Mon, Oct 12, 2009 - Page 12 News List

Hotels in southern Taiwan working hard to fill rooms

STAFF WRITER, WITH CNA

Hotel operators in the south are trying to cope with a slump in tourism by using online social networks such as Plurk and Facebook to advertise promotional offers.

Most hotels in the area have seen a significant drop in occupancy because of Typhoon Morakot in August and an apparent boycott by Chinese tourists following a visit to southern Taiwan by the Dalai Lama last month.

Su Hui-yun (蘇慧芸), a marketing executive at Hua Yuan Hotel (華園飯店) in Kaohsiung City, said yesterday that its occupancy rate had been about 50 percent recently.

The hotel is advertising on Plurk, which provides social networking and micro-blogging services, Su said. People who who send the hotel a plurk — short message — or blog via Plurk will have a chance to win a free three-day trip to Kaohsiung, Su said.

Kuo Shi-he (郭世和), a public relations executive at Chateau Beach Resort (夏都沙灘酒店) in Kenting, Pingtung County, said the hotel was able to maintain an occupancy rate of about 80 percent during the last quarter of last year because of the box-office hit Cape No. 7, which was set in the area. Its occupancy rate had fallen to around 50 percent since August of this year, Kuo said.

Caesar Park Hotel (凱撒大飯店) will launch a special stay one night, get a second night free offer next month.

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