Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Terengganu hotels filling up fast

With the exception of Kemaman, hotels throughout the state are enjoying a 90 per cent occupancy rate since the beginning of this week.

And the industry has the Chinese New Year holidays to thank. Tourism Malaysia Terengganu director Mohd Amirul Rizal Abdul Rahim said most of the tourists were Malaysians who were taking advantage of the long weekend to visit the state.

The ratio of domestic to foreign tourists, he said, stood at 60:40, while for Kuala Terengganu it was at 80:20.

“It’s great for the industry and it is a good indicator of things to come seeing that the islands, which are the main draw, are yet to open.

“Holiday packages to Terengganu are selling well,” he told the New Straits Times.

Matta Terengganu committee member Alex Lee said this was the first time the state had seen a significant improvement despite it being early in the year.

Lee said locals would normally shy away from Terengganu due to the perception that it is still the monsoon season.

The branding and packages offered during the Matta fairs, had played a vital role in wooing people here, he said, adding that industry players were surprised at the increase in tourists this time of the year.

State Industrial Development and Tourism Committee chairman Datuk Mohamed Awang Tera said that tourists, especially those from Kuala Lumpur, flocked to Terengganu to escape the hectic life and enjoy the serenity here.

“We have also been promoting the state and Kuala Terengganu as a destination filled with natural heritage and waterfront city respectively since last year.

“With the newly opened Islamic Civilisation theme park and other new tourism products, we have lots to offer.”

Ming Star hotel general manager Taufek Mohamed said the hotel was fully booked which was a good omen for Visit Terengganu Year and hoped this would continue.

“The state has done a good job promoting tourism here and more tourists means a better spillover for related tourism players such as handicraft and keropok lekor producers,” he said.

Source : NST
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