Tue, Feb 06, 2018 - Page 12 News List

The Lalu Sun Moon Lake offers hopes to woo day-trippers

By Crystal Hsu  /  Staff reporter, in NANTOU COUNTY

The Lalu Sun Moon Lake (涵碧樓), one of the nation’s most popular luxury hotels, is seeking to increase its dining sales this year by reaching out to day-trippers who do not have the budget for an overnight stay.

The five-star resort overlooking Sun Moon Lake (日月潭) in Nantou County expects the strategy to boost the revenue from its restaurants from about NT$174 million (US$5.94 million) last year, food and beverage director Leslie Wang (王美玲) told the Taipei Times.

“In particular, we aim to grow sales by 30 percent at the Japanese restaurant that used to serve dinners only on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, but has recently added a weekend lunch menu for day-trippers,” Wang said on Friday last week.

The goal is achievable in light of the unfading attraction of Sun Moon Lake for domestic and foreign travelers.

It is the one of the most-visited spots in the nation together with Alishan (阿里山) in Chiayi County and Taroko Gorge (太魯閣) in Hualien County.

Since it opened in March 2002, the luxury 96-room resort hotel has grown into a landmark travel destination itself, thanks to its breathtaking views of the lake, The Lalu Sun Moon Lake general manager Stanley Cheong (張昌權) said.

The Lalu, which refers to a tiny island in the middle of the lake named by Thao (邵族) Aborigines, has most recently won three awards — most-favored lodging choice among business travelers, best facilities in Taiwan and one of the top 50 must-stay hotels in Greater China, the company said.

Day trips to the lake and hotel could prove popular with people who desire a taste of the luxury lifestyle while getting away from the hustle and bustle of the city, Wang said.

It takes only one hour to reach the hotel by bus from Taichung High Speed Rail Station, Wang said.

Day-trippers could lunch at The Lalu’s Japanese restaurant, where a seven-course meal costs NT$900 per person plus a 10 percent service charge, and then spend the afternoon biking around the lake or strolling around the hotel, Wang said.

Designed by Australian architect Kerry Kill, the boutique hotel has about 8,000 ping (26,690m2) of floor space.

Daily room rates averaged NT$15,000 last year, about the same as in 2016, as travelers from Southeast Asian nations increasingly fill the void left by the sharp decline in the numbers of Chinese tourists, Tourism Bureau data showed.

Domestic travelers account for the bulk of The Lalu’s clientele, making profits resilient, despite chilling cross-strait ties, the data showed.

Day-trippers could also opt to experience the hotel’s spa, where a classic 60-minute session to refresh their body, mind and soul costs NT$3,200, Wang said.

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