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MMPRC exhibits Maldives as partner country of OTM Mumbai

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Maldives Marketing and Public Relations Corporation (MMPRC/Visit Maldives) has initiated exhibiting the Maldives at the biggest travel trade event held in India, OTM Mumbai, as the partner country, to further strengthen the Maldives’ brand visibility in this market. The fair is being held in Mumbai, India, from the 14th to 16th of March 2022, at the Bombay Exhibition Center.

OTM, also referred to as the gateway to India’s largest travel market, is one of the largest international gatherings of travel trade buyers and professionals in India. This event provides the opportunity for the international travel trade to meet tourism professionals and build long-term business relations from around the world. This year’s OTM event will see over 1,100 exhibitors from 55 countries, with visitor figures estimated to reach over 30,000 during the three days of the event.

The Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of MMPRC, Mr Thoyyib Mohamed, participated in a panel discussion held on the sidelines of OTM under the title “The Importance of India-Outbound in the Post Pandemic Market Recovery”.

Speaking at this panel discussion, Thoyyib addressed the current position of the market and the ongoing efforts by MMPRC and industry stakeholders to maintain the Maldives as one of the most preferred destinations among Indians. MMPRC was also conferred an award by One Above Agency, one of the leading travel agencies of India, in recognition for the work done by the corporation in the Indian market. The award was titled “FRIEND OF INDIAN OUTBOUND TRAVEL FRATERNITY”.

Additionally, Mr Thoyyib is also scheduled to attend “ Maldives Tourism Investment and Connectivity Forum” networking event held by the Ministry of Tourism of Maldives on 15th March.

Under our efforts to enhance the destination presence during OTM, Maldives will be exhibited as the partner country during the three day fair. As the partner country, Maldives is entitled to visibility on both offline and online components. As such Maldives will be promoted as a preferred holiday destination for Indians by highlighting tourism products and segments and experiences at strategic locations of the venue. Further to this our participation was communicated to over 50,000 agents in the organisers database through official presses and emailers.

The Maldives will be represented by MMPRC at a designated stand at OTM 2022, along with 18 co-exhibitors. The main purpose of participating in this event is to promote the Maldives as a safe haven for travellers and to update the Indian travel trade with the latest information and travel guidelines from the destination. Throughout the event, MMPRC will showcase the geographical advantages of the scattered islands of the Maldives, allowing natural social distancing, and making our nation one of the safest destinations for tourists. Our products, including resorts, hotels, guesthouses/homestays and liveaboards, will also be marketed through this event.

India was the top source market to the Maldives, in the past two years. The market has contributed to the overall recovery of our tourism sector during the past two years. As part of our marketing strategy for the India market, participation in OTM will efficiently promote various segments of tourism to travel trade professionals. This strategy aims to assist the destination to increase future bookings and arrival figures from India.

India was the largest market in 2021 with over 278,740 travellers and a market share of 22.6%. Similarly, India was the largest market in 2020 with an arrival figure of 62,960 and a market share of 11.3%. MMPRC has been participating in fairs and exhibitions and holding several activities for this market in order to maintain destination momentum and further increase arrivals from this market. This includes virtual and in-person activities such as major marketing campaigns with stakeholders, webinars, roadshows and familiarisation trips.

The world is currently on the trajectory to adapt to a broader new normal and ease covid measures across all sectors to recover from negative impact caused to economies due to covid restrictions. We are witnessing more countries easing travel measures and opening with a new normal.

With regards to the recent development across the world, Maldives has also eased travel restrictions imposed on tourists which enforced presenting of negative PCR tests by all travellers. In this regard, from 4th March 2022, tourists visiting Maldives are no longer required to present a Covid-19 PCR negative result upon arrival if the prescribed doses of vaccine are completed 14 days prior to date of arrival.

As of 13th March 2022, the Maldives has also lifted the national public health emergency, imposed in response to the emergence of the Covid-19 pandemic. The ease of travel restrictions and measures would make it easier for tourists to visit the Maldives.

MMPRC carried out 260 different marketing activities in 22 global markets last year, including fairs, roadshows, familiarisation trips, marketing campaigns, webinars, and interviews. The greatest testament to the success of these activities came late last year, as the Maldives secured the title of ‘World’s Leading Destination’ (among several other accolades) at the 2021 World Travel Awards, globally recognised as the hallmark of industry excellence. This is the second consecutive year that the Maldives had successfully earned this prestigious title, a shining testimony of the trust placed in the ‘magic of Maldivian hospitality’ by travellers from all over the globe.

This year also celebrates an exceptional year to visit the Maldives – the Golden Jubilee celebration of tourism in the Maldives kicked off earlier last year with plans to conduct new and exciting activities throughout the year. MMPRC has planned over 60 in-person events for the year 2022, including 11 fairs, roadshows and events scheduled for just the first quarter.

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Pulse Hotels & Resorts unveils new residential project: The Coral Residences, Kandima

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Pulse Hotels & Resorts, one of the leading innovators in Maldives tourism, has introduced The Coral Residences, Kandima. Nestled on the northern end of the lush and green three-kilometre-long Kandima Integrated Island Resort in Dhaalu Atoll, this residential development is a first of its kind and promises to redefine luxury living in the Maldives.

Designed and crafted with meticulous attention to detail, The Coral Residences, Kandima, is a unique, integrated beachfront residential community with exceptional 5-star service, situated in the shimmering blue heart of the Maldives.

The Coral Residences comprises of 40 exquisitely designed two bedroom and three bedroom apartments. All apartments feature contemporary design and chic interiors, high-end finishes, state-of-the-art appliances, and unobstructed panoramic sea views across the Indian Ocean. Residence owners will enjoy exclusive access to a host of premium facilities, including a private beachfront pool, a gourmet restaurant and bar, dedicated fitness and recreation facilities and a 24-hour concierge service.

