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February 2012 ● Cities of the World…MILAN, ITALY ● The World of Aviation...OPEN SKIES BETWEEN AUSTRALIA AND JAPAN ● Exhibitions News…ITE & M.I.C.E. 2012 HONG KONG ● Asian World...SHANGHAI PLANS TO BE GLOBAL RMB HUB BY 2015 ● Middle East & North Africa News...2012 MUSCAT ARAB TOURISM CAPITAL ● Market Review...SHOWCASING THE CARIBBEAN ● Tourism News...15 PLACES TO GO IN 2012 ● Germany News…WINE HERITAGE AND NATURE IN GERMANY ● EL SALVADOR…A DESTINATION READY FOR SUCCESS

TATW Monthly 2012 © Bushy Park, Teddington, UK.

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Mi l a n, It al y.

By Caroline Laspas, editor… Italy‟s 2nd largest city is famous for fashion catwalks, pizza and infinite numbers of cafés! In truth the city has much more to offer with a great canal district and a delightful castle. Here in the February edition of Tourism around the World Monthly our correspondents with the assistance of local knowledge help visitors get the most out of a short visit to this great Italian city. To start your trip off with splendour, head for the train station, Stazione Centrale. It is a site to behold due to its enormous scale and stunning architecture. It is reminiscent of Union station in Washington D.C., USA. Next stop a traditional Italian bar, never open in the evenings but instead the place to take a coffee and a croissant in the morning. Real Italian coffee houses are totally different from exported brands like Starbucks or Café Nero, Italians tend to stand at the bar to take their shot of espresso coffee and then get on with their day.

Cities of the World MILAN

there are several restaurants. While a late night walk up Corso Garibaldi to Corso Como will see plenty of bars and buzzing nightclubs. Piazza della Scala is the home of one of the world‟s most famous opera houses. Close by is Piazza Duomo, Milan‟s immense main square full of people and pigeons. The Cathedral (Duomo) is so different in appearance to any other church from the roof you have wonderful views of the city. Nearby is the Galleria Emanuele II a magical covered walkway. It is an old tradition to walk into the centre of the arcade and turn your heel 3 times in the private parts of the bull mosaic in the floor for good luck!

T he C ol um ns of S an Lo ren zo , Mi l an.

P i az za C av our, Mi l an.

From the station, walk down Via Vittor Pisani and Via Turati before reaching Piazza Cavour and head under the arch into Via Manzoni. This is the fashion district. The beautiful Via della Spiga and Via Monte Napoleone are where most of the famous shops are while the huge Emporio Armani is next to Montenapoleone metro station. The actual fashion houses and catwalks are closed to the public and often in a different part of town. Later on a walk down Via Brera, the pedestrian part of the street is where you can experience the „aperitivo‟. As people in Milan are not big drinkers, bars tempt customers in with the offer of free food - pasta, rice, small paninis etc. Just order a drink and it is all you can eat, even in the sunshine in cooler months. For bigger more traditional Italian meals, like risotto, go to the cobbled streets of Via Mercato/Corso Garibaldi where

For a real special experience, walk along the Via Mercanti and Via Dante and the stunningly different Castello Sforzesco comes into view. It‟s free to enter the castle with payment only needed to access the museum. At the back end of the castle lies the charming Parco Sempione. Another attractive park is the Giardini Pubblici, which offers a small but interesting national history museum and planetarium. Venice is not the only Italian city with picturesque waterways; the Naviglio area of Milan is full with bars and restaurants on both sides of 2 canals. Walking past the towering city gates of the Porta Ticinese you should head up Corso di Porta Ticinese until you come across another old city-gate like structure; here is the ancient Basilica di San Lorenzo a hotspot for the young of Milan to get together. If you have a bit more time to spend, a short train journey will take you to the beautiful town of Como, on the banks of the famous Lake Como, where the green hills full dramatically into the water. Italy is famous for ice cream as well as pizza, and here in Como both the ice cream, pizza and the architecture are great! Milan is a city that offers something for everyone and can be walked around and enjoyed even in a short period of time. ■ www.tourism aroundtheworld.co.uk 2


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Associations of the reference field

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A i rbus 380

The World Of Aviation

DUBAI INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT EXPANSION PLANS At Dubai Interna-

tional Airport, passenger numbers grew 8% in 2011 boosted by additional flights to the Gulf Arab region‟s main transport hub. The world‟s 4th busiest airport in terms of international passenger and cargo traffic handled 51.0 million passengers last year up from 47.2 million in 2010. The growth trend is set to continue in 2012 with the two largest airlines, Emirates and flydubai, to receive additional aircraft throughout the year. The strongest passenger growth came from India, the United Kingdom, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Qatar, Germany and the United States. Dubai International Airport plans to invest EU€5.93 (UK£4.95) billion in airport expansion to boost its capacity from 60 million passengers a year to 90 million by 2018.

OPEN SKIES BETWEEN AUSTRALIA AND JAPAN Australia and Japan have signed an open skies aviation agreement that will allow Australian carriers to fly into smaller Japanese airports. This comes as national airline; Qantas looks to set up a low-cost airline partnership in Japan. The deal allows unlimited flights between the 2 countries, including to Tokyo's Haneda airport, and lifts capacity restrictions at Tokyo's larger Narita Airport from 2013. It also makes it possible for Australian airlines to fly beyond Japan to 3rd countries for the 1st time, including key markets such as China and Europe. Qantas, Japan Airlines and Mitsubishi have announced plans to launch a new domestic airline Jetstar Japan - as part of the Australia's carrier's wide-ranging overhaul to improve profitability. More than one million people fly between Australia and Japan each year and passenger numbers are forecast to grow by 25% by 2020.

WORLD ROUTE DEVELOPMENT FORUM PREPARES FOR ABU DHABI LANDING The 18th World Route Development Forum will take place from 29 September -2 October 2012. The event will be hosted by Abu Dhabi Airports Company (ADAC) and supported by official carrier Etihad Airways. World Routes is the largest global event of its kind which this year will take place in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates, one of the most easily accessible and centrally located cities on earth. These factors combined look set to make this event the largest World Route Development Forum to date with over 2,750 air service industry professionals expected to attend. The event attracts all kinds of airlines with lowcost, charter, regional and flag carriers all in attendance and represented by delegates who are responsible for making decisions on both new and existing routes.

