PHUKET, February 1, 2011 — Phuket passenger traffic smashed all previous records with 3.5 million arrivals during 2010 – or 22% growth over the previous year – with new markets such as Russia and China emerging as the major drivers of growth.
According to a latest market research report, 2010 Phuket Hotel Market Update indicates annual tourism figures soundly recovered from early political angst to hit new highs.
Both Russia and China have emerged as star performers, with charter and direct flight capacity fast tracking growth.
The real storyline remains airlift as traffic surpassed 2007’s peak year by 19% with growth of 28% over 2009. China sprouted wings, ranking second overall among international source markets.
Both these clubs form part of the Golf in the Kingdom initiative, aimed at promoting some of Thailand’s most exciting golf courses and stunning hotels in the country of smiles.
Where as many international courses particularly in the States and Europe, have seen a fall in their annual turnover over the past year, income has seen a rapid increase at several of the islands golf courses.
According to Michael Brasier the club’s Professional ‘Red Mountain being relatively new to the island, had taken time to establish itself. Word of mouth however has at last started to pay off, and many of our first time golfers, come here with recommendations from fellow golfers.’
Hotels such as the Anantara and Hilton Phuket Arcadia Resort and Spa also report healthy increases, partly due to more direct flights arriving into Phuket International Airport. Tinidee Hotel @ Phuket, a new hotel adjacent to Loch Palm and close to Red Mountain is also experiencing excellent business from golfers, keen to stay near these courses.
Mark Siegel CEO at Golfasian said, ‘Overall inbound golfers to Thailand have increased in 2010, and Phuket is always a very popular golfing destination. With six top courses on the island it has definitely become a golfer’s paradise.’
With plans to expand capacity at the islands busy airport, Phuket’s popularity looks assured well into the future.