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Holiday destinations in Pahang reopened under strict SOP, says tourism Exco - September 7, 2021

KUANTAN: Travelers and industry players are required to embrace "new normal" conditions as popular tourist destinations across Pahang began to resume operation in stages.

Pulau Tioman in Rompin, Fraser's Hill in Raub and Kampung Kuala Tahan near Taman Negara in Jerantut are among tourist spots which have opened their doors to visitors since early this month and more destinations are expected in the next few weeks.

State Tourism and Culture Committee chairman Datuk Seri Mohd Sharkar Shamsudin said the main priority is to ensure both visitors and tourism players remain safe by complying with the newly implemented standard operating procedures (SOP).

"There are no two ways about it as everyone has a responsibility to play and they must follow the strict measures which have been implemented. To make sure the industry survives, destinations will be reopened gradually and accordingly.

"So far there have been no reports of any new Covid-19 clusters (at tourist destinations) and it is vital to follow the SOP as any outbreak will jeopardise the industry. Both travelers and tour operators are aware of their responsibilities under the new normal which they need to put it into practice," he told reporters at the Pahang tourism office here today.

Sharkar was met after distributing Bantuan Prihatin Pahang (BPP) Covid-19 aid to 85 tour guides here today.

Meanwhile, he cited several examples on the tourism SOPs saying only those who have completed their Covid-19 vaccinations can travel and there is a limit on the number of travelers at certain destinations.

It was reported yesterday that visitors are slowly trickling back to several tourist destinations in Pahang and operators are hoping to see an increase in bookings ahead of the one-week school holidays which begins on Sept 11.

On tourist destinations in Pahang reopening business before other destinations, Sharkar said the priority is to see the tourism sector gradually returning to normal.

"It is not important to become the first (destination) to reopen but we are looking at the long term recovery. The idea is to slowly revive and get the industry back on track," he said.

Meanwhile, a Tourism Pahang officer, who declined to be named, said the tourism destinations in Pahang which began opening late last month currently offer limited activities.

"People within the state can travel and most destinations have resumed business. However, some activities including diving in Pulau Tioman or camping in Taman Negara will require approval from the National Security Council (NSC)," he said, adding the NSC is in the midst of studying the SOPs.

Eight destinations - Pulau Tioman and Taman Negeri Rompin (both in Rompin), Genting Highlands and Janda Baik (both in Bentong), Fraser's Hill( Raub), Taman Negara (Jerantut), Kuala Gandah National Elephant Conservation Centre (Temerloh) and Cameron Highlands - have achieved herd immunity against Covid-19. Source: NST

Rebranding floating raft houses as 'Rakitstay' good idea, says tourism Exco - August 25, 2021

KUANTAN: Floating raft houses, rebranded as "Rakitstay", has the potential to bolster the tourism sector in Pahang. Describing the rebranding as a good move, state Tourism and Culture Committee chairman Datuk Seri Mohd Sharkar Shamsudin (BN-Lanchang) said the Tourism, Arts and Culture Ministry (Motac) was still studying the newly-coined "Rakitstay" brand. "Motac is responsible to recognise alternative accommodation facilities besides hotels, chalets, resorts and homestay. However, to date, we have yet to obtain any approval from the ministry.

"The idea to rebrand floating raft houses as "Rakitstay" is certainly a good effort and will be referred to the local authorities, and other agencies related to the guidelines for accommodation premises," he said when replying to a question from Mujibur Rahman Ishak (Pas-Chenor) during the question and answer session at the state assembly today. Mujibur was seeking an explanation if the state government offered allocations for the floating raft house operators rebranded as "Rakitstay" to accelerate domestic tourism.

Meanwhile, Sharkar described the rebranding exercise as vital in tourism, saying it will help the respective destinations gain popularity and attract holidaymakers. "We have Menara Kuantan 188 in Kuantan; Raub is popular for Musang King durian variety; while Bentong has Genting Highlands and Janda Baik....this is all about rebranding to attract more visitors. "Previously, we had homestay units and now we have Rakitstay where holidaymakers can experience staying on a floating house along the river," he said, adding there were about 50 registered floating raft houses operating at Sungai Rompin and Sungai Pontian in Rompin. Meanwhile, State Agriculture, Agro-Based Industry and Biotechnology committee chairman Datuk Seri Mohd Soffi Abd Razak (BN-Benta) said the state government has no plans to build a udang galah (giant freshwater prawn) sanctuary in Rompin.

Replying to a question from Razali Kassim (BN-Muadzam Shah), he said setting up a sanctuary which offers protection and conservation would require a huge commitment. "The sanctuary will have strict guidelines and locals will no longer be able to freely carry out prawn fishing activities. It will require everyone in the community including fishermen to avoid posing any threats including overfishing and causing environmental threats. "If the Fisheries Department plans to build a prawn sanctuary then it has to carry out detailed research and study the proposal from all aspects. This is to ensure the sanctuary remains in operation for long," he said.

