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A  special virtual sustainable event from C9 Hotelworks and Delivering Asia Communications will be held on  Thursday 9th July at 3:00 pm BKK / 4:00 pm Singapore.

Registration is free

While the present global crisis has effectively stopped travel in its tracks, one of the side effects has been the restoration of nature into many of Asia’s most popular destinations. While the reset has been a remarkable green shoot, the issue of sustainability needs to again become a key talking point for the travel, tourism and hotel sectors.

This virtual event is set to take a critical look at real life examples of positive outcomes in the face of adversity. From the hard decisions at Thailand’s Maya Bay, to creating hotel benchmarking; from the underwater view of a luxury resort nation to using green as a tourism attraction theme, the event topics are a fast-moving commentary of what is the best way forward for Asia in a post-crisis recovery climate.

The web event is also a prelude to the upcoming PHIST 2020 – A Virtual Event. PHIST stands for Phuket Hotels for Islands Sustaining Tourism and has over the past two years become the largest green hospitality event in Asia. This year, its set to evolve into an even larger platform for change.

Speakers

  • Dr Thon Thamrongnawasawat, Thailand’s leading marine biologist and the man instrumental in closing Thailand’s Maya Bay. Take a look at before, during and after in this ground-breaking initiative on how to restore nature into an area impacted by mass tourism.
  • Eric Ricaurte, CEO of environmental benchmarking and consulting group Greenview and PHIST (Phuket Hotels for Islands Sustaining Tourism) co-organiser. He will speak about the metrics and benchmarking sustainability in hotels.
  • Dirk De Cuyper, CEO S Hotels & Resorts Public Company Limited will give insight on the Maldives’   Marine Discovery Centre which has taken a natural history view and integrated the underwater history of the island nation in a unique initiative.
  • Matt Carlisle Operations Manager, XCO2. A leading global environmental consultancy will get back into the hotel box and take a deep dive into creating sustainable hotel rooms from the ground up as well as retro-fitting older properties.
  • Claudine Nagiah, Sustainability Director, Blue Tree Phuket on how they have built an eco-focused tourism attraction in one of Asia’s most popular resort destinations and dared to be different.
  • Bill Barnett, Managing Director of leading consulting group C9 Hotelworks and co-organizer of PHIST (Phuket Hotels for Islands Sustaining Tourism) takes an inside look at the upcoming Green Planet Learning Hub educational initiative for Thai school children and previews the September PHIST 2020 Virtual Event.

Moderator

  • David Johnson, CEO, Delivering Asia Communications Heads Asia’s leading hospitality PR company. Based in Bangkok, DACspecialises in strategic communications, media relations and digital marketing  across every Asian marketplace.

Registration

Chiang Mai Thailand is set to play home to a joint venture between James Noble’s Boutique Farmers and the Banyan Tree Group for the ORI9IN organic farm.

The set-up is on 141 hectares of land and will roll out in October of this year.

In an innovative space, the farming concept has rental areas for hotels and restaurants to growth their own unique products with a number of Bangkok Michelin-chefs onboard already.

A farm-themed attraction is in the works that includes a giant maze, farm experience and event space.

For more on Farm-To-Table and James Noble, see our recent virtual event on the evolving space.

Airline carrier NokScoot’s Board of Directors have passed a resolution to liquidate the joint venture company.

The primary reason cited is the economic climate of Covid-19 that has accelerated the airlines demise.

NokScoot is a joint venture between Singapore’s Scoot who are a subsidiary of Singapore Airlines and a Thai-listed group which includes shareholding by Thai Airways International.

It’s important to note the Nok Air, the Thai domestic carrier is continuing to fly local routes.

The mounting instability of the global aviation industry is set to hit tourism destinations hard.

One key example of this is Japan’s Hokkaido which had seem growing airlift from Thailand. As NokScoot now exit the Sapporo route and Thai Airways International have reported they will cease flying the route, the impact to that market in terms of seat capacity and connectivity is substantial.