European aviation history. The Oslo based carrier has signed for delivery of a total of 222 new aircraft which has a contract value at list prices of EU€16.85, (UK£14) billion. This is thought to be the largest single investment in Norway. The order includes 122 aircraft from Boeing; 100 of the new Boeing 737 max8 and 22 next-generation 737-800. Norwegian has also signed an agreement with airbus which includes firm orders of a total of 100 airbus a320neo as well as purchase rights for an additional 50. This is Norwegian‟s 1st aircraft purchase from airbus. HONG KONG AIRLINES ALL CLUB Hong Kong Airlines has taken delivery of its first all Club Class Airbus A330-200 passenger aircraft in time for the launch of the London route, and the first of 30 Airbus A320s to operate within Asia. From 8 March, Hong Kong Airlines will launch a daily non-stop service between London and Hong Kong, featuring a unique all Club Class seating configuration on the route. Each of these ultra-modern aircraft will showcase 2 premium cabins: „Club Premier‟ and „Club Classic‟. Both Clubs have been created to deliver the airline‟s exceptional signature service with an ambient experience in a spacious environment, extensive coverage of WIFI service, stunning sky bars, superior limousine service and state-of-the-art entertainment system. AIR ASIA ENDS EUROPEAN FLIGHTS Air Asia will end flights to Europe because of high fuel prices and weak demand. The carrier's cheap long-haul associate airline, Air Asia, will instead focus on new routes and expanding in its core markets of Australia and East Asia. Air Asia will end its flights to India in February and stop flying to London and Paris after the end of March. The airline blames the slow European economy, the continuing Euro zone debt crisis and „polluting‟ taxes. BA TO RESUME LIBYA FLIGHTS FROM MAY British Airways plans to resume flights to Tripoli 3 times a week from 1st May 2012. The return of services between London Heathrow and Tripoli follows a thorough security review in conjunction with the UK Government and the Libyan authorities.

COPA AIRLINES ADDS DESTINATIONS IN THE AMERICAS Copa Airlines will begin a non-stop service in June 2012 from Panama to 4 new destinations; Recife, Brazil; Liberia (Guanacaste), Costa Rica; Las Vegas, Nevada; and the island of Curacao. Passengers who depart or connect to these new flights through Copa's Hub of the Americas at Tocumen International Airport will have access to a network of 63 destinations in 29 countries in North, Central and South America, and the Caribbean. As part of the airline's strategic plan, Copa Airlines will add 10 new Boeing 737-800s Next Generation aircraft this year, for a total of 83 aircraft. ■

NORWEGIAN PLACES LARGEST AIRCRAFT ORDER IN EUROPEAN HISTORY Norwegian air shuttle claims to have placed the largest order for delivery of new aircraft in

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S i l aden Is l and, I ndon es i a

VISIT LAOS YEAR 2012 The Lao government has approved EU€570,000 (UK£473,500) for the „Visit Laos Year 2012‟ campaign. The money will mostly be used to launch a global publicity campaign. The funds will enable Laos to attend international travel trade events to promote the country and invite the worldwide media to visit. The Lao people have also been requested to act as ambassadors of their country‟s culture and traditions, and to display the warmth and hospitality that greatly contribute to Laos‟ reputation as a sought after tourist destination. While many tourists appreciate the natural beauty and peacefulness of Laos, there still needs to be more information about the country. Laos held its 1st Visit Laos Year in 1999-2000. BRIGHTER FUTURE FOR JAPAN Japan had a bad year after the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami that put the country‟s tourism industry into a downward spiral that continues until today. But Japan‟s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry is determined to put the island nation back on the map as a premium destination for luxury travel. Starting with a new business jet terminal at Narita International Airport, authorities hope to reposition Japan as a must-visit destination for top-end travellers, focusing on 4 unique destinations: Kyoto, Okinawa, Kanazawa and Naoshima. The new business jet terminal will provide a dedicated space for private jet travellers to go through arrival formalities, with its own departure slot and parking apron, when it opens this spring. Features will include private arrival desks, a helicopter shuttle service that will whisk passengers to central Tokyo in 20 minutes, and a web portal where visitors can book jet departure or arrival slots online. In addition, Kansai International Airport in Osaka and Chubu International Airport in Nagoya are now equipped to receive private jets all year round, 24 hours a day, making Japan even more accessible for visitors arriving in their own aircraft. New hotels including Ritz-Carlton properties in Kyoto (Feb 2014) and Okinawa (May 2012), a Four Seasons in Kyoto (Feb 2014) and an Aman resort in Tokyo (2014) are set to open over the next 2 years. The development of an environment for luxury travel will provide a chance for new employment and activities for mid-size businesses and young designers and creators. BALI’S NEW TOURISM MASTER PLAN The Bali administration is to draft a master plan on the development of the island‟s tourism industry to map out strategic measures to improve the sector. The master plan would include 4 main issues: tourism industry development, destination development, tourism marketing strategy and institutional management. The master plan will refer to the national master plan, which stipulates goals and long-term strategies to develop tourism at the national level.

ASIAN WORLD

The document has determined 50 main tourist destinations nationwide, as well as 88 „strategic destinations‟ and another 222 destinations that to be developed further by 2025. Last year, foreign tourist arrivals to the island were slightly above the government‟s target of 2.7 million people, a rise of 10.57% from 2,493,058 people in 2010. Culture has become Bali‟s characteristic for tourism development. The people‟s way of life is something that attracts many tourists. Tourists are also interested to come to Bali even when it is located outside „the centre of tourism‟ in South East Asia, which comprises Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand and this is thanks to the island‟s unique culture. The task is to make sure this culture is sustainable, instead of fading. 742,500 Foreign tourist arrivals came to Indonesia in December 2011, up by 12.47% from December 2012. In total, 7.65 million foreign tourists came to Indonesia throughout 2011, which was up by 9.24% from 2010. Foreign exchange income from the tourism industry was estimated to be EU€6.5, (UK£5.4) billion in 2011, 13.16% higher than that of 2010.

SHANGHAI PLANS TO BE GLOBAL RMB HUB BY 2015 Officials from the city of Shanghai and China‟s economic planning agency have announced plans to make the city a global hub for renminbi transactions by 2015. The plan, jointly published by China‟s National Development and Reform Commission and the Shanghai government, laid out a series of smaller goals. This will have a positive effect of tourism and allow for the Yuan and RMB to work side by side.

HA LONG BAY BOATS DO NOT HAVE TO BE PAINTED WHOLLY WHITE More than 500 tourist boats in Ha Long Bay will be decorated with white details instead of being repainted white totally to renovate the site‟s tourism sector. Changing the colour of the bay‟s tourist boats into white was one of the necessary moves to improve local tourism and create a „new face‟ for Ha Long Bay. However, after huge local complaints due to time constraints and financing such a task, the local authorities said that it had not meant to set white as a uniform colour for local tourist boats, so it didn‟t regulate how much white the boats need to be, and that local businesses can devise their own styles. Brown is still the main colour; white is only added as a decoration. Since the colour of Ha Long Bay‟s boats is the image of tourism and the country the change needed serious consideration. To create a synchronised brand name for the boats, local authorities will consider more carefully what percentage of a boat needs to be in white. The move came also as the bay was named on the preliminary list of 7 new natural wonders of the world by the Switzerland-based New7Wonders Foundation last November. However, soon after the order was made, local businesses objected to it saying it would cost them too much, while tourists said local authorities should focus on improving services instead of changing the unique brown colour of local boats. ■ www. t ourism aroundtheworl d.c o. uk

