2014-07-04: Tourism Developers Salivate Over Plans to Exploit Lombok’s Virgin South

Tourism Developers Salivate Over Plans to Exploit Lombok’s Virgin South

Jakarta. A much anticipated hospitality forum attracting global investors and developers to ponder the future of Lombok tourism has ended with the minister for tourism and creative economy pledging support for what she called “Brand Lombok.”

Mari Elka Pangestu did not say precisely what that brand might be, but when she put the word and the island in the same sentence, her meaning was clear. “The vision shared by participants highlights the need for Lombok’s evolving tourism industry to thrive by adopting a sustainable approach and creating ‘Brand Lombok’.”

Another speaker chimed in: “Brands, both domestic and international, help legitimize a destination in the minds of the larger market,” said Matt Gebbie, Asia-Pacific director for the worldwide hospitality consultancy Horwath HTL. “A well-recognized brand associated with a resort development in a relatively new destination assists acceptance and alleviates quality concerns.”

Frans Teguh, director of destination design and tourism investment, noted that West Nusa Tenggara was already well on its way, recording “more than 11 percent of foreign direct investment in Indonesia in tourism in 2013. Current projects underway, and being planned, point only in one direction — up.”

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