Clear blue waters and the town of Mauritius with a population of 1.34 million across mixed cultures
Set in the middle of the Indian Ocean, the luxurious and exotic island of Mauritius boasts a range of natural wonders: white sand beaches, lagoons, sugarcane fields, and vibrant green endemic forests. As one of the most developed nations in the region, Mauritius positions itself as the gateway to Africa. Tourism remains one of the main economic pillars of the island, and handy is currently launched in over 40 hotels, including some of the most iconic properties. We catch up with Karen King, Manager of the Indian Ocean to discuss the island’s tourism growth and its valued partnership with handy.
Mauritius is expected to have a 6% increase in tourism growth in 2018. What might be the causes of this rise?
Tourism numbers are expected to rise to an estimated 1,425,000 visitors in 2018 from 1,360,000 in 2017. A few factors contributing to the growth include encompassing local developments and overseas sentiments drawing greater international travelers. Most influential is the launch of newly operated flights—flying direct: Saudi Airlines, KLM, Turkish Airlines, and Lufthansa. To continue bringing new concepts to the guest experience, many local hotels have also renovated and rebranded for a fresh look.
Europe, one of the island’s major tourist markets, affected the number of visitors to the Mauritius positively due to its recent economic stability. The local government has also focused on bringing more cruise lines to the island.
Le Morne Brabant Mountain located on the south-west of Mauritius is a 2008 Unesco Cultural Heritage site
Is there a demand for technology like handy on the island?
Yes! Key industry stakeholders have shown great interest in implementing handy in their properties. Many of the island’s local groups have already started using handy and during the first 6 months, we have already penetrated over 30% of the market. Hotels realize that it is important for them to stay on top of digital innovations with new technologies available, in order to maintain a competitive edge.
Typical Mauritian shop front in Mahebourg, south-eastern Mauritius
How important are local partnerships for handy?
Local Mauritian groups contribute a considerable amount to the island’s tourism industry. As a small island, everything in Mauritius is very interrelated and connected. Industry groups often meet, staying up-to-date with the latest news in the tourism sector. To foster these local partnerships, handy has since partnered with the Mauritius Tourism Promotion Authority (MTPA) and Association of Tourism Professionals (ATF) to become a key contender for travel technology on the island.
Mauritius is a small island of 1.34 million people with a tight tourism network. How do you think this peaceful resort destination can benefit from handy?
Tourism is of great importance to the Mauritian economy. Hotels seek to implement new technology and handy adds that extra touch with a new unique selling point they can promote in marketing promotions and social media.
handy comes at an instance when the hotel industry in Mauritius is fruitful, with many hotels experiencing growth. Mauritius’ tight network is valuable to extending the handy experience and value throughout the local community, leaving room for exploration that further sets handy apart from other solutions on the market.
Gunners ‘Quoin also known as Coin de Mire was a sugar plantation set up by Dutch Settlers in 1598
Mauritius has cleverly positioned itself as a luxury destination that has protected the industry from falling tourist numbers during tough economic times. Can you share with us how handy caters to all travel markets, from midrange to luxury?
handy works with all different types of hotels to cater to the mass, affordable luxury and ultra luxury markets. And tying all travelers together is the desire for connectivity—handy provides that. Tapping into truly hassle-free travel, handy can be used to explore the island in-destination, stay in touch with family and friends, and connect to the hotel with greater ease and convenience. Hotels understand the growing needs of travelers and that when fully taken advantage of, not only travelers will enjoy the benefits of having handy available at their property.
For luxury properties, handy provides value-added services that personalize guest experiences on a more elevated level. Emerging as the expected standard for all future luxury properties, handy continues to add value even on the most basic level. For mid range properties, this means providing the expected necessity of free internet as a modern function. Adding to this, handy enhances everyday practicalities that are becoming the new norm in travel: free local and international calls, navigation capabilities and personalized notifications that streamline smarter communication.
Ile aux Cerfs island aka deer island coined by the rich habitat of deers back in the day