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Tourism News

15 PLACES TO GO IN 2012

There are always some places that attract or do more than any other destination to receive visitors in a given year. 2012 will see some destinations attract more attention and be a must visit destination. TOURISM AROUND THE WORLD Monthly, „‟2012 Must Visit‟‟ is giving a reason to visit… 1. London, Great Britain: The Queen! The Olympics! Charles Dickens turns 200! This year London is preparing for the pomp and circumstance of the Olympic Games, the Diamond Jubilee celebration of the Queen‟s 60th year on the throne and the 200 years of the famous British writer Charles Dickens. New stadiums, public spaces and shopping centres are emerging and re-building the east of the city, while on the western edge a 137-room Waldorf Astoria has opened on a 400-acre estate near Heathrow Airport. 2. Panama: The Gateway! 12 years ago Panama regained control of its canal, and the country‟s economy is ever booming. The capital, Panama City, is full of skyscrapers and modernity. The new „United States-Panama‟ free trade agreement is expected to accelerate an even greater exchange of international people and money with investors flooding to the country. A major development project is the Panama Canal itself, which is in the early stages of a multibillion-euro expansion. The project will widen and deepen the existing canal and add 2 locks, doubling the canal‟s cargo and cruising capacity. Completion is expected by 2014, the canal‟s 100year anniversary. 3. Myanmar: Back on the tourist map after being off-limits for years. With renowned cultural treasures, world-class boutique hotels and deserted beaches, Myanmar has long been high on adventure travellers‟ wish lists. For years, many stayed away in protest of Myanmar‟s authoritarian regime. Now, this is changing and the country is back on the global tourism map. 4. Tokyo, Japan: With tourists slowing returning - there is greater opportunities for those who do. Following the devastation of the earthquake, tsunami and nuclear disaster, Japan is slowing returning to the tourist map. It may not be the top destination for many at present, but for those who do go there have the added bonuses of no crowds, greater accessibility and the same welcoming people with its rich culture and traditions. 5. Uganda: Attractive and Magical. Stability and sustainable tourism restore Africa‟s pearl. Uganda is still considered one of the more stable countries in sub-Saharan Africa. The country is best known to tourists as the home of half of the world‟s last remaining mountain

gorillas, and this year there are more opportunities to spot the elusive creatures. Beyond up-close gorilla encounters, Uganda is also the source of the Nile, boasts mountains that are among the highest in Africa - the Mountains of the Moon in Rwenzori Mountains National Park - and offers formidable white-water rapids for those who dare to try them! 6. La Havana, Cuba: The Cuban capital - within Americans’ reach. A growing number of companies now have licenses to operate trips to Cuba, including National Geographic Expeditions, and the Centre for Cuban Studies. There are also more flights from around the world, connecting Cuba with the rest of the world. 7. Glasgow, Scotland: New Scottish waterfront. Scotland‟s 2nd city now presents a EU€87, (UK£73) million museum designed by Zaha Hadid to go with its new harbour and river promenade. The Riverside Museum is housed in a stunning building, with a 3,000-piece collection devoted to Glasgow‟s rich shipbuilding and engineering past. Its location, along the River Clyde, was once home to many shipyards, and considered the economic heart of Glasgow. But when the industry left, the area stagnated until now.

V i et nam , H a Long B a y.

8. Ha Long Bay, Vietnam: New ways to visit a natural wonder in Southeast Asia. Ha Long Bay is a staggering seascape of 1,600 limestone islands and islets in the Gulf of Tonkin, formed over millions of years. The Unesco World Heritage site was provisionally named one of the world‟s „new 7 wonders of nature‟. Largely untouched by humans and topped with thick jungle flora, the rock formations rise dramatically in conical peaks and pillars from the surrounding waters, which feature offshore coral reefs, freshwater swamps, mangrove forests and sandy beaches. 9. Antarctica: Still remote and exotic. It‟s the 100th anniversary of the race to the South Pole. Marking the achievement of these global explorers is a reminder of our continued fascination with a region that remains still as remote, exotic and evocative as it ever was. www. t ourism aroundtheworl d.c o. uk

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P os t C ards F rom G reec e .

Tourism News

15 PLACES TO GO IN 2012

10. Florence, Italy: A Renaissance city gets a contemporary kick. Since 2009, Florence‟s youthful mayor, Matteo Renzi, has championed efforts to build a fun living city that celebrates its rich history and historic riches. This has resulted in an arts scene inside various medieval palazzi, ancient landmarks restored and reopened to the public for the first time in decades and restaurants abandoning traditional Tuscan staples for sophisticated contemporary food. The city‟s stock of refined hotel offerings has also been elevated by the opulent new St. Regis Florence, which opened in a palatial riverside palazzo in May, and the Grand Hotel Villa Cora, another 5* hotel near the Boboli Gardens. 11. Moganshan, China: Luxury in the former mountain hideaway of Shanghai For much of the early 20th century, Moganshan, a bamboocovered mountain about 3 hours from Shanghai, served as a tranquil retreat for the elite. After a lull, the past decade has seen foreigners repopulating Moganshan‟s sleepy slopes, transforming old villas into homes and guesthouses. And in late 2011, the mountain went upscale with two new luxury properties. The 121-room eco-resort Naked Stables features tree-top villas with Jacuzzis set on balconies overlooking the mountains, and African-inspired „earth huts‟ built with environmentally friendly rammed-earth walls. Set on a tea plantation, the 40-room Le Passage Moganshan takes its inspiration from Moganshan‟s historic manor homes, with century-old recycled wood floors and a magnificent garden planted with 12,000 rose bushes. 12. Koh Rong, Cambodia: A string of islands - an undiscovered Asian paradise. Beyond the temples at Angkor Cambodia has a lot else to offer. One possibility is the Koh Rong Archipelago, whose main island is a 30-minute boat ride from the coastal town of Sihanoukville. Until recently there was no place to stay on this string of islands, but that is about to change when the Song Saa resort opens this year. 13. Vienna, Austria: Modern art spruces up Austria’s imperial capital. Vienna‟s museum scene has undergone a transformation and is ready for visitors. July marks the 150th birthday of its native son Gustav Klimt, the Vienna Secessionist master whose dreamily erotic gold-leaf paintings have become some of modernism‟s most popular (and expensive) works; in a range of exhibitions throughout 2012, more of his pieces will be on display in one place than ever before.

14. South Korea: Golf’s new home in Asia? South Korea is redefining just how luxurious golf resorts can be. With many opening their doors recently, it is taking a golfing holiday to a new dimension. The most prestigious is Haesley Nine Bridges, just outside Seoul, with a clubhouse covered by a huge, sinuous web of wooden beams.

D i l os Is l an d, G re ec e.

15. Dilos-Greece: The land of Gods and Myths Located at the centre of the Cyclades islands in the Aegean Sea, Delos has 2 major claims to fame; it is the birthplace of the Greek gods Apollo (the god of music and sun) and his twin sister Artemis (the goddess of hunting, wild animals, and fertility) and it was the place after which the Delian League was named because the treasury for the league was kept at Delos. This dry uninhabited archaeological island site held great commercial importance for both the Greeks and Romans as a trading port. The extensive ruins and museum are a must to visit. Access is by boat from the neighbouring island of Mykonos; the famous Greek island for jetsetters.

