Monthly Archives

October 2018

Leading Spanish Hotel Group Meliá Hotels International is committed to MICE

By | 2018

Leisure at Heart, Business in Mind, is the Meliá Hotels International motto and it’s extended to the group’s MICE segment.  The company has developed and made available throughout Meliá Hotels’ worldwide, programmes to meet the needs of their corporate clients and preferences.  This is achieved by offering flexible packages that are innovative and sustainable together with an extensive array of facilities to cater from small to large scale events and conferences.

Through its professional online booking system MeliáPro, organisers or corporate clients, can now choose Meliá’s MICE concepts from its brand portfolio of: EcoTouch Meetings by Meliá; Exceptional Events at the Gran Meliá Hotels & Resorts; Where You Want to Meet at Paradisus by Meliá; ME Studios of ME by Meliá; and Power Meeings in Meliá Hotels & Resorts with INNSIDE by Meliá offering Big Idea Space.

Organisers can also rely on more than 300 MICE professionals of the Meliá Hotels International team, ready to assist in holding and managing events, which is further facilitated with the Meliá Group booking tool.  A comprehensive solution whereby you can make your own online bookings on a personalised webpage designed for each event.

While its Eco Touch Meetings by Meliá is established based on sustainability as an added value, is aligned with the hotels’ adherence towards protecting the environment which is one of the hotels’ pillars of corporate responsibility strategy. It typifies the group’s effort to raise awareness and promote education among its customers regarding the need to use resources responsibly and, the environmental impact generated by the customers’ activities.

Luxury and sophistication are constantly present in Gran Meliá’ Hotel & Resorts professional events from a wide range of meeting rooms available, meeting concierge services at your disposal for every detail of your business meetings to surprising coffee breaks specially prepared for the event.

At the Paradisus by Meliá for example, the property has large convention facilities with a capacity of up to 1,200 people. This is together with indoor and outdoor event areas to host any size group, themed activities and customised life enriching experiences.

In Power Meetings, you will be able to get signature meeting rooms that include sitting options, such as the use of fitness balls, to versatile set up opportunities with the walls becoming brain storming canvases.  Here Meliá aims to portray an innovative and a more up-to-date way of conducting business.

Thinking out of the box to showcase your event is the offering of ME Studios with co-working spaces where state-of-the-art technology and contemporary art merged to give a different approach to normal meeting spaces. Latest technology, gadgets, lights and sound equipment blend with artist propositions to transform meeting spaces into an impressive venue.

The Big Idea Space of INNSIDE by Meliá takes on a totally different approach to meetings that are out of the ordinary, encouraging more flexibility and creativity.  For example the open living lounge which is actually the lobby of the hotel, it has a multi-purpose set-up where you can be comfortable, a place to work and have a meeting in an informal environment.  Connectivity is available throughout the hotel for online communications and a gym for your workout.

Environmental Sustainable Development, Defending Rights of Children, to Helping Train and Employ Vulnerable Young People

By year 2020, Meliá International Hotels, through the group’s environmental sustainability initiative, hopes to reduce water usage per stay by eight percent and achieve 70 percent overall green energy use.  A success case is the Meliá Serengeti where the lodge is designed with the protection and preservation of the surrounding environment – approximately 45 percent of its energy is generated by solar panels.

Soap for Hope is a project launched globally in October 2013 and of June this year, the project in the Asia Pacific (APAC) helped to recycle nearly nine tonnes of solid soap waste – producing more than 70 thousand bars of soap which have a direct impact on over 6,000 people.

 In support of children,  Meliá operates with the collaboration of UNICEF in the defence of the Rights of Children by offering active involvement of its employees, customers and suppliers for a better future of children through employability especially, opportunities in the tourism sector.  In addition to providing training to develop talents to fill the new demand for employees, Meliá Hotels International works with benchmark organisations to activate projects that focus on promoting social and occupational integration of youths at risk through improving their skills and abilities beyond technical and theoretical training.

Cooperation with the Pinardi Foundation started in 2013 on a project called ‘Eleven more to eat’. About eleven young people were trained as assistant chefs at the Tryp Madrid Alcalá 611 as part of a training programme in and with the company, run by the Pinardi Foundation. The project is aimed at socially vulnerable young people that are capable of learning technical skills in a real working environment.

By fostering these skills on the job, it allows young people access to a learning experience in a real-life context that also helps develop specific skills for positions which are in demand in the tourism industry.

In 2015 the initial project grew in its scope and ambition with Meliá Hotels International taking on the challenge of improving the employability of thirty-five youngsters – all at risk of social exclusion and, who had not completed their studies. The project was recognised as one of the best corporate social responsibility initiatives on an international level by the World Tourism Organisation, for its commitment to the employability of young people at risk of exclusion.

Outdoor Areas for Events

Meetings and Conference Facilities

Images are by Meliá Hotels International.