 

Eight holiday destinations in Pahang ready to welcome tourists - August 19, 2021

ROMPIN: Eight tourist destinations across Pahang are ready to reopen their doors to visitors, pending the green light from the National Security Council (NSC). Tourism Pahang general manager Kamaruddin Ibrahim said the chosen holiday spots which have achieved herd immunity against Covid-19 will be reopened to visitors in stages. "Since inter-district travel is allowed, people in Pahang can now travel to the tourist destinations but they will not be able to participate in any outdoor or leisure activities. For example, those who have acompleted two vaccine doses can board the ferry to Pulau Tioman but they cannot go out snorkeling and scuba diving...they will be forced to remain in their chalets or hotels. 

"To date, eight tourist destinations are prepared to reopen and receive visitors. The operators have provided the standard operating procedures(SOPs) to be studied and agreed by the NSC. To avoid emergence of tourism clusters, the opening of the eight destinations will be done in stages," he told reporters at Dewan Kuala Rompin near here today. Kamaruddin was met after accompanying Tioman assemblyman Datuk Seri Mohd Johari Hussain to distribute Bantuan Prihatin Pahang (BPP) Covid-19 aid to 107 boat operators and tour guides here. The eight destinations which are prepared to open their doors to tourists are Pulau Tioman and Taman Negeri Rompin (both in Rompin), Genting Highlands and Janda Baik (both in Bentong), Fraser's Hill( Raub), Taman Negara (Jerantut), Kuala Gandah National Elephant Conservation Centre (Temerloh) and Cameron Highlands.

Meanwhile Kamaruddin said the tourism SOPs at holiday destinations under the new normal will no longer allow the maximum number of occupants staying in one room or travelling on a passenger boat. "There will be a limit on the number of participants in all the activities both indoor and outdoor, and this is to avoid overcrowding. We will no longer follow the boat capacity but set a limit to adhere to the new SOPs.

"Everything will be done systematically and will be well-planned....from the time visitors arrive at their destination until they leave. Tourists will be required to register in advance, confirm their accommodation and equipment rental," he said. Meanwhile, Johari, who is also the State Human Resource, Sports and Non-governmental Organisation (NGO) committee chairman said Pulau Tioman was expected to be reopened for visitors before the end of this month.

"We hope to open the island before the monsoon season which is expected to hit in late October. Ninety-five per cent of the island's population rely on tourism as a source of income including boat, chalet and tour operators. "Tioman used to receive about 200,000 visitors a year but now due to the pandemic, no one is going there anymore. Plans to reopen the island were discussed during the Pahang executive council meeting yesterday so we hope it can be made a reality soon," he said.

Source: NST

#JOM GO: Intra-state holidays for Pahang folks - August 25, 2021

Pahang is ready to open eight of its holiday destinations, here's a list of lodgings worth checking out. PEOPLE in Pahang can now look forward to that much needed holiday, albeit just intra-state trips at selected destinations, once they receive the green light from the National Security Council (NSC). Once approved, eight of the state's tourist destinations which have achieved herd immunity against Covid-19 — Pulau Tioman, Taman Negeri Rompin, Genting Highlands, Janda Baik, Fraser's Hill, Taman Negara, Kuala

Gandah National Elephant Conservation Centre and Cameron Highlands — will begin to welcome back visitors in stages to minimise the emergence of tourism clusters.

PULAU TIOMAN

If you've been missing the laid-back beach life, 1511 Coconut Grove is your chance to (safely) indulge in your island fantasies. Located in Juara Village on Tioman Island, the boutique hotel offers guests quaint chalets inspired by traditional village architecture, complete with thatched roofs and raised wooden stilts, which overlook pristine sandy white beaches. As the property is situated at the eastern part of the island, guests will be at the perfect spot to take in gorgeous sunrise views. 

TAMAN NEGERI ROMPIN

Situated along a beach-front facing the South China Sea, and complete with the lush greenery of its own golf course, Lanjut Beach & Golf Resort combines seaside serenity with the best of the tropical greenery. Each of its rooms comes with a private balcony, facing either the vast blue ocean or the property's own expansive swimming pool. The resort is also located near Kampung Lanjut, a village renowned for its seafood delights, particularly freshwater prawns. With the resort's peaceful environment, guests rate it as an ideal place to simply enjoy the ocean breeze in comfort. 

GENTING HIGHLANDS

One of the most highly rated properties in the area, the Swiss-Garden Hotel & Residences Genting Highlands promises a stylish staycation for discerning travellers. The hotel is situated near the peak of Genting Highlands, giving guests majestic views of the lush green surroundings, particularly from the rooftop sanctuary on the 41st floor. The property also features an array of top-notch hospitality facilities and services, including a heated swimming pool, jacuzzi and sauna rooms, as well as a variety of local and international cuisines at its on-site cafe.