SLOVENIA - THINK SMALL - THINK LIGHT - THINK GREEN The Virus SW ultra light plane has set out from Slovenia on a two-month journey around the world. Weighing merely 290kgs, this plane, which uses a minimum amount of fuel, was constructed by the Slovenian manufacturer, Pipistrel, a recurrent winner of the NASA award for top energy-efficient planes. Sustainable development in all fields is a priority of Slovenia, which, although one of the smaller European countries, invites the entire international community to become even more devoted to protecting the environment and solving the problem of climate change, protecting local cultures and friendlier social relations. From Slovenia, across Africa to North and South America and the Antarctic and over to Australia and Asia, over Mount Everest and India and back home again, the plane will be piloted by Matevž Lenarčič, a biologist, photographer and nature protectionist. The pilot Matevž Lenarčič will regularly post his impressions about the journey at www.worldgreenflight.com.

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S l ov eni a, B l ed Is l and.

Tourism News

MEXICO CONTINUES STRONGLY INTO 2012 The Mexico Tourism

Board is predicting 52 million tourists will visit Mexico in 2012 after a strong 2011. Hotels in many of the top tourist destinations from Cancun to Los Cabos saw a significant increase in occupancy compared to last year's winter break. Following the launch in September 2011 of a EU€19, (UK£16) million advertising campaign, SECTUR, the Mexican Ministry of Tourism, reported that the number of air arrivals in December 2011 was up 13% compared to the same period in 2010. More than 1.07 million international travellers visited Mexico in December 2011, a record for the month. In addition to an increase of visitors from the U.S. (10.6%) and Canada (9.1%), Mexico received significant year on year increases from Spain (6%), Italy (10.5%), Argentina (21.4%), and France (12.4%). A key focus for the Mexico Tourism Board in 2012 will be to capitalise on, celebrate and promote the start of the new Mayan calendar with a strong awareness campaign aimed at promoting travel to the 5 states that comprise the Mayan World, including Quintana Roo, Campeche, Tabasco, Chiapas and the Yucatan. This further reinforces the Mexican government's goals of aggressively driving a diversified tourism strategy to achieve its goal of ranking amongst the world's top 5 tourism destinations by 2015. QUITO ATTRACTING MORE… Throughout the past 10 years, Quito has improved its facilities with luxury hotels and world class restaurants. As a result, the city has been able to increase by 200% the number of events it has hosted. Moreover, Quito will be able to offer a top rate airport by the end of 2012. Quito´s heritage buildings complement the city´s value as venues: monasteries, churches and museums have hosted meetings, seminaries and cocktails. These unique experiences add to the quality of the events held in Quito, the first ever World Heritage Site. During 2011 more than 90 events were held in the city, which carried along with them more than 26,000 business tourists, generating approximately EU€27.5 (UK£23) million dollars for the capital of Ecuador. Quito´s new airport is being built in Tababela, 25kms away from the city. The airport will occupy 1,500 hectares and will manage 44 operations per hour. The Quito Airport will have parking for 20 airplanes and more than 50 counters to attend visitors. The airport construction is being made according to the IATA normative, which certifies high technology and the best quality of services.

ROYAL CARIBBEAN INTERNATIONAL ANNOUNCES CARIBBEAN AND PANAMA CANAL CRUISES Royal

itineraries are destination rich and visit smaller Caribbean islands less frequented by the cruise line‟s larger ships. Guests can choose from 19 Caribbean and Panama Canal cruises, ranging in duration from 10 to 15 nights, sailing from the seasonal homeport of Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Vision of the Seas features two acres of glass walls, offering guests sweeping views of the Caribbean and the landscapes surrounding the Panama Canal. Guests can try their hand at the ship‟s rock-climbing walls for a view from the ship‟s highest point or choose to relax in the Vision Day Spa. Younger guests will be entertained in the cruise line‟s awardwinning Adventure Ocean and teen programme, with scheduled activities throughout the day. In the evenings, guests can enjoy the cruise line‟s award-winning Broadwaystyle musicals and unwind in the multiple onboard bars and lounges. Royal Caribbean International is a global cruise brand with 22 innovative ships, calling on more than 270 destinations in 72 countries across six continents. The line also offers unique cruise tour land packages in Alaska, Canada, Dubai, Europe, and Australia and New Zealand. BAHAMAS AIMS FOR MARKETPLACE IN 2013 The Bahamas could be the host of the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association's (CHTA) Caribbean Marketplace summit again in 2013. Previously held on the island successful, its bid to again host the summit has been met positively. The Caribbean as a destination still continues to face several challenges. Mainly relating to airlift, reasonably priced airlift, and challenges with the air passenger duty on all travel from the UK. This year's conference boasted over 12,000 pre-scheduled appointments, with an increase of 500 compared to last year. The Caribbean Marketplace conference is the premier marketing event of the Caribbean hospitality industry, matching buyers and suppliers through a computerised programme of appointments. CAYMAN ISLANDS GOES FOR 2012 TOURISM The Cayman Islands Department of Tourism is anticipating a strong 2012 following a good year in 2011. Cayman was voted best Caribbean destination by nearly 150,000 voters recently and has also picked up several honourable mentions in multiple categories, including Best Snorkeling, Friendliest Destination and Best Beach Bar in a number of publications. The Department of Tourism reported that 2011 figures were up by 10-30% year-on-year. Room nights and average daily rate have also increased. MICE tourism has become important for the Cayman Islands, while during times when the destination is at low season, sporting events have had a positive impact. ■

Caribbean International has announced the Vision of the Seas‟ winter 2012-13 Caribbean season. The seasonal

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SHOWCASING THE CARIBBEAN

Market Review

At the 30th edition of the Caribbean Travel Marketplace which was held at the Atlantis, Paradise Island from 22nd to 24th January 2012 by Pamela McCourt Francescone

The Caribbean Travel Marketplace, organized by the Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association (CHTA), which is the region's premiere marketing event, this year, posted a 17% increase in buyer companies with 142 in attendance, 11 of which were from Russia. There was also an increase in buyer delegates which totalled 344 against the 314 of 2011. "This marks the 30th consecutive year that CHTA has held the event. It remains the regions most important and largest marketing event and the single most important CHTA benefit for our hotel members,” said Josef Forstmayr, president of CHTA. “The Caribbean Travel Marketplace is the requisite business-to-business marketing event for the Caribbean hotel and tourism industry and at the event hoteliers, tourism providers and wholesalers from around the world scheduled 12,250 appointments over the course of the two-day event up from 11,880 appointments in 2011.” “Tourism is key; it is the fastest way to create jobs, grow the economy and generate income for all,” said Forstmayr. “Through our advocacy programme - Tourism Is Key - we have now run this tourism promotion and awareness campaign in eleven countries.” The four pillars of the CHTA Tourism is Key campaign are: advocacy with governments and citizens, linkages of tourism into local industry, agriculture and services, regional integration, which means improved airlift and less bureaucracy for regional travel, and regional marketing. “Tourism spending is dropping. From 2000 to 2010 we lost EU€3.80, (UK£3.16) billion in revenues,” said Forstmayr. One of our strongest markets, the UK, is suffering from the APD tax which, in March is set to rise to EU€997, (UK£81) per passenger on departures to the Caribbean. Given the historical ties between the Caribbean countries and the UK we are pressing strongly for a revision of this tax. Over the last three years arrivals from the UK have dropped by 23%: which means we received 90,000 fewer British visitors each year.” Cruise arrivals are the largest contributor to the increased number of arrivals to the Bahamas, which totalled 5.6 million in 2011 (+7% on 2010) and are expected to rise further this year. “Last year more than 3.3 million cruise passengers were welcomed to our country, and 70% of these were on all-Bahamas cruises”, said Vincent Vanderpool-Wallace, Minister of Tourism for The Islands of the Bahamas. “Arrivals from the United States from January to October last year totalled 890,227, a drop of 5.5% over the previous year, while from Europe the trend was positive with a 1.9% increase and a total of 64,854 visitors”.