Ruben Casas, regional business development senior director Asia Pacific of Meliá Hotels International spoke to Julia Douglas, managing editor, MICE in Asia on the hotels’ MICE segment and corporate social responsibility projects.  It was during the ITB Asia 2018 held at Marina Bay Sands Expo & Convention Centre in Singapore.

Making a Difference Raddsion Hotel Collaborates with SOS Children’s Villages International in a Heart Warming Initiative to Help Children’s Education

By | 2018

Founded by Austrian philanthropist Hermann Gmeiner in 1949 in Imst, Austria, he was committed to helping children in need especially those who had lost their homes, security and families as a result of the Second World War. Through the support of several donors and co-workers, the organisation has grown to help children all over the world.

The charity takes action for children as an independent non-governmental social development organisation. It respects varying religions and cultures, and work in countries and communities where their mission can contribute to development. SOS Children’s Villages work in the spirit of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child and promote these rights around the world

Working in collaboration with SOS Children’s Villages International, Radisson Hotel Group launch a new charitable initiative – ‘Make a Difference’ from October 22 to 31 March 31, 2019.

During this period, for every night booked under this campaign in a participating hotel in Asia Pacific, Radisson Hotel Group will donate USD1 directly to SOS Children’s Villages – helping fund the education of underprivileged children across the region

Katerina Giannouka, president, Asia Pacific, Radisson Hotel Group said, “We care passionately about people within and beyond the walls of our hotels. This campaign demonstrates our commitment to building a better and brighter future for underprivileged children through education. We also provide them an opportunity of working with Radisson Hotel Group upon completion of their studies.”

Whilst Suarabh Prakash, vice president, commercial, Asia Pacific added: “We are happy to support SOS Children’s Villages as part of our company’s Responsible Business efforts. This project will enable our guests to contribute to society and various communities in Asia Pacific.”

Radisson Hotel Group will sponsor the children’s education, providing a future for them. This includes offering the children a potential job at one of Radisson Hotel Group’s properties upon completion of their education.

SOS Children’s Villages International is a nonprofit international development organisation working to meet the needs and protect children’s interests and rights around the world.

Finnair – Flag Carrier of Finland Establishes itself as the Gateway between Europe and Asia

By | 2018

In a conversation with Jonne Lehtioksa, the area vice president of Asia & Oceania, the commercial unit of Finnair at the ITB Asia 2018 in Singapore, he discussed with the managing editor of MICE in Asia, Julia Douglas the airlines position to connect Europe with Asia.

Finland’s largest airline Finnair flies to Helsinki, the stopover city breaking the long haul flight from Asia, with Helsinki Airport being a hub to other major European cities. The strategy of Finnair’s Europe to Asia is; on one hand to tap on the growing market of travellers in Asia through providing fast flight connections; and the other is Finnair’s position as an unrivalled competitor on its Asian routes in the Nordic market.

Lehtioksa mentioned that Asian cities such as Tokyo, Shanghai, Hong Kong and Singapore are classified as business destinations, while Bangkok is more on leisure.

Flying to an Asian destination however is not new to Finnair, the airline was the first European carrier to operate non-stop from Tokyo in 1983 and now flies to Fukuoka, Osaka and Nagoya. While China remains today a key market in Finnair’s Europe-Asia strategy. The airline offers 26 weekly flights from Helsinki to its four Chinese gateways of Beijing, Shanghai, Chongqing and Hong Kong.

A member of the oneworld alliance, Finnair expands its code share partners to the non member airlines of: Aeroflot, Air China, Air France, Bangkok Airways, Belavia Belarusian Airlines, Icelander and TAP Air Portugal. Currently Finnair flies to some 18 cities in Asia through the ulitisation of its long haul fleet of A350’s with the economies of scale and fuel consumption of 30 percent less from the older aircraft.

Meanwhile Helsinki is able to benefit from these Asia flights.  The city is ranked as one of the most live able cities by the Economist Intelligence Unit with well organised public transport systems and low crime rate. Finland is also a known holiday destination and  there is a lot going at Lapland. You can experience Finnish sauna, refreshing ice swimming, nature walks, visit Santa Claus village or go hunting for the spectacular Northern Lights.

Left: Jonne Lehtioksa, Area Vice President, Asia & Oceania Commercial Unit of Finnair being interviewed by Julia Douglas, Managing Editor of MICE in Asia during the ITB Asia 2018 at the Marina Bay Sands Expo & Convention Centre Singapore.

Asia’s Leading Travel Trade Show ITB Asia 2018 Wrap’s Up on a High Note

By | 2018

This year ITB Asia 2018 welcomed new exhibitors as it unveiled its largest exhibitor showcase yet. This included Abu Dhabi, Botswana, Canton Sarajevo, Croatia, Fukuoka, Kansai, Mauritius, Mexico, Papua New Guinea, Poland, Rovaniemi, Slovakia and Ukraine among many others.