For Phuket, there remains uncertainty with TG who indicated they might not reactivate flights to such key feeder markets of Stockholm, Vienna, Moscow, Milan and Rome. Come winter, it’s likely the ‘snowbird market’ will be using the Middle Eastern carriers to come to the island but again seat capacity will be severely diminished.

Looking at airlift, this week’s news that private equity firm Bain Capital was looking to bail out Virgin Australia is a storyline that is likely to be replayed with other key strategic airlines. That said, for Asia’s large stable of low-cost airlines, the reality is many of these will fall by the roadside in the coming year, given the prolonged sidelining of international travel.

A special virtual hotel and tourism event on Bali Tourism will take place on  Wednesday 24 June at  2:00pm Bangkok time.

To sign up for the free webinar register here.

Just say the name Bali and it resonates as one of the world’s most exotic and recognizable tourism destination brands anywhere in the world. There is only one Bali. Bali Tourism – The Way Back is a timely virtual event organized by Delivering Asia Communications and C9 Hotelworks together with Horwath HTL and the Bali Hotels Association (BHA).

Over the past few years, this important destination has experienced volatility in its travel and hotel sector, ranging from earthquakes to the present Covid-19 global pandemic. Today, as tourism plots a course to reopening and gradual recovery, this event will provide a unique take on both the impact of the crisis and how a tourism island can work though the current challenges.

Our speakers will do a deep dive into the Bali tourism market and provide an in-depth view from the perspective of hotel owners, operators and tourism organizations, with boarder market comparisons on how and where green shoots may occur.

This virtual event features key speakers from Bali and abroad. Topics will include:

  • Airlift: will travel bubbles create recovery of flights and from what markets?
  • Hotels: how are hotel owners and operators addressing the crisis and beyond?
  • Industry Organizations: destination marketing and now hotels are joining hands?
  • Finance: what is the best methodology to analyze how hotels should reopen and position?
  • China: what is the current sentiment towards travel to Bali in this all important source market?
  • Sustainability: is the crisis an opportunity to step back and say “less is better”?

There will be an open Question and Answer session as part of the event.

Speakers

  • Jesper Palmqvist, Area Director – Asia Pacific, STR
  • Emily Subrata, Director, Sudamala Resorts
  • Lucienne Anhar, Co-Owner and Managing Director, Tugu Hotels & Restaurants
  • Jean-Charles Le-Coz, Marketing Advisor, Bali Hotels Association
  • Mimi Hudoyo, Editor Indonesia, TTG Asia Media
  • Matt Gebbie, Director, Pacific Asia (Indonesia), Horwath HTL
  • Norbert Vas, Vice President – Business Development, Archipelago International
  • Bill Barnett, Managing Director, C9 Hotelworks
  • Vanessa Zhu, China Director, Delivering Asia Communications
  • Sean Nino, Founder, Mantra Bali

Moderator

  • David Johnson, CEO, Delivering Asia Communications

 

Register

Thailand’s domestic-led tourism recovery was at the forefront of a virtual online event “TTF2020 – Special Bangkok Edition” yesterday that tapped more than a 1,000 leading domestic and international travel and hotel industry participants.

Research from hospitality consulting group C9 Hotelworks and Delivering Asia Communications focused on domestic inter-Thailand visitor market whose size at more than 227 million in 2019 stole the limelight versus 39.8 million international visitors. This set the event stage for a compelling look into the pent-up demand of local travelers who are now being targeted by Thai hotels and tourism establishments.

In a series of random polls as part of C9 and Delivering Asia’s market insight held over the weekend in Bangkok, an assortment of Greater Bangkok residents that represent more than 15 million people in the expanded metropolitan area voiced a clear preference for less dense, more natural provincial destinations. Those most mentioned were the islands of Koh Chang and Koh Kood and mountain areas of Phetchabun, Nan, Pai and Mae Sot.