Looking five years ahead the Minister Vanderpool-Wallacer said investments are being made in infrastructure and training for Bahamians. “The redevelopment of Lynden Pindling International Airport began in 2010, and by the time it is completed next year, we will have a new airport with some EU€311, (UK£259) million invested. “There will also be advancement in the development of the islands and island groups outside of Nassau-Paradise Island which receives the majority of our visitors, although it comprises less than 2% of the land mass of The Islands Of The Bahamas. There are 15 other major islands and island groups that we will develop to host increasing numbers of visitors.”

Mrs. Pamela McCourt -Francescone and H.E. The Minister Vincent Vanderpool -W allace.

The largest development currently underway in the Bahamas, expected to cost EU€2.70, (UK£2.20) billion, is the Baha Mar, work on which has started on over half a mile of white-sand beaches near Nassau. Due to open in 2014, the casino-resort, which will be the largest destination resort in the Caribbean, will feature hotels by some of the world‟s leading brands including Hyatt, Sheraton, Nicklaus, Mondrian and Rosewood. ■

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ATF 2012, Indonesi a.

Exhibitions News

ASEAN TOURISM FORUM 2012 SUCCESS More than

1,400 delegates descended on Manado, North Sulawesi, Indonesia on 10-15 January to participate in the 31st ASEAN Tourism Forum (ATF), which featured the ASEAN Tourism Conference (ATC), Travel Exchange (TRAVEX), 35th ASEAN National Tourism Organization (NTO) Meeting, and Ministerial Meeting. The annual ATF is a cooperative regional effort aimed at promoting member countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) as one tourist destination. The event involves all tourism industry sectors in the 10 ASEAN nations: Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam. ATF kicked off in earnest on 13 January with the ATC component under the theme „ASEAN Goes Green‟, during which industry leaders shared the latest information and insights on the region‟s ongoing efforts towards sustainable and eco-conscious tourism. The 3-day ATF 2012 TRAVEX also opened on 13 January at the newly constructed Golden Kawanua Exhibition Hall, and featured B2B sessions between some 1,000 exhibitors and 390 buyers from 51 countries - including 4 new participants from Bulgaria, Egypt, Kuwait and New Zealand - to negotiate contracts to attract more tourists to ASEAN‟s destinations. Host country Indonesia and Thailand formed the largest national contingents with 112 and 92 exhibition booths respectively. Corporate exhibitors participated with around 65 exhibition booths. China, India, Russia, Japan, and South Korea also joined the forum, under the theme „Tourism for a Global Community of Nations‟. Asia Pacific accounted for 48% of the buyers, while 37.6% represented Europe. More than 100 media representatives from 36 countries, including first-time participants from Bahrain and Indonesia, were on hand for TRAVEX. All 10 ASEAN NTOs presented media briefings. This year‟s ATF also introduced its new branding, „Southeast Asia - Feel the Warmth‟, for the 1st time. „Today, the branding is officially used for the first time,‟ said Indonesia‟s Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy Mari Elka Pangestu, Chair of ATF 2012. TTG Asia‟s show daily reported that the branding „is being plagued by disagreements over the inclusion of the „ASEAN‟ word and funding.‟ A 4-year marketing plan was outlined at the event, and will be backed by a budget of USD160,000. Tourism Authority of Thailand Deputy Governor Asia and South Pacific Sansern Ngaorungsi said the plan was to pool common products and activities. Minister Pangestu said that preparations towards ASEAN as a single destination are showing significant

development, though the „Free Visa‟ policy among member nations still needs to be addressed and a prompt solution is necessary. Cambodia and Myanmar have yet to confirm. The minister added that the heads of ASEAN member governments had, in principle, agreed to common visas for non-ASEAN visitors and free visas for the residents of ASEAN nations. Delegates also attended a hosted dinner by Laos, where ATF 2013 will be held next year.

Mrs. Fiona Jeffery

ROYAL HONOURS FOR HEAD OF REED TRAVEL EXHIBITIONS Reed Travel Exhibitions Chairman World Travel Market Fiona Jeffery has been appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in Queen Elizabeth‟s II New Year‟s Honours list. Jeffery‟s award of the OBE is for her services to the travel and tourism industry during her 26 years at WTM, the leading global event for the travel industry. She joined the marketing department of Reed Exhibitions in 1986 and became Group Marketing Manager in 1988, before being promoted to Marketing Director in 1991. In 1992, Jeffery helped launch Arabian Travel Market before becoming WTM Exhibition Director and then assumed the same role for British Travel Trade Fair in 1996. In 2000, she was appointed WTM Managing Director before assuming her current role of WTM Chairman in 2008. Throughout her time in the industry, Jeffery has championed responsible travel, creating an international environmental initiative in 1996 before launching World Responsible Tourism Day in 2007. The 2011 New Year‟s Honours list was chosen based on the UK‟s Prime Minister David Cameroon Big Society initiative, which is focused on people making a real difference to communities through volunteering, fundraising, social action and philanthropy. In 1998, Jeffery launched travel industry water aid charity Just a Drop which aims to reduce child mortality caused by unsafe water. The charity has undertaken more than 92 water aid projects and helped more than 1.5 million children and their families in 29 countries. Fiona is a trustee of the charity The Travel Foundation and she received the Shine Woman of the Year Award in 2008. www. t ourism aroundtheworl d.c o. uk

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W TM London, UK

Exhibitions News

FITCUBA MOVES TO CUBA TOURISM FAIR 2012 IN CAYO SANTA MARIA

The next edition of the International Tourism Fair of Cuba (FITCUBA 2012) will move to Cayo Santa María,north of Villa Clara province, considered the youngest destination of the island. The event will take place from 8-11 May 2012 and will be devoted to

is in the Southeast Mexico state of Quintana Roo and has become famous for its luxury resorts and a historical tourism base of smaller boutique hotels. 5.4 million Americans visited Mexico in 2010. ILTM America will open with a dedicated ILTM Forum to highlight topical research and information specific to the region, revealing trends and solutions and creating a platform for the continent‟s leading luxury travel stakeholders. The following two days will comprise a tabletop event of pre-scheduled appointments between buyer and supplier who have each registered a wish to meet each other prior to the event.

