JOHOR BAHARU, Jan 15 (Bernama) -- About 700 hotel rooms with three-star ratings and above are required in Johor Baharu to accommodate an increasing number of tourist arrivals in the state.
Johor Tourism, Trade and Consumerism Committee chairman Datuk Tee Siew Kiong said currently, the city centre had 9,289 three-star and above hotel rooms and it could not accommodate the demand of foreign and local tourists.
"The lack of rooms in the city showed the tourism industry in Iskandar Malaysia especially in Johor Baharu is growing rapidly, especially with the existence of theme parks around the city," he told reporters after visiting the Swiss-Inn Hotel, here today.
The new hotel will provide 205 rooms of various sizes for two to six people depending on the size of the groups. The soft launching of the hotel is scheduled for tomorrow.
Tee hoped hotel owners in the city would be promoting tourism destinations in Johor through various methods including via its television in the room to increase the tourist arrivals in Johor.
Meanwhile, Tee said a discussion will be held with the State Housing and Local Government Committee chairman, Datuk Abd Latif Bandi regarding some house owners who turned their houses into homestay.
He said, the homestay concept offered accommodation services involving more than 10 traditional houses in a particular village and not only one house.
He said at the moment, 21 homestays around the state had been registered.
In another development, Tee said efforts in promoting Johor's tourism products to countries in the region would be intensified by the state government and also government and private agencies through the ASEAN Tourism Forum (ATF) 2016 in Manila, the Philippines, from Jan 18 to 24.
The delegation, led by Tee, will introduce a new icon and Johor tourism products through the 'Explore Johor' mission, which would be held a day before the ATF 2016 launching to attract tourist arrivals from the countries participating in the forum especially from the Philippines.
Based on the record, a total of 291,789 tourists from the Philippines had visited Johor from January to August last year with most of them visiting the theme parks in the city, he said.