Against a backdrop of continued economic growth in the region highlighted in the presentation of this year’s Chinese Wealthy Traveller by Hurun Report, ILTM Asia 2017 delivered over 26,000 business appointments for luxury travel brands from 53 countries who met with some 500 buyers from 18 countries across Asia including Hong Kong, China, Australia, New Zealand, India, Thailand, Japan and Indonesia.
Filip Boyen, CEO & Chairman of Small Luxury Hotels of the World summarised the event’s performance for the company: “For me, ILTM Asia is all about quality and the opportunity to get a feel of what’s really happening here in Asia, as well as catching up with my peers and contacts in the industry. The quality of the buyers is second to none and the Chinese mainland buyers are just getting better and better all the time”.
Caroline Goux, Director of Global Sales, Oetker Collection also summed up their participation and the changes taking place in luxury travel itineraries. “It’s been an exciting show for us, we’ve seen a real increase in Chinese buyers looking for more authenticity, more opportunities for their clients to immerse themselves in a destination and be recognised as individual travellers - perfect for hotels like ours”.
The ILTM Asia education seminar - presented by Agility Research & Strategy - also focused on the changing needs of the Asian luxury traveller, revealing research from China, Hong Kong and Singapore, which showed how growing numbers of High Net Worth Individuals (HNWI) expect a highly customised travel experience, how travel and shopping go hand in hand, and how “Singaporeans are now spending the highest percentage of their personalised wealth on luxury travel.”
Alison Gilmore, ILTM Portfolio Director said: “Insights from exhibitors and buyers last week showed how influential Asia Pacific is as an inbound and outbound market. With the announcement that 2018 will see 3 ILTM events in Asia Pacific, we are creating even more opportunities to our clients who want to do business with this part of the world through events dedicated events in Japan, China and Singapore“.
Philip Ho, Senior VP Europe, Middle East, Africa and Asia Pacific, The Leading Hotels of the World said: “We have grown our presence year on year here in Shanghai because of the strong interest from this market inbound to Europe, which has meant more of our hoteliers want to attend. The new emerging markets in South East Asia make sense for the move of creating ILTM Asia Pacific in Singapore. We will be there! At the same time, what ILTM is doing makes sense here in China – it is no longer an emerging market, their needs are very different from the rest of Asia, so this is now a necessary and logical development to have ILTM China”.
Amy Bjarnason of Tourism Whistler also celebrated the news and talked of how this week had provided real business value saying: “ILTM Asia 2017 has been a great investment for us, allowing us to meet with so many high quality, truly qualified buyers in a short amount of time to really make great use of our diaries. Our market focus is on China, so having a dedicated ILTM China really makes sense to us.”
David Miro, Asia-Pacific Director of the Catalan Tourist Board summed up the views of many of the exhibitors present: “I think it’s a great idea to separate the shows: the market here in China is evolving fast and it has different needs that a dedicated show will be able to address.”