View the special event video edition of Greater Bangkok residents talking about Thai domestic travel click:

In a key segment of the event by global hotel intelligence group STR, which zeroed in on the country’s gateway capital, Area Director – Asia Pacific Jesper Palmqvist said “as Thailand’s economic engine, Bangkok will need to lead by example coming out of the crisis and promote and enable the domestic business that exists. In hotel metrics, this will change the definition of what are ‘acceptable performance levels’ are.”

As to what lays ahead for hotels Palmqvist added “forget about hitting 2019 levels again anytime soon and instead focus on recalibrating what acceptable hotel trading levels are. There is a case to be made for either economy and midscale or luxury properties to emerge more efficiently. Though the question remains, with tighter traveler belts on the horizon, which class of hotel will represent the fastest route to longer term recovery?”

Summing up the takeaway points of TTF2020 – Special Bangkok Edition, C9’s Managing Director Bill Barnett said “while international tourism remains a work in progress that is highly leveraged on bilateral cross-border agreements and restoration of airlift, the near-term goal of hotels is to attract cash flow. Expect Thailand to take to the road in considerably greater numbers for the remainder of 2020 and the industry will have to fish where the fish as part of the recovery journey ahead.”

An impressive line-up of speakers for the event, organized by C9 Hotelworks and the American Chamber of Commerce Thailand, included Centara Hotels and Resorts CEO Thirayuth Chirathivat and key senior executives from JLL, Horwath HTL, QUO, TSI, STR, Agoda, IHG, HotelIntel and Rosewood Bangkok.

To download the full-length event video and presentations, visit the following link.

Phuket International Airport has been allowed to open and is operational today.

Only regularly scheduled domestic flights are currently being allowed and non-scheduled international repatriation flights.

The first airline servicing the Phuket Bangkok route is Thai Vietjet who already have a once a day service and add a second daily flight on the 16th.

Nok Air will commence flights on the 16th and Thai AirAsia on the 18th, while Thai Lion is scheduled for the 19th.

Missing in action is Bangkok Airways and Thai Smile who currently have no flights listed and of course Thai Airways International. The latter is sidelined at the moment with no clarity if and when they will service Phuket anytime soon.

C9 Hotelworks and Delivering Asia Communications bring you Volume 4 of the Design Re-Invention series “Damn the Outlets. Re-Thinking Hotel Restaurants + Bars.”

The live virtual event will be held Tuesday 16th June, 2:00 pm Bangkok time, and you can register here.

While hotel design is all about scale, hierarchy and buffet lines, hotel owners and guests are revolting against vanilla cookie-cutter ignominious beasts that hoteldom call outlets. Did you ever wonder why hotels struggle to create unique food and beverage offerings?

In a post crisis travel world, hotels and freestanding restaurants and bars are on a competitive collision course.

This virtual event is a ‘think piece’ from the creative space of design, concept, operations and ideas that go beyond the all-day dining outlet or coffee shop. What opportunities are evolving as a fallout from the pandemic and should repositioning, renovation and change be the new mantra? Prepare to talk bold new thinking as we crawl out of the box and into the fire. If you are happy eating club sandwiches on utilitarian white porcelain plates, this is not the event for you. If you dare to be different, please register now.

Our line-up of design mavens, creative souls and restaurant + bar entrepreneurs are:

 

Speakers

 

Jason Williams, Creative Director, Proof and Company
He has worked on iconic curated bar offerings including Singapore’s Manhattan Bar, Atlas, 28 Hongkong Street, Junior “The Pocket Bar” and is co-creator of Widges Gin.

Phillip Pond, Founder, Atelier Pond Bangkok
Phillip was formerly Chief Creative Officer for AvroKo in New York and worked at Yabu Pushelberg. His award-winning designs include Publico and Bar Marcello Singapore, and 1 Hotel Central Park.

Rohit Sachdev, Founder and CEO, Soho Hospitality
His notable concepts include leading Bangkok venues such as Havana Social, Above  Eleven, Charcoal and Cantina Italian Kitchen.

Max Dautresme, Founding Partner and Creative Director, A Work Of Substance
He leads a multidisciplinary design studio that has created a number of leading projects including the redesign of The Fleming Hotel in Hong Kong.