ITE & MICE 2012 HONG KONG - IDEAL PLATFORM TO PROMOTE WELLNESS & MEDICAL TOURISM

Argentina as the Guest of Honour country and to the „family‟ sector as a tourist product. The previous event focused on Havana, Mexico and the multiple destination option. During FIT Cuba 2011 attendees visited places like La Estrella town, Remedios heritage city, Ernesto Che Guevara Memorial in Santa Clara, and Varadero a famous resort. Cuba aims and aspires to receive 2.7 million foreigners in 2012. Constant efforts to sustainably develop this area in harmony with the environment; improve housing facilities; the quality of services; the diversity of its product; and enhance the reputation of the nation to an international level, adds to this spirit.

REED TRAVEL EXHIBITIONS LAUNCHES ILTM AMERICAS Reed Travel Exhibitions, organiser of the leading luxury travel events International Luxury Travel Market (ILTM) and ILTM Asia, has launched the 1st luxury travel one-to-one summit to focus exclusively on the world‟s largest outbound luxury travel market, North America, and the rapidly emerging Latin American market. The 1st ILTM Americas will take place in the luxury resort of Mayakoba, on the Mexican Riviera Maya, from 1 - 3 October 2012 with the full support of Mexico Tourism Board. The summit will follow ILTM‟s successful format of selecting the most discerning luxury travel agents and specialists to meet directly with the world‟s leading luxury travel suppliers. ILTM will carefully select 100 of the estimated 14,000 travel advisors buying luxury products across the Americas to ensure they are the leading agents from the Americas (Central, North and South America). To comply with ILTM‟s policy of pre-qualifying both buyers and exhibitors, each of the buyers and suppliers invited to attend will be accredited for participation in ILTM Americas. Pre-scheduled appointments will be arranged on a strict one-to-one ratio. Mexico‟s GDP is predicted to increase by 334% to $6682 billion by 2050, overtaking the UK, which is predicted to increase by a comparable 149% to EU€$4.3, (UK£3.6) billion across the same period. The Mayan Riviera

ITE & MICE, Hong Kong‟s only travel fair, continues highlight the theme of Wellness and Medical Tourism (WMT) which will next be held from 14-17 June 2012 at the Halls 1A to 1E at the Hong Kong Convention & Exhibition Center.

Hong Kong, with relatively high income and living costs and a population fond of travelling abroad, offers excellent potential as market for WMT. In 2007/08, health expenditure in Hong Kong funded by out-of-pocket payments by households rose by 8.92% to EU€2.70, (UK£2.24) billion, and individually purchased private health insurance rose by 12% to EU€460, (UK£383) million. In 2010, Hongkongers made 84.4 million departures, and incurred EU€13.30, (UK£11) billion on international tourism expenditure, while Japan with a population 18 times of Hong Kong spent EU€21, (UK£18) billion or 1.6 times. Hong Kong thus has a very high per capita spending on international tourism. Scattering in the last Expo were some 50 exhibitors that include hospitals, healthcare groups, clinics, spa and hot spring facilities, hotels and resorts and an official pavilion from Taiwan. The WMT Trade Seminar drew 140 preregistrations. In all, ITE & MICE drew 12000 buyers and trade visitors with a quarter from mainland China and abroad, and additionally 70,000 public visitors with over 70% prefer travelling in FIT, is ideal platform for promoting WMT. WMT exhibitors can enjoy publicity beyond the fairground, before, during and after the Expo. For details, please visit www.itehk.com or contact the Organizer, TKS by email travel@tkshk.com.■ www. t ourism aroundtheworl d.c o. uk

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the global monthly for tourism, m.i.c.e and exhibitions

环球旅游全球电子新闻月刊 全球每月为差旅、旅游业、会议、刺激、会议和陈列

TOURISM AROUND THE WORLD Monthly is a global e-journal for the travel & tourism, M.I.C.E and exhibitions industries. It provides accurate, detailed, informative and useful information and is produced in English. Started in 1997 it has an ever-growing circulation. It is also the official global media support for several key exhibitions within the industry. 环球旅游全球电子新闻月刊是针对旅行与旅游业、M.I.C.E.行业,在全球范围内发行的英语版本电子刊物。它提供准确、详尽 的行业资讯,自1997年创刊以来发展迅速,并成为业内几大卓越展会的官方全球媒体支持方。 TOURISM AROUND THE WORLD Monthly ist ein globales e-journal für Reise und Tourismus, M.I.C.E und Messe und Ausstellungs Industrien. Es bietet akurate, detailierte, informative und brauchbare Informationen und ist hergestellt in Englisch. Seit dem Beginn im Jahre 1997 hat es eine kontinuierlich steigende Auflage. Es ist auch die offizielle globale Medium Unterstützung für viele Zielmessen und Ausstellungen inerhalb der Industrie

www.tourismaroundtheworld.co.uk TOURISM AROUND THE WORLD MONTHLY part of Laspas Associates. Aegean House, 71 Blandford Road, Teddington TW11 0LG, UK T: +44 208 943 9449 M: +44 7918 103703 E: info (@) tourismaroundtheworld.co.uk

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Youn El Simen, Lebanon , (© Maria Papasarandis )

Middle East & North Africa News

OMAN STARTS 2012 WITH MUSCAT ARAB TOURISM CAPITAL At the Al Bustan

Palace Hotel the official launch for Muscat as the Arab Tourism Capital in 2012 took place recently. Hosted by Oman's Tourism Ministry and the Muscat 2012 Organising Committee, the evening saw the announcement of the winning Muscat 2012 brand; the launch of a year-long calendar of internationally significant arts, sports and cultural tourism events, starting with 15 events from January to March 2012; and a call on tourism stakeholders to take responsibility for sustainable development and operations as Oman's tourism growth accelerates. The Ministry's brand competition attracted over 380 entries, many with several designs. Building on public interest in competitions of this kind, the Ministry recently launched a Muscat 2012 photographic competition. The winning Muscat 2012 brand is one that we will be proud to promote in Oman and internationally. The Ministry's policy work in the area of responsibility for sustainable development has continued since its hosting of the 4th World Responsible Tourism in Destinations Conference in 2010.

