India to host World Travel Awards in Asia

The World Travel Awards (WTA) have announced that their first ever Asia, Australasia & Indian Ocean Awards Ceremony will be hosted at The Leela Palace Kempinski Bangalore in India on 2 November 2007.The Leela Palace Kempinski - renowned for its magnificent design - stands amidst nine acres of lush green gardens and a sparkling azure lagoon in the city of Bangalore. The fa├žade of this majestic, six-storey hotel, with its high arches and gold leaf domes, is a good indication of the splendour that lies within.

“The Leela Palace is recognized in the industry as a distinguished market leader in India in the past few years. Located in one of the rapidly progressive cities gaining distinction in the world today, the opulent Leela Palace is designed on the lines of the Mysore Palace”, says Kenneth Hill, Director Sales & Marketing for International Market, The Leela Palace.  “It is situated in the ‘Garden City’ Bangalore, as a resort oasis. Rich, royal and regal, encapsulating the Indian culture with a contemporary touch, there is no other venue like The Leela Palace Bangalore to host the first ever Asia, Australasia & India Ocean Awards Ceremony which embodies the ‘Essence of India’.”

Bangalore, the capital of the Indian state of Karnataka, is situated halfway between the coasts in Southern India. The city has an estimated population of 6.5 million and is India’s fastest growing city. It is said to be one of the most hip and happening cities in India as well as a major centre of the IT industry. Airlines including Lufthansa, Singapore Airlines, Malaysian Airlines, British Airways, Emirates and Air France fly direct routes to Bangalore from many major European and Asian destinations, making the destination easily accessible for international visitors.

Manon Han, Vice President of the World Travel Awards, commented: “We are delighted to bring the World Travel Awards event to India, one of the most exciting emerging markets in the world. India’s tourism industry is thriving; last year it registered a growth rate of 17.3% in foreign tourist arrivals - the highest in the past ten years. Bangalore as a gateway to India and one of the country’s hubs is certainly an ideal place for our inaugural Asia, Australasia & Indian Ocean Awards Ceremony. Moreover, the grandeur of The Leela Palace Kempinski Bangalore creates a perfect setting for WTA’s high-profile event.”

From Cambodia to China, from India to Samoa, from Madagascar to the Seychelles, WTA’s voters have 266 categories and 1,739 nominations to choose from in the regions Asia, Australasia and Indian Ocean - 9 categories and 64 nominations in India.

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WTA’s Asia, Australasia & Indian Ocean Awards Ceremony was originally booked to take place on 6 September in Bangkok, Thailand, but a number of factors had influenced this move, critically the tourism interest focused in India.

For the first time in 2007, the World Travel Awards cover the various country and regional level awards by recognising award winners in their own territory. The inaugural ceremony in Abu Dhabi in May was a phenomenal success. Other chosen locations for this year’s world tour include New York in the USA, Newcastle Gateshead in North East England, and the Turks & Caicos Islands in the Caribbean for the grand final.
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