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Thailand expands luxury MICE offering

Thailand expands luxury MICE offering

The Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau (TCEB) has launched a new ‘Luxury MICE’ initiative, which is designed for a niche market.

In this plan for market penetration, TCEB hopes to expand its luxury presence with five splendid ‘chic & charming’ destinations - comprising of Bangkok, Hua Hin, Chiang Mai, Phuket and Samui.

Each promises to provide a truly captivating experience, high standards and unspoiled natural landscapes.

Beginning with the European market, the Bureau is confident that the initiative will add 15-20 per cent to Thailand’s MICE industry with the ‘Luxury MICE’ segment projected to contribute around £80 million this year.

Thailand’s Meetings & Incentives industry has offered endless possibilities and inspired the success for both business and leisure for a long time.

In 2011, the country turned another page in its service history by lifting its status and moving into the luxury destinations category.

This shift was due to the change of the global trends; in 2011, the global meetings industry will see a gradual shift to high-end meetings.

Thailand is in the position to offer luxurious destinations and services for a reasonable and competitive price.

Speaking at the Believe in Thailand: London Road Show, TCEB president, Akapol Sorasuchart, revealed: “The change of the business traveller’s behaviour drives our business.

“Thailand will always inspire and provide a unique experience for all kinds of business events. Apart from the successive ROI of every meeting and event, the business travellers will also seek more inspiration and expect more.

“This is the reason to present and market the “Luxury MICE” initiative to the global market, focusing first on the European market.”

Thailand has chosen five destinations in the country which traditionally have been popular meetings and incentives destinations and are well equipped to meet the needs of meetings participants and the industry.

The five destinations have also been singled out because of their exclusive accommodation facilities, high-standard international facilities, unspoiled natural landscapes and luxury culinary delights.

“In terms of the number, the luxury Meetings market grown continuously in Thailand over the past few years after the global economic recession,” added Akapol.

“The visitors, especially from the long-haul markets, come in smaller groups for their meetings and incentives events but with more exclusivity and higher expectations.

According to the statistic report, the Meetings and Incentives industries have the biggest share in Thailand’s MICE industry, accounting for 41 per cent.

Last year, Thailand welcomed around 79,797 European MICE visitors; Europe has long been one of the major markets for the Thai MICE industry.

With the expectation of the 720,000 MICE visitor arrivals to Thailand in 2011, a total of 100,800 visitors are expected to be from Europe; a market share of 15 per cent and an increase of 26 per cent from 2010.

World Travel Awards

Such success has not gone unnoticed, with several major events scheduled to arrive in Thailand later this year.

In late September, World Travel Awards will host its Asia & Australasia Gala Ceremony at the luxurious Dusit Thani Bangkok.

Industry leaders from across the continent will be on hand to see who has been selected as the best-of-the-best by hundreds of thousands of thousands of voters from around the world.

The event will run parallel with WSDE Sport Tourism Expo, the only global B-2-B exhibition dedicated to showcasing the booming $600 billion a year sports tourism market - the most rapidly growing sector in travel and tourism.

WSDE presents a much needed annual opportunity for the sport tourism industry to come together, not only to conduct lucrative future business deals and source new contacts and markets, but also to gain invaluable insights from the advanced knowledge of market leaders.

WSDE is a vital event for those wishing to be part of the future of travel.