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Hong Kong Tourism Board to participate in 2005 WTM

The Hong Kong Tourism Board(HKTB) will take part in one of the world`s leading travel trade shows…

The Hong Kong Tourism Board(HKTB) will take part in one of the world`s leading travel trade shows, World Travel Market, in London this November. The decision to return to the event has been prompted by the HKTB`s forthcoming 2006 Discover Hong Kong Year campaign.

2006 Discover Hong Kong Year capitalises on the introduction of a number of new attractions and hotels , and also highlights some lesser-known aspects of the city, said Kevin Welch, the HKTB`s Regional Director – Europe, Africa & the Middle East. World Travel Market 2005 is particularly attractive because of the 2006 Discover Hong Kong Year campaign and the opportunity it provides us to reinforce our key marketing messages among a wide range of our international travel industry partners.

Fiona Jeffery, Group Exhibition Director of World Travel Market said she was delighted to welcome Hong Kong back to the event. This significant step taken by Hong Kong demonstrates the opportunities World Travel Market presents in promoting a new image for a leading tourism destination to a global business audience, she said.

While Hong Kong Disneyland, which opens on 12 September, is the best-known of Hong Kong`s new attractions, the Ngong Ping 360 and Hong Kong Wetland Park, which both begin operating in the first quarter of 2006, are also expected to attract significant numbers of international visitors.

Comprising a cable car ride with a 360-degree view of Lantau Island`s lush green hills, and a village combining cultural experiences with shops and restaurants, Ngong Ping 360 will offer a stunning new way to access Lantau Island`s popular Giant Buddha and Po Lin Monastery. The 64-hectare Hong Kong Wetland Park is situated in the New Territories, adjacent to the Mai Po Marshes, a vital resting and feeding ground for more than 300 species of birds, many endangered. The Wetland Park offers audio-visual shows, interactive displays and extensive wetland and outdoor exhibits.

Several major new hotels are also opening in the city. These include the Landmark Mandarin Oriental (August 2005), with 113 guest rooms and suites, and the Four Seasons Hotel (September 2005), which houses one of the world`s most luxurious health spas. Hong Kong Disneyland will also add to Hong Kong`s hotel capacity with two new properties: Hong Kong Disneyland Hotel and the showbiz-themed Disney`s Hollywood Hotel.

During 2006 Discover Hong Kong Year, the HKTB will also focus on Hong Kong`s lesser-known hidden treasures, which include traditional island life and a wide range of outdoor activities. A number of short, themed itineraries have been devised to showcase Hong Kong`s off-the-beaten-track villages and districts, local restaurants and shops, traditional temples and markets, as well as sites of historical and cultural significance.

The HKTB is also keen to highlight the fact that Hong Kong is more than just a city, with more than 260 islands, exceptional country parks such as Sai Kung, some of Asia`s best walking trails and activities such as golf, cycling, fishing, kayaking and horse-riding readily available.

The HKTB`s established programme of Mega Events, such as the International Chinese New Year Night Parade (29 January 2006) and the Hong Kong Shopping Festival, will continue to play a significant role in the HKTB`s marketing plans for 2006 Discover Hong Kong Year. New to the programme will be a culture and heritage festival in May 2006.

2006 is a critical milestone in the history of Hong Kong`s tourism industry, Mr Welch said. The new attractions and developments, coupled with the initiatives planned by the HKTB, offer a superb opportunity to entice new visitors to Hong Kong, and to persuade previous visitors that there is so much more for them to discover.

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