HONGKONG-The Hong Kong Tourism Board (HKTB) said that Indonesia remains its largest market in the South and Southeast Asia region, as the number of visitors grew 15 percent during 2011.
“There were 521,000 Indonesians visiting Hong Kong last year and we still see strong growth in 2012 from Indonesia,” HKTB regional director for Southeast Asia Simon Wong said in Jakarta on Tuesday.
He said that Indonesian tourist arrivals to Hong Kong had grown at twice the rate seen throughout the South and Southeast Asia regions. In total, there were 3.71 million South and Southeast Asian visitors in 2011, a 7.1 percent jump from 3.5 million in 2010.
“With a lot of attractions that we offer, including a wide variety of dining experience and shopping markets, more Indonesian visitors would love to come,” he said.He said that family attractions were important to Asian — especially Indonesian — visitors and that there would be a push to keep developing more theme parks and other resorts.
Hong Kong Disneyland, for instance, is undergoing a project to enlarge the existing theme park by about 23 percent and add more than 30 new attractions, bringing the total number of attractions in the park to over 100.
The latest theme park area to become a favorite with visitors was “Toy Story Land”, which was Asia exclusive, after commencing operations in November 2011, he said. In addition, Ocean Park, a popular marine theme park in Hong Kong, has added its latest attraction “The Thrill Mountain”, which opened in December last year.
He also said that tourism in Hong Kong in general was not affected by other attractions in Southeast Asia such as Singapore with its integrated resort and Universal Studios.“We will still see strong growth from visitors, especially from Asia, this year,” he said.
Even though the global economic downturn hit Europe, he said that Hong Kong still saw a jump in visitors last year.Based on HKTB data, there were 2.19 million visitors from Europe, Africa, and Middle East in 2011, a 0.9 percent increase from 2010.
In a separate interview, Twenty20 Tours director Tony Bogi said that Hong Kong was still one of Indonesian’s favorite destinations.“The atmosphere is different from Singapore, and that is the attraction of Hong Kong,” Tony said.
He said that people who went to Hong Kong always traveled in a groups of families and friends, and that the peak season was always during the school holidays.In total, 41.92 million tourists across the globe visited Hong Kong throughout 2011, a 16.4 percent increase from 2010.