Under the overarching theme of “Travel Re-imagined”, this year’s conference programme delivered major trends provoking disruption across the travel industry and how companies are innovating to stay ahead. Over 260 speakers who are key industry experts delivered insights at the keynote sessions, as well as focused topics on MICE and the corporate segment, travel and tech space and Muslim travel conference sessions.

“Having surpassed last year’s impressive milestone, we have yet again achieved record breaking numbers as we continue to see the show flourish. As we look forward to next year’s ITB Asia, we continue to build and strengthen our efforts in maintaining ITB Asia as the premier event of the year and the go-to hub for remarkable travel content and inspiring experiences,” said Katrina Leung, managing director of Messe Berlin (Singapore).

Following yet another successful edition, the show is already receiving high exhibitor re-bookings for ITB Asia 2019. The surge in interest for next year’s show has been seen from hotel groups. ITB Asia also sees continued strong support from destinations in the ASEAN region; as well as Abu Dhabi, Turkey and Jordan in the Middle East; and exhibitors such as Austria and Lufthansa City Center amongst others. Eastern European exhibitors such as Hungary and Poland have also confirmed their stand bookings for the 2019 show.

ITB Asia 2019 will be held from 16-18 October 2019 at Sands Expo & Convention Centre, Marina Bay Sands. Exhibitors who are interested in participating in the show, can email for more information.

ITB Asia 2018 Kicks Off with a Record-Breaking Number of Exhibitors

By | 2018

ITB Asia opened its doors on Wednesday, October 17 at the Sands Expo and Convention Centre of Marina Bay Sands in Singapore with over 1,000 exhibitors and 1,000 buyers – an increase of 20 percent in new exhibitors signed for this year’s show. While hotel groups that signed up for the buyers programme recorded more than 125 percent growth.

The growth of new exhibitors for the show was mainly due to the strong demand from Asian and European participants. This year’s new registrations included National tourism organisations (NTO) and Regional Tourism Organisations (RTO). ITB Asia 2018 welcomed new NTO exhibitors from Abu Dhabi, Botswana, Croatia, Mauritius and Papua New Guinea as well as, RTO exhibitors from Fukuoka, Kansai and Rovaniemi.

Katrina Leung, managing director of Messe Berlin (Singapore) said: “ITB Asia continues to maintain its position as the leading travel trade show in Asia. It remains one of the top business platforms for connecting exhibitors and partners with key decision makers in the MICE, corporate and leisure travel industry.”

For the first time too, the show launched a dedicated Muslim Pavilion showcasing Muslim travel  which was the key theme of this year’s ITB Asia; this is especially so, with the release of the Mastercard-Halal Trip Digital Muslim Travel Report (DMTR) 2018 that provides the latest insights and in-depth analysis into the Muslim travel market and behaviour in planning of trips, research and engagement in the digital space.

Meanwhile the number of corporate and MICE participants at ITB Asia increased by 49 percent as compared to last year. To reflect this strong support and the increased focus in this area, ITB Asia 2018, launched several new initiatives for the MICE and corporate segments, including gathering industry leaders at the newly launched MICE & Corporate Hub.

Whilst Asian exhibitors continued to dominate the show floor this year, there have been a strong growth in the number of European exhibitors participating in the show for the first time. This include the ministry of transport and construction of the Slovak Republic, Polish Tourism Organisation, Tourism Association of Canton Sarajevo and Visit Ukraine.


IT&CMA and CTW Asia-Pacific 2018 Brings Yet another Defining Event for MICE and Corporate Travel

By | 2018

The show welcomed some 3,000 delegates including over 500 hosted buyers from more than 50 territories and countries over the course of the 3-day event from September 18 to 20.

This year’s programme recorded 29 networking functions and hosted activities with an education line up of 21 knowledge sessions helmed by over 50 industry thought-leaders from government bodies, related associations, corporate organisations and industry professions.

Two stellar sessions took place this year: the first ICCA-TTG Passionate Breakfast themed “Graceful Powers” celebrated the journey of women and diversity in the workforce with female achievers; who have made their mark in the industry sharing their experiences.

The other is the inaugural Asian MICE Cruise Conference of a half-day programme attended by close to 400 major cruise players and stakeholders in the region. Insights centred on the industry’s demand for MICE onboard cruises and the incentives and initiatives present to meet this potential.

TCEB’s senior vice president for business, Nichapa Yoswee, affirmed, “TCEB is proud to showcase Thailand at IT&CMA and CTW Asia-Pacific. Highlight of this year, is the launch of our new brand Thailand: Redefine Your Business Events to project Thailand as a co-creator in delivering exceptional experience for MICE travellers when our industry redefines its way of thinking and action to meet shifting business demands and the Thailand 4.0 policy, which will make Thailand stay ahead of the competition.”