Phuket a super-star for hotel performance

Phuket NEWS Hound

– A daily digest of news from around the world compiled by Gazette editors for Phuket’s international community

PHUKET: According to data compiled by STR Global Hotels and reported by Hotel News Now, the Asia/Pacific region, and most notably Phuket, experienced increases in all three key performance metrics for March 2010.

“The Asia/Pacific region is still leading the way in the global recovery”, said Elizabeth Randall, managing director of STR Global. “It has posted five consecutive months of occupancy, ADR [average daily rate], and RevPAR [revenue per available room] increases, fueling a 23-percent RevPAR jump in the first quarter of 2010.”

Highlights from key market performers for March 2010 include the fact Phuket was second only to Beijing in experiencing the region’s largest occupancy increases, with Phuket up 32.4% to 77.3%, versus Beijing’s 33.8% to 67.1%.

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And four markets reported RevPAR increases of over 40%, with Phuket leading the way at 55.7% to US$103.36, followed by Brisbane, Sydney and Hong Kong.

Phuket property web in limelight

PR Urgent
Phuket.Net Real Estate received a prestigious award at this year’s Asia Pacific Property Awards, presented in association with Bloomberg Television in Hong Kong earlier this month.

The real estate agency was awarded a “Highly Commended” prize, in the Best Agent Website category, for its Phuket property site.

The awards, which are part of the International Property Awards, are now in their 16th year and widely considered the blue-chip competition for real estate professionals around the world. Underlining its eminent status was the fact that this year’s event included representatives from 19 countries across the region.

“We are extremely honoured to receive such a prestigious award bestowed by our industry peers,” said Kit Fordham, general manager and co-founder of Phuket.Net Real Estate.

Phuket resort hot-listed

E global travel news
Andara Resort & Villas Phuket has hit the coveted Conde Nast Traveler (USA) Hot List for 2010. Conde Nast’s Hot List one of the International travel industry’s most prestigious selections of best new hotels. 

The magazine’s review of high-end hotels opened over the past 12 months highlighted Andara’s generous in-room gadgetry and exceptional kitchen facilities. Further praise was given with the words “arguably Phuket’s plushest”.

The resort’s stunning views over the Andaman Sea were also noted.

“We are honoured to receive this level of recognition from Conde Nast Traveler (USA)”, said Andrew Whitaker, General Manager.

Oldies boost Phuket

Travel Daily News
Asian economies are expected to fully recover from the effects of the global recession, with the medical tourism and retirement sectors, both of which are prominent in Phuket, touted as sunrise industries that will propel the economic growth of the whole region.

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) earlier said that developing Asia’s GDP would grow by 7.5% this year, a big leap from 5.2% in 2009. The projected growth rate is higher than those of other parts of the world.

Asian countries, including Thailand, and particularly Phuket, are gaining popularity as retirement havens, with growing numbers of senior citizens from Western countries leaving their homeland for tropical destinations.

Meeting the needs of this “silver market” is seen to be a major economic driver not just for the healthcare industry in the region, but also for the property sector.

Medical tourism healthy

Business Week
Even as Bangkok suffers the protests and fallout from political unrest, Thailand’s medical-tourism industry has been surprisingly resilient.

Since the demonstrations started last month, the stock price of Bumrungrad Hospital, probably the premier destination in Thailand for international patients, is only down about 8 percent.

Meanwhile, Bangkok Chain Hospital is down just 1 percent and Bangkok Dusit Medical is actually up by 0.8 percent.

The benchmark Thai index is down 1.7 percent.

The timing of the Red Shirt revolt explains much of the downtrend, according to analyst Raweenuch Piyakriengkai of KGI Securities. He suggests that the second quarter of the year is low season for the health-care sector, regardless of what’s happening in the streets.

“It is [primarily] the off-peak tourism season, which means less international patient traffic,” he says.

Protests: Compromise in sight?

Red-shirt protesters and the Thai army have made tentative peace overtures on the condition that parliament is dissolved in one month – a change from the previous call for immediate dissolution and elections.

The conditional offer of talks was made by red-shirt leader Veera Musikapong.

“After the House dissolution, the government will have another 60 days to prepare for elections. In total it will be 90 days… but the government has to stop threatening people and show responsibility for what has happened.”

Meanwhile, army commander-in-chief Anupong Paojinda declared that the use of force would “not end the current problems and would have many repercussions.”

“The army’s job now is to take care of the people, and not allow Thais to attack each other,” he said.

— Gazette Editors

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