Shangri-La introduces new service initiative for Chinese travellers
Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts has introduced a new service initiative for outbound guests from mainland China; Xiang Ju.
In a statement, Shangri-La said the the programme, which features seven signature services and bespoke local experiences for Chinese guests, will first launch on 1 August at Island Shangri-La, Hong Kong. By the end of the year, Xiang Ju will be expanded to all Shangri-La branded hotels and resorts based outside of mainland China, totalling 41 properties in 35 destinations including London, Tokyo, Sydney and the Maldives.
“Centred on Shangri-La’s hallmark ‘hospitality from the heart’ and built on the company’s extensive experience of operating in China for over 30 years, Xiang Ju, or get together at Shangri-La, ensures Chinese guests have meaningful experiences away from home and feel comfortable in their surroundings abroad,” the statement read.
The new programme’s seven services include:
- WeChat Assistant: Upon confirmation of a hotel booking, guests will be given a QR code to scan and connect with the hotel’s special China Guest Action Team on WeChat for instant communication, regardless of time and location.
- The Bespoke Experience: Guests will be offered the services of a Mandarin Chinese-speaking guide to explore a destination and its local culture.
- We Speak Chinese: Mandarin Chinese-speaking staff will be on hand at the host hotel to assist with guest queries and small details.
- Please Be Informed: Important hotel information printed in Chinese, which includes safety procedures, food and beverage services, floor plans and an emergency contact, will be provided upon check-in and will also be available electronically via a QR code.
- Tea Service: The hotels will provide a variety of Chinese teas allowing guests to enjoy their preferred drink away from home.
- Your Food – The Seven Wonders: Seven different types of Chinese congee, originating from different regions in China, will be available for breakfast.
- A Taste of Home: Chinese comfort food, namely noodles and congee, will be available to order from the hotel’s in-room dining menu for late-night snacking.
“Shangri-La is well recognised for its distinctive Asian hospitality from the heart. Currently, we have over 95 hotels around the globe, with nearly half of them located in China. Being an Asian hotel brand with over 30 years’ experience in China, we have a deep understanding of Chinese guests needs. We want our guests to take away memorable and rich experiences when staying with us abroad while enjoying the cultural comforts from home,” Sarah Chen, Shangri-La’s Vice President of Sales and Marketing, was quoted in the statement as saying.
According to Shangri-La, to introduce the Xiang Ju programme, 11 Shangri-La hotels and resorts from Hong Kong, Paris, London, Tokyo, Sydney, Vancouver, Toronto, Boracay, the Maldives, Mauritius and Oman presented their hotels and services to Beijing and Shanghai audiences at China World Summit Wing, Beijing on May 22 and at Jing An Shangri-La, East Shanghai on May 24.
Hong Kong-based Shangri-La International Hotel Management Limited, one of the world’s premier hotel management companies, currently operates over 95 hotels in 22 countries and 73 destinations under the Shangri-La, Kerry, Hotel Jen and Traders brands.
In the Maldives, Shangri-La runs the Shangri-La’s Villingili Resort and Spa in the southernmost Addu atoll and the Hotel Jen in capital Male.
Shangri-La’s Villingili Resort and Spa is located just a five-minute boat ride away from Gan International Airport, which has direct connections to neighbouring Sri Lanka as well. The luxury resort is a collection of 132 private villas nestled across emerald green jungle and stunning turquoise shoreline.
China has maintained its position as the single biggest source market despite falling numbers over the past year. In 2016, the Maldives welcomed 324,326 visitors from China, which was a 9.8 percent drop compared to the previous year. However, the Maldives recently announced plans to step up marketing in China in order to increase the number of Chinese tourists to one million per year.
Maldives China Tourism Association announces first roadshow in China to boost tourism
The Maldives China Tourism Association (MVCTA), a non-governmental and non-profit organization dedicated to promoting tourism in the Maldives to the Chinese market, has announced its upcoming roadshow in China. Founded in 2023 and registered in the Maldives, the MVCTA aims to provide information about the Maldives as a destination to the Chinese public and strengthen ties between the travel industries of China and the Maldives.
The MVCTA’s efforts include participating in regional travel exhibitions and roadshows, advertising and promotions, organizing familiarization trips for the travel trade and media, and maintaining contacts with government tourism bodies, travel agencies, and associations in China. By working together with various stakeholders, the association strives to advance the Maldives’ travel and tourism industry and enhance the country’s tourism image in the Chinese market.
To further their promotional activities, the MVCTA is pleased to announce its first roadshow in China, scheduled to take place in September 2023. The roadshow will span four cities, namely Shanghai, Shenzhen, Chengdu, and Beijing, from the 15th to the 21st of September. This significant event aims to showcase the unique attractions and experiences the Maldives has to offer to Chinese travelers.