Trevor MacKenzie, Managing Director and Partner, Exquisine
Trevor leads two Thai brands Mango Tree and Cocoa that have established a broad global footprint and is a leading proponent of restaurant entrepreneurship.

Bill Barnett, Managing Director, C9 Hotelworks
One of the most authoritative voices in the hospitality and leisure real estate sectors in Asia Pacific.

 

Moderator

 

David Johnson, CEO, Delivering Asia Communications
Heads Asia’s leading hospitality PR company. Based in Bangkok, DAC specialises in  strategic communications, media relations and digital marketing across every Asian marketplace.

Register now

Phuket will see beaches reopen on this coming Tuesday 9th June.

The move has been approved by the Phuket provincial government and marks a step in the right direction for the tourist economy.

At the same time, the Phuket International Airport remains closed until 15th June, with scheduled flights from Bangkok showing from 16th June forward.

For now, baby steps are continuing forward but there is movement afoot.

My Saturday is something of a case of man interrupted.  So many questions but sadly so few answers. Despite a growing tinge of optimism over the green shoots of Thailand’s baby steps towards reopening travel, what keeps me awake at night are nagging thoughts about airlift.

I’ve often said, “you can’t stay there if you can’t get there.” Airlift after all continues to be a top shelf polestar for tourism. Please bear with me for a moment as I set the stage.

I’m often asked by people across Asia what is the secret of Thailand’s tourism magic numbers?

Food, hospitality, beaches, brand?  My answer is often centered on the theory of location. Thailand is blessed to be both a destination and is an international, regional and domestic aviation hub. It also sits within 6-8 hours flying time of half the world’s population.

As we slowly but steadily start to emerge from the dark shadows of Covid-19, the world of travel has become an altered state. Asia’s fifteen-year massive surge in low-cost airline growth (LCC) has come to an end. There is a knock at the door and it’s called reality for this starts ups who have thrived in a ecosphere of sustained growth.

The current conundrum for Thailand’s is in effect the veritable ‘double whammy’ of cash strapped LCC’s but also the fragile nature of its national flag carrier Thai Airways International.

For all the complaints about Thai, it’s positive impact for tourism to Phuket and throughout the country is enormous.

Staring into the uncertainty of post-crisis airlift, from an island perspective the replacement of having Thai Smile  take over  the  service of  domestic routes in smaller aircraft, and lacking suitable business class or any first class seats is a negative for upscale travelers.

Tack onto the larger issue of Thai shrinking their international routes and the trickle impact in less available seats in the next few years is somewhat alarming. Do the math, smaller planes, less flghts, fewer feeder destinations.

I keep saying that the current crisis is simply an accelerator of trends already in motion and this is the case with airlift. We are not in unknown territory. In Asia there are many of national legacy carrier disruption. From the Philippines various versions of Philippine Airlines, to Indonesia’s Garuda’s flight bans and onto Malaysia Airlines downsized model.

All of these countries managed through the rough patches, but none has the sheer numbers of international tourists that Thailand does. My nightmare thoughts turn to nearby Cathay Pacific who are key feeders to the country from North Asia and North America and wonder what will happen to that situation. Let’s just say aviation stress is not good for travel.

Another concern is the non-scheduled charter flights, especially the winter ‘snowbirds’ from Europe. TUI’s financial woes and stress in the wholesale tour market that links to charter flights so beach destinations like Phuket, Khao Lak, Krabi and Pattaya will no doubt see less airlift in the coming winter season.

Looking to wrap this up, as in any crisis some form of consolidation is inevitable as will some failed enterprises. We are again at the start of a new cycle but this time out for Thailand who have flirted with the 40 million market, the lack of airlift is likely going to be the biggest mountain to climb in the new few years.

Aviation is so important to the success or failure of tourism but for now, the challenges that face virtually every sector are creating pressure on any clear outlook for the moment. We can look to the sky for answers but for the moment the sky might now answer back. Stay tuned.