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THE OFFICIAL SHOW DAILY——24-27 April 2017 26


As Arabian Travel Market draws to a close today, it marks the beginning of a new chapter for the travel and tourism industry. One that champions collaboration. Across a busy four days, some of


the world’s leading tourism figures came together at a series of special seminar sessions, insightful panel discussions and engaging workshops where the range of topics discussed reflected the many seismic changes taking place across the region’s tour- ism landscape.


SETTING SAIL FOR THE GULF


4 Thursday 27 April 28 The future is now ATM 2017 reflects the region’s tourism evolution As the sector matures, the focus is


now firmly on presenting destinations with a well-rounded tourism offering, encompassing key growth segments including halal travel, cruising and well- ness and spa. At the heart of it all is this year’s show theme, experiential travel, driving demand for a more tailored and authentic approach, where mid- market and family travel is key. With a flurry of activity, new


agreements, launches and partner- ships were forged during the week, providing every indication of sustained


growth and a positive outlook for the entire sector. “It’s absolutely been another


successful year. Bearing in mind that we’ve had eight years of continuous growth at ATM, continued success is always tricky to achieve. Everybody always wants to be bigger and better, but it’s not just about increasing numbers, it’s also about the seniority of buyers, and that’s always the aim – to get the right people, which is something we’ve been concentrating on for the past


MEET THE AGENTSOF CHANGE


few years and certainly achieved this year,” explained ATM Senior Exhibition Director, Simon Press. With Expo 2020 Dubai less than


three years away, all eyes are on the emirate as it aims to complete 160,000 hotel rooms to welcome an additional five million visitors over the course of the six-month event. The show’s open- ing session looked at the role the event will play in delivering the UAE Govern- ment’s long-term vision for economic diversification.


Describing the expo as a “moment


in history” for the entire region, Marjan Faraidooni, Senior Vice President – Legacy Development and Impact Development, Expo 2020 Dubai, the event was touted as one the entire region can be proud of. Faraidooni said: “Expo 2020 Dubai is not only momentous for Dubai, but the entire MENASA region; it’s our chance to show the world we can pull off an event this big. I think we’re going to have a major impact on several industries. Expo is a key moment in the development of Dubai and the UAE – for tourism, for the develop- ment of our knowledge economy and for our presence on the world stage.” Issam Kazim, CEO, Dubai Tourism


also commented on how the expo will be a chance for visitors to explore the “other side of Dubai”. “Not everyone is aware of our


cultural heritage and expo will help us show this to the world – in a big way,” Kazim added. The numbers are already adding up with Dubai attracting a remark- able 4.57 million travellers in the first quarter of 2017, reflecting more than double the growth achieved in the same period last year, with China,


Continued on page 6


STANDING OUT AT SHOW


Innovative exhibitors have been recog- nised for their spectacular stands, which helped make this year’s ATM a memorable edition. The ATM 2017 Best Stand Awards


were presented to Kerzner Interna- tional, Rotana Hotels & Resorts, Al Rais Travel & Shipping Agencies LLC, Etihad Airways and Sabre yesterday. The highly-anticipated awards, which launched in 2015, recognise the design creativity and business- friendly appeal of exhibiting compa- nies’ stands across five impactful categories, including Best Stand Design, Best Stand for Doing Busi- ness, Best Stand Feature, Best Stand Personnel and Best Stand within the Travel Tech Show at ATM. From a unique aircraft within a bus


concept to first-class hospitality and cleverly thought out spaces, this year’s selection of winners won over visitors with distinctive wow factors.


Turn to page 14 for the winners and their stands


RETREAT TO AN URBAN SANCTUARY IN THE HEART OF ABU DHABI.


LIFE IS A JOURNEY. Visit anantara.com


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