Dusit International & Tanota Partners sign management agreement
by Mindy Aguon
Guam - One of Asia's leading hospitality brands signed a hotel management agreement with Tanota Partners today, paving the way for Dusit Thani Guam, which is scheduled to be open in late 2013. The upcoming flagship project intends to raise the bar on hospitality and service on Guam, attract a new type of visitor to the island and put Guam on the map as a first class international destination.
Chanin Donavanik, Dusit International CEO said, "I think there is great potential for this island so that's why we are here. We believe that in our small way we can promote Guam in a different angle than what has happened in the past." He said the partnership was an easy choice as his family and the Ysrael Family on Guam are personally committed to the service industry. Both have similar backgrounds with decades of experience in the hotel and service industries.
"It will open a new chapter for Guam tourism," noted Michael Ysrael with Tanota Partners.
The Dusit Thani Guam will be a 30-floor, 415-room beachside world class hotel with a convention center and the largest spa and wellness center on the island and at least five restaurants that will raise the bar when it comes to service and hospitality. Dusit properties are world renowned for their impeccable attention to detail and showcasing the Thai hospitality. "The idea is how to blend what we have been doing well in Asia to what has been a culture of Guam. I think that's something we can work on and we can do more," continued Donavanik.
The success of the new venture though will be dependent on attracting a new type of visitor to Guam. Currently the island's tourism is mass market and tour agent driven. Ysrael added, "This is a great opportunity for Guam to open up and inviting more the free independent traveler versus the mass market." His sister, Donna Baker, said, "We're kind of pushing the envelope on Guam and we believe that we will all rise as the tide rises and Guam can attract the higher income visitors we can attract the longer stay visitors if we improve our service."
Dusit international vice chairman Giovannni Angelini says the key is spreading the word about Guam being a first class destination and attracting some of the three billion people in Asia to take a short flight to the territory to experience all the island has to offer. "Guam needs much, much stronger promotion in the region first and then perhaps going to Europe and so on," he explained.
The partners say seat capacity from major Asian cities in China, Thailand, Hong Kong and Singapore will be the biggest challenge. Donavanik said he will approach Thai Airways and other airlines encouraging them to start up direct flights to Guam. Ysrael, who also serves as chairman of the Guam International Airport Authority's board, says that agency is doing its part, too. "When we bring up the level of Guam tourism the rest of our tourist market will improve. The timing will be very good especially if we end up with the visa waiver program in the future," he said.