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Phuket ‘heavy-hitters’ to headline Thailand Tourism Forum

BANGKOK: Some of Phuket’s most influential figures in the island’s leading tourism industry will headline as expert speakers at the Thailand Tourism Forum (TTF) annual gathering of top hotel industry professionals at the InterContinental Hotel Bangkok on Jan 23.

tourism, economics,

The Phuket News

Saturday 19 November 2016, 11:42AM

Now in its sixth year, TTF is organised by Thailand’s American Chamber of Commerce (AMCHAM) and C9 Hotelworks with support from InterContinental Hotel Group and continues to position itself as a key platform for hospitality business leaders and tourism experts to candidly discuss the state of the industry.

The upcoming edition of TTF will focus on how Thailand’s tourism sector can adapt and maintain a strong, long-term growth trajectory while embracing disruptive trends that range from the sharing economy to a significant growth in millennial domestic travellers, said a release issued by organisers this week.

“Despite global economic woes, extreme currency fluctuations and considerable domestic challenges, Thailand has continued to see a steady increase tourist arrivals through 2016. The Tourism Authority of Thailand recently announced that the country is on track to exceed arrival targets for this year, which will generate more than B2.58 trillion (US$73.7 billion) in tourism revenue for the country – up 14% from 2015,” the release noted.

“Even amid such a positive big picture outlook, persistent challenges remain for Thailand’s hospitality sector. For hotels, there’s the constant task of maintaining ADR and achieving respectable RevPar in an increasingly competitive regional marketplace; for destination-focused businesses there's the need to remain agile and fresh in a constantly evolving travel landscape. These demands and market dynamics will be analysed by expert presenters and debated via lively panel discussions at the Thailand Tourism Forum 2017 during a full afternoon programme that flows into a well attended networking event,” the release said.

“In a world of instant updates and ever-changing travel technologies, trends and attitudes, it’s more important than ever to be an innovative player in the industry,” said Bill Barnett, Managing Director, C9 Hotelworks, one of the event’s founders and organizers.

“TTF 2017 will focus on key statistics and emerging trends. It will also showcase some of the powerful new Thai regional destination brands that have emerged in recent years, and consider how new ideas and aspirations are reshaping hospitality.”

Underlining the importance of new generation thinking for hotels and hospitality businesses in Thailand, TTF will this year welcome Vorasit “Wan” Issara, Managing Director of Sri panwa, a member company of Charn Issara Group.

Sri panwa is one of Thailand’s leading luxury hotels and Mr Vorasit is very active in the group’s hospitality undertakings which also include Baba Beach Club Hotel in Phang Nga and Baba Beach Club Hotel in Cha Am – Hua Hin.

Also among the panellists will be Gavin Vongkusolkit, Founder & MD, founder and managing director of Heritage Estates Co., Ltd. which owns and operates Ad Lib Hotel, Glowfish Serviced Offices, various office properties in Bangkok, and six outlets of KuppaDeli cafes.

Mr Vongkusolkit has served as a director of the Erawan Group Plc. since 2011, and is also a director of YEC – the Young Entrepreneurs of the Thai Chamber of Commerce (Bangkok Chapter).


After the expected usually thought-provoking opening remarks from Mr Barnett, which traditionally set the scene for the dynamic discussions that follow, presenters at TTF 2017 will include Jesper Palmqvist, Area Director – Asia Pacific, STR, Nihat Ercan, Executive Vice President, Investment Sales Asia, JLL and Wimintra Jangnin – Editor in Chief – Hotel Intel.

The panels will be moderated by Charles Blocker, CEO, IC Partners; Robert V. R. Hecker, Managing Director, Horwath HTL; David Keen, CEO, QUO; and Eric Levy, Managing Director, TSI.

Senior executives from a number of leading international hotel brands will also join the panel discussions, including InterContinental Hotels Group, ONYX Hospitality Group, Dusit International, Rosewood Hotel Group and Accor Hotels.

They will be joined by top level representatives from major Thai Hotels including Plaza Athenee Bangkok and The Siam Bangkok, as well as the offer mentioned Sri panwa and The Slate on Phuket.

Expert opinion will also be provided by Khun Tanes Petsuwan, Deputy Governor – International Marketing Strategy, Tourism Authority of Thailand; Mark Simmons, Marketing Advisor, Phuket Hotels Association; Chittimas Ketvoravit, Managing Director, D.K. Lam Properties; and Khun Vorada Jia Thangsurbkul, FEVP Investment Banking Division, Siam Commercial Bank Plc.

“The 2016 forum was our best yet with more than 500 delegates. We expect TTG 2017 to be even bigger as it not only offers a unique opportunity for considered conversation but also the chance for professionals to connect with their industry peers,” said Charles Blocker.

Attendance at TTF 2017 is free of charge with advanced registration required.

To register click here, or for more information email or call (+66) 02-254-1041 (ext. 212).

To see a full programme of the upcoming forum, click here.



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Kurt | 20 November 2016 - 14:51:42

Such a TTF forum, including YEC-STR-JLL-ONYX-FEVP, with refreshments and cocktail during network time.
All great!
However, this article started with:
.."The most influential figures in the Island leading tourist industry"...
However, the influential figures who rule Phuket are the unlawfull beach happening, jet ski-, parasail-, and transport mafia.
Any other so called 'influential' organization is not influential. Period.
Proof? No one influential is turning the Phuket Airport mess into something better.
Transport mafia simply confiscated again the airport old parking lot were previously visitors/travelers could park.
It was cleared in the passed, but they took it back.
It is a part of the coming-going drive in drive out problem.
The transport mafia took the space completely, and coming-going private traffic get squeezed in a messy way.

The laughing thirds are these who money coffers are getting now filled.
 The old thing: create a mess, and fill your pockets with it.

The Phuket News

Ed Sanders | 20 November 2016 - 00:47:27

This is nothing more than a junket and a party, and a meeting for all the hotel managers to pat themselves on the back for their one-upmanship and boast of how many jillions they shipped out of Thailand.  It is more a meeting of the foxes talking about how to build the chicken coop...and true Eric, probably not much of substance discussed.  But forget your whining about plastic beach chairs and beer and padt thai on the sand (which you can already get pretty much everywhere), the critical issue are pollution, particularly water pollution, but most of these people represent facilities that were too greedy and penny pinching to install or contribute to real infrastructure, and now contribute significant pollution loads to an overwhelmed environment. I would guess that at least half of these hotels cater to unsuspecting guests that flush their toilets at night, then go swim in it the next day.

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eric dekegel | 19 November 2016 - 12:13:33

I am sure that nobody of the phuket delagation  had the courage to speak about the real problems of Phuket,empty beaches,not organized now for more then 2 years,no leader who takes responsability to organize something that is good for the phuket people and the tourists at the beaches, sur the question why was not asked.....Everybody very friendly to each other and no solutions at the end of the day!

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