Recent statistics show that in 2013, 97 million Chinese travelled internationally with Dubai reaping benefits of this with 143,000 Chinese visitors in the first six months of the year. This was a scenario mirrored in Abu Dhabi where Chinese visitor numbers for the first seven months of 2013 were up 36%.
Riding on this growing trend, Millennium & Copthorne is keen to tap into this burgeoning market and increase its share of the inbound Chinese visitor numbers into the UAE and wider Middle East.
“We’re in a fortunate position – Chinese tour operators are well aware of our brand, with 10 hotels in mainland China and a further 13 properties throughout South East Asia. Moreover our 17 hotels in the Middle East region are well placed to serve Chinese visitors. We often see Chinese leisure travellers dividing their stay between several hotels during a three to seven-night stay,” said Naeem Darkazally, vice president of sales and marketing, Millennium & Copthorne Middle East & Africa.
With Dubai only a seven hour flight from Beijing, an increase in inbound visitors from the Chinese capital to the UAE has augmented Millennium & Copthorne Hotels marketing strategy to target the burgeoning travel sector. A dedicated Chinese website and the launch of a WeChat app, the mobile communications tool used by over 70 million people in China, have all been integrated into marketing activity as spend from Chinese visitors set to top US$284 bn globally by 2024 according to the World Travel & Tourism Council.
Millennium & Copthorne Middle East & Africa, currently has a packed pipeline of new openings during the next 18 months with an overall target of 50 properties to be opened throughout the Middle East and Africa by 2017.