The MVCTA’s roadshow in China presents an excellent opportunity for Chinese travelers to discover the allure of this tropical paradise. As the association embarks on its inaugural roadshow, it anticipates a successful event that will contribute to the growth and development of tourism between China and the Maldives.
Following the resumption of outbound travel from China in January 2023, the Maldives has seen a significant resurgence in Chinese tourist arrivals. Prior to the global impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, China held the top position as the leading inbound market for the Maldives. Although currently ranked as the sixth largest source market, Chinese arrivals have already accounted for 5.8% of the total tourist influx to the Maldives, with an impressive 48,668 Chinese tourists visiting by June 6th, 2023. These figures are expected to surge further in the coming years, as China’s appetite for international travel continues to grow, cementing its crucial role in the Maldives’ thriving tourism industry.
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TTM Travel Summit 2023 unveils exciting new concept with interactive, engaging workshops
Travel Trade Maldives (TTM) has introduce an elevated concept for the highly anticipated TTM Travel Summit 2023. Building upon 6 years of success, this year’s summit promises an immersive and engaging experience, focusing on interactive brainstorming sessions and workshops that will shape the industry’s future.
TTM Travel Summit 2023 boasts a dynamic lineup of sessions and workshops designed to encourage active participation from industry stakeholders. With keynote presentations by industry experts and collaborative brainstorming sessions, the summit will explore crucial topics essential for advancing the tourism sector in the Maldives.
Attendees can anticipate thought-provoking discussions on the future of aviation in the Maldives, exploring emerging trends and challenges that will significantly impact the travel industry. The evolving role of travel agents in the digital era will also take centre stage, emphasising the importance of adapting to changing landscapes and embracing new strategies.
Another significant focus of the summit will be marketing the Maldives to new markets, with experts sharing insights on diversifying tourism products. Furthermore, participants will gain valuable knowledge on media and content strategies for effective tourism promotion, unravelling the secrets behind captivating travel stories and engaging content.
TTM Travel Summit is an exclusive invitation-only event that brings together thought leaders, industry shapers, and senior decision-makers professionally engaged with Maldives tourism. By fostering collaboration and knowledge exchange, the summit aims to propel the industry forward and pave the way for a thriving future in travel.
Registration for the TTM Travel Summit will be open from 1st July onwards, and industry professionals are encouraged to secure their spot early to be part of this groundbreaking experience.
Taking place from August 22nd to 24th, 2023, TTM Maldives 2023 will feature TTM Connect Meetings during the first two days at Meeruma Conference Facility, followed by the TTM Travel Summit and the prestigious TTM Awards & Gala Night on the final day at CROSSROADS Maldives.
Visit Maldives collaborates with SQ to showcase Maldives with familiarisation trip for Chinese market
Maldives Marketing and Public Relations Corporation (MMPRC/ Visit Maldives) concludes a familiarisation trip in collaboration with Singapore Airlines (SQ). The trip was held from 29th May to 4th June 2023. This familiarisation trip provided participants from the Chinese market with an immersive experience of the world-class Maldivian hospitality, focusing on affordable luxury and sustainability in the Sunny Side of Life.
The familiarisation trip commenced 31st May 2023, following the Visit Maldives Storytellers’ Conference 2023. It featured representatives from various publications and social media platforms, with a specific focus on the mass market. This trip generated extensive coverage that highlighted the unique geographical features of the Maldives and its one-island-one-resort concept, along with the exceptional experiences that have made the Maldives one of the world’s most sought-after holiday destinations.
With a estimated combined reach of 1,270,000, leading publications and platforms such as Travel+Leisure, City Traveller, Conde Nast Traveller 悦游, Voyage 新旅行, and 公众号:飞客 Flyer Tea provided coverage that reached a wide audience. During the trip, participants had the opportunity to engage with consumers on social media, share first-hand experiences of Maldivian hospitality through local life experiences, and promote the destination’s sustainability efforts. The trip showcased the range of unique experiences available in the Maldives, highlighting its position as a top destination and environmentally-friendly getaway. Through this trip, MMPRC aimed to not only reach a vast audience but also create a strong presence on various platforms and entice travellers to experience the unparalleled beauty and hospitality of the Maldives.
MMPRC aims to promote the Maldives as a safe and attractive destination for Chinese travellers through this activity. China has consistently been in the top 10 source markets for the Maldives in terms of arrivals pre-pandemic, and despite the challenges posed by the pandemic, the market is showing promising signs of recovery. In the first quarter of 2023, 17,691 Chinese tourists visited the Maldives, and the Maldives aims to leverage its presence on various platforms to gain a competitive advantage over other destinations.
This familiarisation trip with Singapore Airlines is part of a broader marketing strategy that includes ongoing PR activities, social media promotions, joint campaigns with leading travel agencies, and more. MMPRC is dedicated to enhancing destination presence in the Chinese market and capitalising on the growing interest in travel opportunities post-pandemic.
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