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Participants mark Phuket's success at a meeting on the island today

Phuket Begins Climb to Asean Summit Success

Monday, May 4, 2009
Update - Phuket Wins

AFTER meeting with diplomatic representatives from 15 nations this morning, Deputy PM Suthep Teuksuban declared Phuket official host of the June 13-14 Asean Plus Six Summit, with Hilton Phuket Arcadia in Karon as the conference centre.

KEY PHUKET business organisations gathered today to plan a perfect Asean Plus Six Summit that will boost the island's international profile.

The focus was on proving Phuket's capacity to host a major event without the kind of security nightmare experienced in Pattaya the first time around.

Thai Airways was represented at the meeting at Phuket City's Merlin Hotel, an indication that attention will be paid to the extra flights required to move large numbers of people in and out.

Patong and Kata-Karon resorts have perhaps an even greater interest in making sure everything goes smoothly when the leaders of 16 nations meet over the June 13-14 weekend.

The ramifications for Phuket are obvious: get this right and thousands of potential customers in China, Japan, Korea, India, Australia and across South East Asia will get the message that Phuket is a secure and safe destination.

And that it has sun, sea, sand and smiles aplenty. Get it wrong, and . . . well, just ask any Pattaya resort how their room occupancy rates are after the Songkran disaster.

Today, optimism ruled.

Dr Sirichai Sinlapacha, secretary of the Phuket Chamber of Commerce, said a successful the Asean Plus Six Summit should bring benefits to Phuket.

If all went well, the Government should repay the island with a new light rail public transport system or at the very least, a proper island conference centre.

Of Thailand's 76 provinces, Phuket ranked 75th when it came to national investment, tailed only by its neighbor, Phang Nga, he said.

Investment in Phuket was likely to increase, along with tourism, said a representative from the Phuket Provincial Industrial Office.

The president of the Thai Hotels Association, Methee Tanmanatrgul, said Phuket would be helping Thailand by holding a successful summit.

''Everybody should perform as well as they possibly can, so that people know Phuket is a great destination. It will help to overcome the problems generated by politics.

''I would like to tell everybody, 'please do your best, for the sake of Phuket's future.'''

A minimum of 100 million baht would come Phuket's way as a direct benefit of the 1600 delegates and 1200 media.

He said millions more would come in the long-term benefit to Phuket's profile.

The president of the local Orborjor, Paiboon Upatising, is the island's key elected administrator.

He said responsibility for improving and beautifying the island would be delegated to individual local councils.

''Six weeks is not a lot of time to prepare so everything will have to be done quickly,'' he said.

Resorts were already getting set, said the president of the Patong Hotels Association, Kitsada Tansakul. The same message was echoed by Sombat Artiset, president of the Kata-Karon Hotels Association.

Winner Phuket Gets Set For Asean Plus Windfall
Photo Gallery Tourism leaders on Phuket see the Asean Plus Six summit, coming the island's way in June, as a major boost at a time of uncertainty, good for morale and revenue, too.
Winner Phuket Gets Set For Asean Plus Windfall

Phuket Summertime Summit: Photo Special
Photo Album They came, they saw, they shared a drink or two, and talked about the weather. That was the Summertime Summit, languid and relaxed as a summer's day.
Phuket Summertime Summit: Photo Special

Phuket Hub: AirAsia Set For Resorts Growth
Photo Album: Budget carrier AirAsia is expected to open one or more low cost resorts on Phuket in its drive for a slice of business from China and beyond.
Phuket Hub: AirAsia Set For Resorts Growth

Stalwart Aussies, Brits Prop Up Phuket Numbers
Latest Nation by nation statistics for Q3 last year show the dramatic decline inflicted by political uncertainty and the Phuket airport closure. Tourism is still paying a hefty price.
Stalwart Aussies, Brits Prop Up Phuket Numbers

Phuket Light Rail Plan Starts on 52b Baht Track
Latest Many ideas have been suggested down the years for Phuket's transport needs. Now a Singapore based private investment group suggests a light rail network.
Phuket Light Rail Plan Starts on 52b Baht Track

Few Skirmishes for Phuket Property: US Report
Latest How has political unrest in Pattaya and Bangkok affected the Phuket real estate market, asks the New York Times. The answer: quite significantly, notes one visiting correspondent.
Few Skirmishes for Phuket Property: US Report

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Saturday August 8, 2020
Horizon Karon Beach Resort & Spa

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