With China and the rest of the region now fully open, the prospects
for the MICE industry looks more promising than ever. Choo Leng Goh,
general manager at The Athenee Hotel in Bangkok, talks to M&C Asia
about short lead times and meeting client expectations in a new business
1. What’s your outlook for MICE business at The Athenee Hotel, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Bangkok this year?
are looking into 2023 very positively when it comes to MICE business,
albeit with a word of caution. We continue to see shorter lead times for
a variety of sizes of groups, so speed to market and being easy to do
business with is key to converting business.
We are very fortunate that The Athenee Hotel, Bangkok has some of the
largest and most diverse spaces in Bangkok, and with more clients
looking for something different we are able to meet and exceed those
I hope flight capacity continues to recover quickly and with more
flights from China and Thai Airways increasingly flying again, this will
help keep Thailand’s value for money amongst the best in the world.
Hotel rates in other destinations have rocketed, but Thailand overall is
recovering at a more steady pace. But with China opening up, my top
tip for any booker would be to firm up your plans as soon as possible.
Both availability and increasing prices could affect those booking last
Hotel rates in other destinations have rocketed, but Thailand overall is recovering at a more steady pace.
2. What new plans or initiatives do you have in store to grow MICE business at your property?
are in a unique position. As a Luxury Collection hotel, we offer
benefits such as a Royal Club Lounge and 24-hour butler service. And as a
leading MICE hotel in Bangkok with 30 meeting and event venues and
outdoor spaces, anything is possible here. Combined with Marriott Bonvoy
Events, planners and guests can take advantage of truly unique
benefits. For example, last year we hosted Manchester United during
their pre-season tour and our guests had the opportunity to join a
member event with Marriott Bonvoy moments.
As we continue to differentiate ourselves in product and in service,
our commitment to sustainability has never been stronger. I expect this
to keep being a driver behind many companies selecting their hotels for
Even during the recent challenging years, we never stopped developing
and investing in our efforts, from digital contracting with our MICE
partners to hydroponic coffee breaks, adding to our award-winning sustainable events practices.
3. What are you most excited as well as concerned about in the months ahead?
am really excited about using all we have learned over the last three
years, and putting them into action as business returns at record
levels. We talked a lot about ‘right-sizing’, flexible working,
productivity and equality – in summary investing in our people in many
ways; now we need to ensure we keep leading on these initiatives as we continue to deliver award-winning service.
I wouldn’t say I have any concerns that are under my control. There
will always be external factors including inflation, talent recruitment
and even recession, but I always focus on what we can control, and
ensure we are set-up and prepared to succeed no matter what comes our