French resort company Club Med is expecting its best ever year for the MICE market in Asia-Pacific.
WORDS JAMES WILKINSON IN BINTAN, INDONESIA
Sole use demand is on the rise for Club Med across the globe, thanks to the chain’s ongoing upgrading of properties in Asia-Pacific.
Speaking exclusively to HM, Club Med Managing Director – Asia Pacific, Oliver Horps, said the MICE market continued to pick-up for the chain during 2010, including demand for companies seeking sole-use of properties.
“We have had strong demand for what we call ‘rent a resort’ at Club Med,” he said. “We had a huge group from China, and some as well other bookings and it is picking up strongly this year.
With Club Med’s all-inclusive product, Horps said the company is in the perfect position to be able to offer sole-use and remained confident about that segment of the market remaining strong.
He also said the MICE market overall was strong for Club Med and the outlook was very positive.
“The MICE market is doing well,” he said. “Last year it was a bit down with the crisis, but we have had a strong rebound and we will hit a record level (of MICE business) this year.
Horps said the pick-up in MICE business was thanks to the ongoing refurbishment of the chains properties, particularly in Asia-Pacific.
“We have been very active renovating the properties… renovating Bintan, Bali (both Indonesia) and Cherating (Malaysia) and we are seeing more attraction from the MICE market.
“We are attracting banks, insurance, luxury goods and other high-end companies that we haven’t really attracted before,” he said.
One resort receiving significant MICE business is Club Med Lindeman Island, a property that is expected to undergo a refurbishment in the not-too-distant future.
“We have some plans for Lindeman Island and we are looking at some capital solutions to do something with the resort in the future,” he said.
HM spoke to Horps at the opening of Club Med Bintan Island Resort’s new day spa, the latest addition to a popular property that underwent a refurbishment 18 months ago.
Club Med Bintan Island Resort is a 45-minute ferry ride from Singapore and counts Australia as one of its largest markets. The property features three restaurants – including two that can be used for private gala dinners – along with two swimming pools, 250-metres of private beaches, a flying trapeze, tennis courts and a gymnasium.
Club Med Bintan Island Resort is also located a short drive from four world-class golf courses (designed by Greg Norman, Ian Baker-Finch, Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player), another reason for the property’s success with both the MICE and leisure markets.
flew to Singapore with Singapore Airlines, the carrier that offers the most flights from Australia to the ‘Lion City’. Singapore Airlines offers Suites*, First, Business and Economy classes on selected flights between Australia and Singapore, several of which are on the Airbus A380 superjumbo. The seats in Business Class are the widest in the market and the cabin features food from Matt Moran (Aria Restaurants in Sydney and Brisbane) and a superlative drinks list from Australian Master of Wine, Michael Hill Smith. Singapore Airlines also features an award-winning entertainment system, Krisworld, which offers over 80 on-demand movies in all cabins. *Suites are available only on the Airbus A380. For bookings, visit www.singaporeair.com.au