Buyers of The Coral Residences will be able to own their apartments under the new strata title ownership program. Owners’ apartments will be part a rental program, managed by Pulse Hotels & Resorts. Residents will have the access to the full range Kandima’s 5-star resort services, including its restaurants and bars, spa, recreation, and other amenities to complement their lifestyle. With its emphasis on comfort, convenience, and community, this development offers a truly elevated living experience.

“We are thrilled to introduce The Coral Residences, Kandima, to discerning local and international buyers,” said Sanjay Maniku, Managing Director of Pulse Hotels & Resorts. “With its unparalleled design and amenities, homeowners can take advantage of a limitless world of activities and experiences on offer at Kandima. We believe this development will set a new standard for luxury living in the Maldives, as well as bringing a new definition to the Maldives family vacation.”

The Coral Residences is realised by Pulse Hotels & Resorts, the creators behind The Nautilus Maldives, Kandima Maldives, and Nova Maldives. Known for their innovative hospitality concepts, Pulse Hotels & Resorts ensures that each property offers exceptional experiences and world-class service. The development has commenced and is expected to complete within Q3, 2025.

For more information, high-resolution images, and to schedule a private viewing, please contact Aishath Ihuma, Director of Business Development at +960 7788986 or aishath.ihuma@coralresidencesmaldives.com.

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Weixin Pay supported to boost Chinese tourists to Maldives

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On May 27, Zihuny Rasheed, Deputy Managing Director of Maldives Marketing and PR Corporation (MMPRC/Visit Maldives), and Etienne Ng, Weixin Pay’s Country Manager, Singapore and Regional Director, Southeast Asia, WeChat Pay, signed a three-year Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) during ITB China 2024, pledging to support more Maldivian merchants to accept WeixinPay to provide Chinese tourists with a convenient payment experience. Visit Maldives is the Official Destination Partner for this year’s edition of ITB China.

“China is a key source of tourists for the Maldives, and we greatly value the experience of Chinese visitors,” said DMD Zihuny Rasheed. “We plan on promoting the acceptance of Weixin Pay throughout the country, offering Chinese tourists the payment option they are familiar with and prefer. I have used Weixin Pay during my visit to China via linking an international card, and I can attest to the convenience of the mobile payment option.”

Ibrahim Faisal, Minister of Tourism of the Maldives, expressed his support, “Excited that we’re introducing Weixin Pay for Chinese visitors, which is another step in establishing Maldives as their top destination. Now, it’s easier than ever for Chinese travellers to enjoy their stay, hassle-free. We look forward to further enhancing their experience,” he wrote.

According to Etienne Ng, Weixin Pay is currently being piloted at the country’s airport duty-free store, as well as in popular restaurants like Sala Thai and City Garden. Additionally, a range of hotels and resorts are participating including, JEN Maldives Malé by Shangri-La, Adaaran Select HudhuranFushi, Adaaran Club Rannalhi, Adaaran Prestige Vadoo, Adaaran Prestige Water Villas, Velaa Private Island, Cheval Blanc Randheli Private Island, Dhawa Ihuru Maldives, Ayada Maldives, Marriott Bonvoy, Banyan Tree Vabbinfaru, Conrad Maldives Rangali Island and Angsana Velavaru in Maldives with strong support from the Bank of Maldives and local merchants. Making smooth progress, the initiative is expected to have 8,000 merchants nationwide that integrate the payment option.

“Weixin Pay is committed to providing users with safe and convenient payment services. Since the visa exemption policy was implemented, more and more Weixin Pay users have chosen to travel to the island country. Through our cooperation with Visit Maldives, we aim to provide Chinese users with the same convenient experience in the travel as they experience at home,” he said.

In February 2023, an Agreement on Mutual Exemption of Visa Requirements signed between the Maldives and China took effect as China expands its visa-free policy to benefit more countries. Consequently, the Maldives has consistently ranked among the top overseas destinations for Chinese tourists during popular travel periods such as the May Day and National Day holidays.

According to data from Visit Maldives, the country welcomed over 1.8 million tourists in 2023, a new national record. The Chinese market has been a key source market for the Maldives. As of 11th May 2024, it is the number one source market with 91,073 tourist arrivals.

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Indian influencer Niki Mehra in Maldives

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Maldives Marketing and Public Relations Corporation (MMPRC/ Visit Maldives) hosted a familiarisation trip with Amilla Maldives for high-end influencer, Niki Mehra, from India to experience the luxury and romantic offerings of the Maldives from 3rd – 6th May 2024.

The familiarisation trip was a great opportunity to Niki Mehra, a renowned Indian model, fashion, beauty and travel content creator and social media influencer with over half a million followers who has carved a niche in the Indian fashion industry with her unique sense of style. During her time in the Sunny Side of Life, Niki Mehra showcased luxury to romantic experiences of the destination.

The trip promoted Maldives through social media platforms of Niki Mehra while highlighting experiential itinerary offerings of the Maldives. Additionally, the influencer trip assisted MMPRC in propelling growth in the luxury travel segment and honeymoon market by showcasing the Maldives as a premier honeymoon destination for the Indian travellers.

The Indian market has been a strong market for the Maldives over the years, currently ranked number 6 with 46,970 tourists as of 13th May 2024. Additionally, MMPRC showcased the Maldives in OTM and SATTE held earlier this year. MMPRC is committed to boosting the arrivals from the market and has exciting marketing activities planned for future, including joint campaigns, familiarisation trips, participation in major events and other campaigns which provides numerous opportunities to showcase the breathtaking Maldives to the market, attracting more Indian travellers.

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