Purpose: In an age when a tourist’s gaze is more involved in the daily lives of locals, it is evident that traditional food markets are being rediscovered as a space for recreation. Yet, the pressure of tourism development may result in retail gentrification to the point of losing the sense of local identity. Focusing on the “boutiquing” process at Mahane Yehuda Market in Jerusalem, this paper aims to measure the physical change in the marketplace, to understand merchants’ attitudes towards tourism development, and to differentiate merchants based on their responses to these changes. Design/methodology/approach: Two main research methods were used: comparative mapping of the business mix and in-depth interviews with merchants. The first method was used to characterize the physical change in the market, and the second method was used to examine merchants’ attitudes and responses to tourism development. Findings: There has been a significant physical change in the business mix of the market, with displacing mainly of traditional uses. A strong link between the merchants’ responses to tourism development and their stall ownership status has found. Research limitations/implications: The limitations of the study lie in its nature as a qualitative study of a case study; there is difficulty in generalizing and drawing universal conclusions. Originality/value: Add to existing knowledge regarding merchants’ responses in traditional food markets to tourism development in the context of retail gentrification.
Bibliographical notePublisher Copyright:
© 2020, International Tourism Studies Association.
- Food tourism
- Mahane Yehuda Market
- Merchants’ attitude
- Retail gentrification
- Tourism development
- Traditional food markets