CREATING TOURISM MEDIA ASSETS

Malaysia benefits from Cleverdis promotional support thanks to new hub for media

In order to assist in the promotion of Tourism Malaysia, Cleverdis (publishers of the SMARTreport, along with the official show dailies at ITB Berlin, China and Asia) have undertaken a mission to create stories and media assets, visiting numerous locations in Malaysia and gathering information that’s “ready to run” for media or trade. The result is TourMAB.com, the world’s first easy-to-use rights-free asset base specifically designed for media professionals in the travel and tourism trades. Following is a selection of some of the top stories gathered so far…

PENANG: NEW CANOPY WALK ENHANCES HABITAT

Visitors to Penang’s virgin rainforest now have an extra way to enjoy the breath- taking surroundings, thanks to a 230-metre canopy bridge opened this year.

The Habitat is a world-class eco-tourism facility located on the fringes of a 130-million-year-old rainforest on Penang Hill. This rainforest precariously exists side- by-side with urban Penang and its environs. The Habitat’s eco-friendly attractions include an historical 1.6km Nature Trail built in the early 1800s by the British East India Company. The latest edition is a canopy bridge entitled “Langur Way”. Enjoying a higher perspective thanks to a series of two suspension bridges 40 meters above the rainforest floor, visitors are able to soak in the surrounding sounds or catch a glimpse of the wildlife such as the Dusky Leaf Langur and its family swinging around in the rainforest. The Habitat Canopy Walk is designed and engineered to be “tree friendly” without rigging any of the steel cables directly onto the trees. The spacious and sturdy platforms provide a safe and unobstructed up-close view of the jungle’s canopy.

 

DISCOVERING MALAYSIA’S SECRET SOUTH

Johor state is one of the least-known destinations for foreign visitors heading for Malaysia. But that is changing quite rapidly. Deputy Director Tourism Malaysia Southern Region – Aaron Gan Chai Heng explains that the state of Johor has started to progress as an emerging market for Malaysia: “The trend started in 2010. That was when the regional development authorities started a major project on what is now known as Legoland. It was a huge project that was already in its planning stages in 2008. Development took some time, but starting 2014 onwards, when Legoland started its operations, we started to capture a different target market. Previously what would happen is that travellers coming from Singapore would just do day trips to Johor Bahru, to see the museums and the Mosques and so on. But over the years, due to the currency exchange we started to see a change in demand, where people were wanting more and more to stay in hotels in Johor Bahru, travelling to Singapore for a day-trip.”

In Johor Bahru city, one can see rapid development today, with high rise buildings coming up so fast. Public transportation will be fully in place by 2022, with the Bus Rapid Transit system (BRT) starting in 2021 and the Rail Transit System (RTS) a little later. This will greatly ease traffic congestion.

GOLFING ON DESARU COAST

The Troon group recently completed not one, but two spectacular new Els Club Malaysia golf courses on the country’s Desaru Coast in the southern state of Johor.

The Els Club Desaru Coast Ocean Course offers 27 holes of championship golf designed by Ernie Els. Situated along the Desaru Coast in the southern state of Johor, golfers experience three distinctly different 9-hole courses aptly named the Lakes (Par 36), Coast (Par 36), and the Ridge (Par 37). It also features an almost 5,000 sq m purpose-built clubhouse for meetings & events.

Appointed as General Manager, Stephen Havrilla has 19 years of experience working with Troon Golf, and assumes responsibility for operations of The Els Club Malaysia brand across both of its stunning Malaysian destinations: The Els Club Desaru Coast courses and The Els Club Teluk Datai. Havrilla says the three key assets of the courses are: “Playability, conditioning of the golf courses, and the environment each one sits in. It changes elevation throughout the three nines, so you get a different feel for each nine you play.”

The degree of difficulty changes from the coast all the way to the ridge, so there’s a little bit of everything for every golfer, explains Havrilla.

PARADISE 101: MY OWN PRIVATE ISLAND

When a new breakwater was needed for Langkawi’s Telaga Harbour, the Naam Adventure Tourism Group saw a unique opportunity – to develop a man-made island.

Langkawi’s Paradise 101 Island thus emerged from the sea as a unique one- hectare MICE and family destination – a day resort targeting the domestic and international clientele.

The island’s name comes from the fact that it is the 101st island in the Langkawi archipelago, and thanks to its white sandy beach and swaying casuarina and pinoh trees, overlooking the Andaman Sea, it is indeed very paradise-like. One of the main attractions of this mini-island is the fact that it can be privatised for weddings, awards ceremonies, presentations and a plethora of other uses. Exciting team building events can be organised for the company seeking increased motivation, engagement and communication across the board. Itineraries are tailor-made to the company’s needs; whether it be improved communication or team bonding.


Photo: Els Club Desaru