By NUR HAZIQAH A MALEK / Pic By MUHD AMIN NAHARUL
The local tourism industry is expected to be driven by focused-service hospitality brands versus the more commonplace limited-service and full-service hotels that are available in the country.
The Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture (Motac) secretary general Datuk Rashidi Hasbullah (picture) said understanding the trend in the hospitality sector is important to push the growth of Malaysia’s tourism sector.
“The introduction of focused-service brands will lead the way in diversifying the hospitality landscape in a positive direction, working alongside other related industries to meet the evolving traveller’s needs in this day and age,” he said at the launch of Hilton Garden Inn Puchong yesterday.
He said it is important for more hotel chains to adopt and develop focused-service brands in order to drive the nation’s hospitality industry.
“Both leisure and business are important to the country’s tourism industry, so the hotels also need to adapt by giving a sense of not just business travelling, but also the country’s identity,” Rashidi said.
With the Hilton group having penetrated the Puchong area, he said more modern development will hopefully follow suit, which would also increase the number of tourists.
“Most locals probably think that a hotel in Puchong seems strange when it’s so far away from everything like the city, but when it is developed, it will be a hotspot for tourists, especially with the increased number from China and India lately,” he said.
Unlike the limited-service hotels that are simple in amenities and targeted for low-income or budget-conscious travellers, and the full-service hotels with its luxurious amenities, focused-service would fill the gap for middle-income business travellers.
Hilton’s new establishment under the Garden Inn brand is part of the company’s plan to double its hotel presence in Malaysia over the next three to five years.
The new hotel has added one more property and 255 rooms to the Hilton group’s present portfolio of nine hotels in Malaysia.
Hilton Malaysia regional GM Jamie Mead said Puchong was chosen because it has significant potential as the destination for modern-day business travellers.
“Hilton Garden Inn’s signature focused-service is the answer to this trend, ensuring savvy travellers have what they need to be productive yet relaxed while on the road,” he said.
It is a part of the Millenia City, a masterplan for a fully-integrated township with both commercial and residential properties by Millennium Land Sdn Bhd, a property development company which now owns the hotel.