Statistics bear out the challenges that the government faces, as domestic tourism fell 28% last year to 23.9 million trips from 33.5 million in 2009. In contrast, outbound tourism increased 17% in 2010, with 7.55 million Saudis travelling abroad. Hoping to reverse this trend, the government is investing heavily to build new hotels and improve its transportation infrastructure. The kingdom has more than doubled its hotel projects over the past year, jumping from 46 to 95 projects. The 28,260 rooms that are in development represent 27% of the entire projects in the Middle East. While many of the new hotels are targeting religious tourists in Mecca, new leisure resorts are cropping up on the Gulf and Red Sea coasts and in the mountain areas of Taif and Abha aimed at attracting local families. In addition to rolling out new hotels, the government has also announced plans to

SAUDI ARABIA STRENGTHENS INTERNAL TOURISM Saudi tourism officials and hotels in the kingdom have been stepping up their efforts to entice local residents to travel within the country in hopes of capturing a larger share of the billions of dollars that Saudis spend on vacations overseas each year. The Saudi government is keen to develop its tourism sector as part of an effort to diversity its economy and provide jobs for Saudi nationals. Government expenditure has mainly focused on developing religious tourism and business travel, but tourism officials have recently stepped up efforts to increase domestic tourism in the kingdom. The government faces a host of challenges in this area, including lack of tourism infrastructure and relatively high room rates compared to popular destinations such as Egypt or Malaysia. Saudi officials recognise that poor infrastructure is curbing their efforts to boost domestic tourism. The Saudi Commission for Tourism and Antiquities has acknowledged that while local tourism demand is on the rise, there is still a lack of proper services which meet „the aspirations and requirements of citizens‟. Another factor curbing domestic tourism in the kingdom is the simple fact that many Saudis are keener to travel outside the country to enjoy amenities such as cinemas and outdoor activities that they cannot get at home.

Kial Beac h, S audi Arabia.

set up a number of museums to showcase the country's cultural and archaeological history in a bid to lure more local tourists. The kingdom is home to several important historical sites such as the ruins of Al Hijr, which is the largest settlement of the Nabatean kingdom after Petra. So far, the kingdom's efforts appear to be working with a domestic tourism surged of 27% in the summer of 2011 compared to the same period in 2010. However, another key reason why domestic tourism is on the rise in the kingdom has been the unrest in the region. "The Saudi market to a great extent turned internally this year," says Toufic Tamim, VP Sales & Marketing, Movenpick Hotels & Resorts, Middle East. "Our resorts in Jeddah and Al Qassim saw a tremendous increase in business, and at Al Khobar we've seen a 25% increase in RevPAR from 2010 to 2011, mainly because the Saudis who normally travel to Bahrain this year decided to stay in the Khobar area." Last week Movenpick opened a second resort in Al Khobar, which will offer 36 3-bedroom villas catering mostly to Saudi families. Tamim says the family market in the kingdom is 'huge', as 'every family' will take at least 2 vacations a year, with one of the trips being within country. www. t ourism aroundtheworl d.c o. uk

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Delma Isl and, UAE

Middle East & North Africa News

ABU DHABI 2011 A RECORD YEAR FOR HOTEL GUESTS Abu Dhabi has

recorded its most successful year ever in terms of hotel guest arrivals with some 2,111,611 people staying in the emirate's hotels and hotel apartments - beating its 2011 stretch target of 2 million by 6.5% or over 100,000 guests. Annual growth was recorded across guest nights, which were up 22% to 6.3 million; occupancy levels which rose 7% to 69%; revenue, which rose 3% to Dhs4.375bn ($1.2bn) and length of stay which expanded 5% to 2.97 nights. The increases attributed to a number of factors; the opening of offices in Russia and the USA, and focusing on the Asian markets, a vibrant calendar of world-class events, increased air access with the arrival into Abu Dhabi of new carriers and the expansion of air routes network and a substantial increase in cross-network marketing undertaken by the arrival of major new hospitality brands. Domestic tourism accounted for 39% of overall 2011 arrivals with the GCC, including the UAE making up 45% of hotel guests. Non-GCC Arab countries accounted for 11%, Asia 14% and Europe 18%. Saudi Arabia performed particularly well for with guest numbers climbing by 58% to 60,991 making the Kingdom the 6th largest international source market. Kuwait has also demonstrated huge potential with numbers from the state increasing by 36% to 15,898, Qatar increasing by 11% to 22,898 and Oman growing by 10% to 25,088. Asia's growth was particularly influenced by increased in arrivals from India, which rose by 30% to 108,170 guests and is now the emirate's 2nd largest international source market, and China, which was up 15% to 16,795. Abu Dhabi will continue to focus heavily on these emerging markets with a 4-city travel trade road show in India. Russia also performed well, with guest arrivals up 44% on the year to 13,989. Europe's growth rate was primarily influenced by: the UK, which remains Abu Dhabi's biggest international source market accounting for 139,319 - an increase of 18%: Germany, where arrivals rose 25% to 68,077; France, where the market grew 15% to 42,682 and Italy, which saw a 13% growth to 31,769.

service are always a winning combination, and one that is the USP of the Coral Beach Resort-Sharjah. The hotel also recorded an EU€620,000, (UK£516,000) increase in revenue in rooms compared to 2010, while the average room rate rose 10% over the previous year. In addition, the Coral Beach Resort was acknowledged for its excellence in standards by government authorities with a Recognition Award from the Ministry of Justice and a further Recognition Award presented by the Ministry of Labour on the occasion of the UAE 40th National Day in December. The Coral Beach Resort – Sharjah is located on one of the emirate‟s principal sand beaches and features 156 spacious rooms as well as a range of leisure activities for all ages, including children‟s pool, indoor playroom and complimentary Kid‟s Club as well as tennis, badminton, volleyball and two outdoor swimming pools.

ROCCO FORTE HOTELS MAKES MIDDLE EASTERN DEBUT IN ABU DHABI Situated close to Al Bateen private jet airport and a 15-minute drive from Abu Dhabi International Airport, the Rocco Forte Hotel Abu Dhabi will cater to all types of traveller. The property offers 7 food and beverage outlets including Blue Bar, a suspended, glassencased bar with views to the Grand Mosque and overlooking the private jet runway, and the art deco-style Italian restaurant Oro, with an elegant central bar and private dining room. The 2,000sq.m state-of-the-art spa features 15 private treatment rooms and separate men‟s and women‟s indoor pools, and the fitness centre includes separate yoga and Pilates studios. A 25m outdoor pool has a separate child‟s pool area, and Noche, a South American poolside bar. The 281 rooms and suites are a contemporary blend of European and Middle Eastern styles that achieves a warm and inviting atmosphere, with special extra touches like flat-screen TVs over the bathtubs. The 235sq.m Royal Suite contains a walk-in wardrobe, 2 private terraces, bar, dining/meeting room and library/study. The Rocco Forte Hotel Abu Dhabi is the 14th property to join the Rocco Forte Hotels group, which has a strong presence in Europe. The next 4 Rocco Forte hotels will expand the brand‟s presence in the Middle East/Africa region, with properties opening in Jeddah (2013), Cairo (2014), Luxor (2014) and Marrakech (2014). ■

CORAL BEACH RESORT - SHARJAH ENJOYS SOARING SUCCESS IN 2011 By the end of 2011 the Coral Beach Resort, Sharjah reported an average occupancy of 85% throughout the year. While uncertainty about the global economy remains, the hotel was delighted to report that in Sharjah, the good times were back with both leisure and tourist visitors continuing to flock to the emirate. Competitive rates plus a quality product and

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The House Of P arli ament, Berli n, Germ any.