JANDA BAIK

Tucked away in the tranquil forests of Janda Baik, Cherengin Hills Convention & Spa Resort's hillside accommodation is an easily-accessible getaway for urbanites seeking to escape the hustle and bustle of the city. While the resort was a popular venue for team building activities during pre-pandemic days, it still has plenty to offer with its peaceful surroundings, cool weather, and breathtaking rainforest views. With rooms that come equipped with modern amenities, guests will be able to sample nature without sacrificing contemporary comforts.

FRASER'S HILL

Perched atop the famous hill it's named after, Shahzan Inn Fraser's Hill is ideal for travellers who value privacy and peace above all else. The budget hotel is rated highly among guests for its value for money and convenient location, making it a good place for a quick and quiet escape. Known for its thriving biodiversity, Fraser's Hill is also home to a myriad of local and migratory bird species — an ideal environment for budding birdwatchers to spot interesting and colourful wildlife.

TAMAN NEGARA

Looking for an experience right in the heart of nature, or simply wishing for a more thrilling escapade away? Mutiara Taman Negara Resort, located smack in the middle of the rainforest reserve of Taman Negara, will give you a bit of both. Nature-lovers can enjoy the sights and sounds of the jungle within the resort itself — be prepared to spot other wildlife "guests" such as monkeys and lizards making their way around the premises. This property also features a wide range of accommodation choices, from resort-style chalets to simple bungalows, allowing guests to choose just how rustic and close-to-nature they want their stay to be.

KUALA GANDAH NATIONAL ELEPHANT CONSERVATION CENTRE

With its impeccable hospitality service and award-winning spa treatments, the Chateau Spa & Organic Wellness Resort has been long known as a staycation option for Malaysians. This luxurious property is situated 2,700 feet above sea level; meaning that you can take in cool, crisp highland air and green views of sloping hills without leaving your plush room. While the hotel is French-inspired, with its castle like structure and French fine dining cuisine, it also offers guests a taste of Eastern serenity in the zen-like gardens at its Japanese Village. 

CAMERON HIGHLANDS

Tourists have historically flocked Cameron Highlands for a brief respite from the heat of the tropics. An interesting property here is Hotel De'La Ferns, which offers guests a taste of the colonial hill stations of yore with its modern twist on Tudor-styled architecture. Aptly named after the expansive ferns found in the area, the hotel also boasts of picturesque views of the mountainous countryside. 

Prefer a stay closer to the city centre? Located in the town of Brinchang, Zetter Suites gives guests both convenience and comfort with a hint of Victorian-era sensibilities. These private apartment units come with Victorian-inspired furnishing in soft, pastel tones, creating a romantic setting for couples. 

For more exciting and SOP-compliant travel ideas, head on over to Agoda. Spontaneous travellers can take advantage of Agoda's GoLocal Tonight deals, which feature special travel and accommodation offers for immediate travel plans. Travellers can also be assured of a safe stay by checking for the HygienePlus verification feature, which lists the safety and hygiene measures taken by accommodation providers.

Tropicana completes land acquisition in Genting Highlands - August 16, 2021

Tropicana Corp Bhd has completed the acquisition of a plot of freehold land measuring 84 hectares (ha) next to its Tropicana Grandhill property project in Bentong, Pahang. Its wholly-owned indirect subsidiary, Tropicana Inspirasi Indah Sdn Bhd (formerly known as Snowflakes Realty Sdn Bhd) last week paid the balance purchase consideration for the acquisition of the land from Emerald Hectares Sdn Bhd. In a filing with Bursa Malaysia on Friday, Tropicana said that the status for the proposed acquisition of another plot of freehold land measuring about 41.6ha remains unchanged. 

Tropicana is buying the other plot of land from Satria Sewira Sdn Bhd for RM178.16 million. It paid RM224.33 million to acquire the land from Emerald Hectares. Satria Sewira and Emerald Hectares are both wholly-owned subsidiaries of YTL Land and Development Bhd.

YTL Corp Bhd managing director Datuk Yeoh Seok Kian and YTL Corp executive director Datuk Yeoh Soo Min are the directors of both Satria Sewira and Emerald Hectares.The two plots of land are situated within a short distance to Awana Genting Highlands Golf and Resort, Genting Highland Premium Outlet, and Awana Skyway and this augurs well for the proposed development of the said land parcels, said Tropicana.

According to the company, there are several successful developments nearby, such as Windmill Upon Hills, Vista Residence, Geo 38, Midhills, and the upcoming Pavilion Genting Highlands project. Last month Tropicana told the stock exchange it planned to buy the two plots of land to expand its landbank and enhance its property development profile in Genting Highlands.

The company is planning a mixed development on the two plots of land to complement its ongoing Tropicana Grandhill project. Tropicana Grandhill is a 45.3ha freehold mixed development, which has a potential gross development value (GDV) of up to RM15 billion. The developer acquired the land for RM78.3 million in 2018. Tropicana Grandhill comprises residential and commercial properties, a wellness and education centre, and a park.

Source: NST

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