A Grand Opening For Thailand

The Tourism Authority of Thailand celebrated the opening of is first dedicated Toronto office in grand fashion Monday night.

The TAT, which has previously had its Canadian representatives working from home, has now opened a downtown Toronto office and marked the occasion with a lively grand opening last night.

“We hope to work closely with travel agents,” Yuthasak Supasorn, governor of the tourism authority, told Press Today. “We can work more closely with Canadian entrepreneurs.”

Thailand last year saw 258,392 Canadians visit the country and Supasorn said the tourism authority hopes to see that figure reach 300,000 within three years.

Much of Thailand’s tourist trade revolves around its famed beaches but Supasorn said the predominantly Buddhist country can offer Canadians “unique local experiences.”

First-time visitors generally visit the likes of Bangkok, Chiang Mai and popular beach resorts like Pattaya or Phuket. But Supasorn said visits to “secondary provinces” can provide tourists with interesting experiences as well. “If you love Chiang Mai, you’ll love Chiang Rai.”

Thailand doesn’t now have direct air ties with Canada but Supasorn said the tourism authority is talking with Air Canada about possible Bangkok service.

Thai Airways may restart United States service as well, he continued.

The evening was also told by Miss Universe Canada Lauren Howe – who’s visited Thailand – that the country “offers some of the greatest variety you can imagine.”

Seen in the photo are: Kayla Shubert from the Toronto office of the tourism authority; Alan Law of GLP Worldwide; Supasorn; Howe; and Jessica Chu of GLP Worldwide.