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Our focus is to grow the Middle East guest numbers

Carl Duggan, area general manager at Centara Grand Phratamnak Pattaya talks to Travel Bulletin Middle East about potential of tapping and growing Middle East numbers…


Overview of the year?

Our property is running at about 80 percent year to date, with arrivals approaching the 20,000 mark and rest of the year is looking positive. We expect the Middle East market to have a strong finish for the year.

How important is the Middle East market for Centara Grand Phratamnak Pattaya?

Our Middle Eastern guests are extremely important for Centara Grand Phratamnak Pattaya and we look forward to welcoming our Middle Eastern guests staying with us, wherein we have the opportunity to showcase our genuine Thai hospitality

Centara Grand Phratamnak Pattaya – Oceana

What is the number of Middle East tourists?

The market is still developing and growing on an annual basis, we expect to see double-digit growth next year from the Middle Eastern market.

Which countries are stronger in terms of guest numbers from this region?

Our top five countries currently from the Middle East are Iran, Kuwait, UAE, KSA and Bahrain

What strategies are being adopted to promote the property in the Middle East?

We are working together with our sales and marketing team on the ground to promote our properties through social media and our company website along with selected Middle Eastern-based airlines. As a company, we have just opened the Centara Muscat Hotel and have several new Centara properties under development in the region. This will assist in creating more brand awareness making Centara a more familiar brand in the Middle East region.

How does the property cater for Middle East guests?

We have quite a few options such as a vegetarian menu, Qibla in guest rooms, fruit amenities in guest rooms and a comprehensive knowledge of the local Arabic and Halal restaurants and general food scene.

Any new developments or refurbishments this year?

The completion of our second wing is nearing completion and will be completed in Q4 adding another 52 rooms to the property.

Centara Grand Phratamnak Pattaya – rooftop pool bar

What are key USPs of the property?

Some of our unique selling points (USPs) include a Nespresso coffee machine in every room throughout the property, lobby furniture from the Italian fashion house of Fendi as well as in the suites. Our property has an alluring underwater theme with several aquariums throughout the property with the main event being the predator tank located in Oceana, where we have five blacktip reef sharks and three bamboo sharks, which glide through the coral backdrop that is teaming with other marine life. Guests can dine right by the aquarium. Our rooftop also offers views of the Gulf of Thailand featuring our swimming pool, gym and Italian restaurant and lounge ‘Ruffino’.

What are the focus areas for 2018?

Our focus for 2018 is to be able to offer Arabian and Halal food options, prayer mats, and updated prayer timings, we also expect that we will be able to offer female housekeeping employees for all Arab families, hospital visit assistance, shopping benefits and more family-oriented benefits.