Macau brandishes a robust calendar of events round the year to attract international visitors and give them reasons to stay longer.
Positioning Macau as a City of Events is one of the main ways that Macao Government Tourism Office (MGTO) plans to attract visitors and encourage them to stay longer.
A MGTO spokesperson commented: “Macau has been enhancing the city’s events, as well as ensuring they are distributed throughout the year, so that visitors may plan holidays to experience all these during their stay.”
MGTO, together with travel trade partners, has been leveraging event-themed packages, such as the Macau Grand Prix or the Macao International Marathon, as “windows for visitors to experience the destination”.
In line with MGTO’s efforts, integrated resorts (IRs) are also bringing to Macau “high-profile performances and events”.
“Some players bring big names from the regional and world entertainment industry, and stage resident shows for long seasons. Their calendar of performances usually comes along with special packages (that aim) for longer stays,” the MGTO spokesperson said.
Examples of shows currently running at IRs include the indoor ice sculpture showcase and other activities by Kung Fu Panda Adventure Ice World with the DreamWorks All-Stars at The Venetian (through July 9); magician shows scheduled for the House of Magic at Studio City (year-round); the Monkey King - China Show at Sands Cotai Theatre (through December 31).
“This favours not only the host hotel-resorts but the overall destination, since visitors also tend to visit other attractions while in town,” shared the MGTO spokesperson.
Echoing the sentiment that events across the city can bring collective benefits to the industry, Artyzen Hospitality Group, Macau, area vice president, Rutger Verschuren, said: “Considering how small Macau is, and the relative short time since we came on the international travel map, we cannot complain. We are lucky to benefit from Macau’s (events) treasure chest and its efforts to reach out to an international crowd.
“Our hotels, like the entire city, feast on large events by receiving more exposure as a destination, and by generating extra RevPAR during events,” he added.
Meanwhile, entertainment is at the heart of Sands China’s business. Its six venues have hosted a total of 60 different live entertainment events over 144 event days in 2016, attracting more than 228,000 visitors. The theatres offer a variety of ticketed events – everything from Broadway-style musicals to magic shows to classical ballet.
Said senior vice president of marketing and brand management, Ruth Boston: “The live entertainment programme at our properties is a key traffic driver... The diversity of entertainment offered by Sands Resorts Macao sets it apart from other gaming destinations.”
Welcoming Macau’s new positioning is Metropole Hotel’s general manager, May Wong, who looks forward to grow the vast potential in events tourism.
“Apart from local culture and customs, the city also celebrated Thailand’s Songkran Festival. Why don’t we expand in this direction by blending other nations’ festivals in addition to our homegrown ones?”
This article was first published in TTG Asia May 2017 issue. To read more, please view our digital edition or click here to subscribe.