Germany News

CHINESE POISED TO TAKE GERMAN TOURISM CROWN

Germans are world champions of travel, spending more than EU€60, (UK£50) billion on trips abroad in 2011, but the Chinese could soon overtake them. The amount Germans spend on travel is expected to increase in 2012, possibly to a new record of EU€62, (UK£51) billion. Even the debt problems in the euro-zone have not, up to now prevented the Germans from travelling mainly due to continued high employment numbers and wages. The news is also good for German businesses, which have increased travel budgets to about EU€9, (UK£7.5) billion for their employees after several years of cutbacks. Worries about the debt crisis, new burdens on taxpayers or long-term inflation could prompt Germans to not travel at all or take their holidays domestically - with Germany remaining their favoured destination. With an ever weakening euro Germany is becoming a more attractive destination for foreigners - it is already the 8th most popular in the world. Tourists spent more money in Germany in 2011 than the year before approximately EU€27.4, (UK£23) billion, an increase of 5%. Most tourists came from European countries, although an increasing number have been coming from rising Asian powers like China. As the Chinese economy gains strength, its people travel the world and become known for their tourist dollars.

HEALTH MEGATREND A BOOM FOR DESTINATION GERMANY The health megatrend - a product of demographic change, changing lifestyles and a new focus on health - looks set to generate unprecedented demand for travel to Germany in the coming decades. This trend has been seen following an online survey carried out by the German National Tourist Board (GNTB), in which 300 or so travel experts from 12 different countries were asked to give their views. Nearly 40% of them predicted that the volume of health oriented travel will rise over the next 20 years. It is expected that nature and medical tourism will be the major growth areas for the travel industry up to 2015, with annual increases of 6.8% and 5.5% respectively. In Germany, the number of purely health-motivated trips more than doubled between 2009 and 2010. 341,000 Europeans visited Germany exclusively for health reasons in 2010 compared to 157,000 in 2009.

theme „Wine heritage and nature – fine wine and good times‟ will be promoted internationally to inspire wine lovers who appreciate culture and natural scenery to take a holiday in Germany‟s wine regions. For the UK & Ireland the promotion kicked off with the visit of Germany‟s wine princess, Elisabeth Born from the wine region Sale-Unstrut, who introduced the theme at the Vinopolis in London during WTM last year. “The event was a great success and sparked a lot of interest within the travel trade. The response we have had so far is extremely positive, and we are very excited to be promoting such a wonderful and underestimated side of Germany,” says Klaus Lohmann, director of the GNTO UK & Ireland. Germany‟s 13 wine-growing regions, being the Ahr, Baden, Franconia, Hessische Bergstrasse, Middle Rhine, Moselle, Nahe, Palatinate, Rheingau, Rheinhessen, Saale-Unstrut, Saxony and Württemberg, host over 1,000 wine festivals. A calendar of wine-themed events lists highlights throughout the year, such as the winery open day in Saxony and the Stuttgart Wine Festival in August, where festival-goers can sample more than 500 different varieties www.weinkulturkalender.de. For active holidaymakers a walk, cycle ride or canoe trip through one of the winegrowing regions is a wonderful way to explore the landscapes, which have been shaped by a tradition of wine-making. The Rheinsteig trail, for example, runs for 320kms from Wiesbaden to Bonn and passes historical castles, rocky crags, vineyards and „via ferrata‟ routes, whereas the Moselle Cycle Route follows the Moselle River through ever-changing vineyard scenery. Accommodation can be found in charming hotels situated in picturesque wine villages. In many, a stay will revolve around wine, and guests will learn fascinating facts about the history of viniculture in Germany, which goes back 2,000 years. Germany‟s vineyards produce wines of international acclaim. Apart from the popular Rieslings, other fine varieties such as Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, Pinot Blanc, Dornfelder and Silvaner flourish here. These can be sampled in modern Vinotheques and wine cellars. ■

global news for tourism, m.i.c.e & exhibitions

WINE HERITAGE AND NATURE IN GERMANY - THE GNTB THEME FOR 2012 Wine will be a key focus for the German National Tourist Board (GNTB) in 2012. In collaboration with the German Wine Institute (DWI), the

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by Dimitri Laspas, publisher

EL SALVADOR… A Destination For Success

Lak e Coatepeque, San Sal vador, El Salvador.

Located in South America and on the Equator there is a lot going for El Salvador. Its tourism industry is booming with the sector accounting for 4.6% of GDP in 2011, compared to just 0.4% a decade ago. To put that growth into perspective, worldwide, tourism grew by 4.5% in 2011. The country sees 1.27 million tourists come to explore the magic on offer across the country. From 1996 to now, tourism revenue has grown by 35.9% from EU€482, (UK£400) million to EU€655, (UK£545) million. El Salvador's tourism opportunities are quite different than those on offer in other Central American countries. Its beaches and nightlife are great as is its surfing opportunities at places not yet overcrowded like El Zonte, Sunzal, and La Libertad. Surprisingly, due to its geographical size and urbanisation, combined with the use of the US dollar as the local currency and with good flight connections, El Salvador is a hot tourist spot. It is a modern place with a number of shopping malls, stores and restaurants, yet it still retains its Salvadorian culture.

the fair distribution of wealth among the Salvadorian population. It hopes to see annual growth of 8% in the period 2007-2014 and for tourism to represent 6% of the nations GDP. In addition, it aims to achieve an average daily expense of EU€106, (UK£88) per tourist. This would place El Salvador as one of the primary tourist destinations in Central America. At present it still attracts quite a niche market which is mainly centred on the capital, San Salvador, but the rest of the country has much to offer.

The National Pal ace, San Salv ador, El S alvador

The Cathedral of Chala t enango, El Salvador

40% of El Salvador visitors want to enjoy the sun and the country's beautiful beaches; 38% of El Salvador visitors enjoy the colonial structures and the country's history; and 22% enjoy the nature and El Salvador mountains and volcanoes. The government is working hard to further expand the tourism industry and into a wider tourist base attracting more tourists from Europe and beyond. Until now most have been from the Americas. It is by nature an ecofriendly destination and is one of the safest Central American destinations. The governments „National Plan of Tourism 2014‟ gives the objective to achieve 2 million tourists by ensuring the sustainability of the tourist development of El Salvador by watching the impact on the economic and social performance generated by tourist activity as well as its contribution to national wealth, of the employment and of

One sector El Salvador could significantly develop is cruise tourism, which has high potential. However the investment would be huge, but the fundamental framework is there. It is also a new and steadily growing M.I.C.E destination with many unique opportunities with volcanoes, high altitudes and lakes and traditional Salvadorian culture. El Salvador is doing its best to put the country back into the tourism map as a diversified destination that is offers nature, sea, sand, surf, cultural, leisure tourism, business tourism, cruising and a growing M.I.C.E. destination. It has made huge efforts to turn the page of its past and focus on its future by promising to become one of the most attractive destinations in Central America. The country is inspiring and magical, the people are so genuinely kind and open and the infrastructure to attract more leisure and business tourism is on the rise with huge support from the public and private sector. It is a destination open to all types of investments and ready to welcome visitors from the region, Europe, Asia and the Middle East. ■

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BML International-UK a marketing & representation company in tourism, m.i.c.e and exhibitions.

www.bmlinternational.co.uk

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February 2012 edition