renovation projects to take place in our island over the last decade. Our ancient old fortified town was given a major restoration, co-financed by the European Union. The Ministry for Gozo knew it was important to showcase this expansive project to local citizens and visitors, announcing the Cittadella’s historical and cultural rebirth through a large-scale event ‘Swar u Hajja’.  Keen Ltd was commissioned to coordinate publicity for the cultural launch, promoting the Cittadella as a unique event space and cultural hub, and further to boost the site as one of the top places of interest on the Island. Our focus was to inspire local residents to rediscover this amazing attraction and to take ownership of its heritage. Our tech team was briefed to design, produce and launch an avantgarde mobile app facilitating a 3D virtual experience of the site and attractions whilst offering unique historical insights to the users.

The challenge

Driving interest & pride for local heritage

The key challenge was fueling local passion for ‘The Cittadella Experience’. As with many historical attractions, local residents are less likely to visit those that are on their doorsteps, so our team needed to change islanders’ perceptions of what a Cittadella visit holds for them. The restoration had been transformational, incorporating immersive audio/visual presentations which sensationally bring history to life, so we had to get that across in an affecting way.


Furthermore, the brief incorporated the smooth set up and launch of the Citadella App within the ancient fortified walls constructed far before topics like wi-fi were even dreamed of. Last but not least, we had to focus on the effective touristic promotion of the historical wealth offered inside The Cittadella, and the easy-to use smartphone application with its vibrant 360° virtual tour.


The strategy

Exploiting technology to explore history

Funneling our expertise of UI design and App development, we produced an appealing and user-friendly Mobile App offering an informative and visual experience to two different audiences, for both on-site visitors and for people wanting to experience the gems of the Cittadella site from the comfort of their own homes. So our tech enthusiasts crafted their plan.


Visitors strolling around the site want to learn more about the site’s unique heritage, so we had to facilitate an easy access to a captivating multimedia tour in the Mobile App. Harnessing blue-tooth technology, sequences within the tour were programmed to trigger when users pass our blue beacons to prompt audio and visual information underlying the experience.


The second great facility of the App was aiming to target the armchair traveler and history enthusiasts who may be accessing the App from anywhere around the world. This component should offer stunning 360° views of the Citadel. Branded Google Cardboard 3D glasses were  made available to further enhance this 360° experience.


Gathering local insight.

Our team had to delve into the current user-experience on site to observe user behaviour, routes, challenges and opportunities for our project. We further researched the local site perception and reviewed effective promotional channels for both audiences for the big launch.


Activating our ideas.

Until a solution comes to life, months of brainstorming, planning, storyboarding and designing will have to be done. Our creative minds developed and thoroughly tested the App to wow the audiences with a sleek user-centric experience.


Rebirth of The Citadella Experience.

The big launch was supported by custom promotional products and a thought-through PR strategy capitalising on the great vibe of the actual project and our avantgarde digital solution. Our tech team continued observing the user flows and areas for enhancement in the coming weeks as user numbers kept growing.


Bringing history bang up to date!

Our multimedia team, plotted out the various visitor journeys happening inside the Cittadella, for consideration in the App and set up the visual and historical content in the most user-friendly manner. We got a dedicated drone camera team on site to film the 360°views of the Citadel for our Virtual Reality tour. The locations of the blue beacons triggering the multimedia experience in the App, were mapped out and tested.


Our team designed the branding concept and advertising resources around the ‘Swar U Hajja’ cultural launch event.  We further enhanced the Cittadella Experience marketing materials with the concept and design of promotional booklets outlining historical milestones, highlights of the restoration project and  completing information of the Citadel’s museums and the Cathedral.

The result

Making the past present!

The re-launch event aiming to improve local interest and promote The Cittadella’s restoration received superb attendance and became a great success. Visitors from near and far were visibly excited about what the site now had to offer, using the VR glasses at the event to observe the 360° virtual tour available via the App. This successful relaunch left a lasting legacy on The Cittadella, locals are inspired by and proud of the Cittadella, and various popular events are held at the site with great attendance by visitors from both audiences.

2000 app downloads
at the event
10000 people
attended the event
1000 3D glasses
given free at the event



I started collaborating with Keen Ltd, particularly Mr John Falzon, during my post as Artistic Advisor with the Ministry of Gozo (2015-2017). John was responsible for all marketing, branding and advertising of major programmes such as ‘Christmas in Gozo’ and ‘Easter in Gozo’, the opening events of ‘Cittadella’ and even singular events such as ‘Umani’ and ‘Tribali’ Concert, all of which were a huge success thanks to Keen. I thoroughly enjoy my time working with John, and came to know him as a truly valuable asset to any project. He is honest, dependable, and ready to go that extra mile to achieve the best results. He is well knowledge and experienced in the marketing industry and is always exploring new ideas and innovative strategies in his field.


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