The Guam Visitors Bureau recently presented at the Tourism EXPO Japan in Osaka-Kansai.
An estimated total of 150,000 attendees within the 4-day expo stormed the halls of the INTEX Osaka excited to visit the various displays and destination booths. Approximately 1,275 companies and organizations from 70 countries and regions participated in the event.
This is the first time in 4 years the event was held in Osaka-Kansai under the theme of “Open The Door To The Future”. The first two days of the expo were trade days for industry professionals. Here GVB members (Baldyga Group, Crowne Plaza Resort Guam, T Galleria by DFS, Dusit Thani Resort Guam, Dusit Beach Resort Guam, Guam Plaza Resort, Guam Premier Outlets, Japan Guam Travel Association, Joe’s Jet Ski, LeoPalace Resort Guam, Lotte Hotel Guam, Pacific Island Holidays, LLC, Royal Orchid Hotel Guam, Skydive Guam and United Airlines) and GVB staff met with various travel agents and trade professionals regarding future business collaborations.
Guam is expected to receive group travels by this month and anticipates its first large MICE group to visit in January 2024 with over 3,000 participants. The GOGO Guam! Hafa Adai’s campaign will definitely come in time to complement these upcoming group travels.
On day three (the first consumer day), broadcast professional and local news talk radio personality, Ray Gibson, opened the show at the Guam booth, welcoming attendees and setting the stage for the plethora of activities to come. While in Osaka, Mr. Gibson also hosted a live broadcast on his morning daily radio show “The Point” interviewing GVB President & CEO, Carl T.C. Gutierrez, as well as Quentin Koch, President and General Manager of Blue Hawaiian Helicopters and former United Airlines Director of Sales (Micronesia), who was also an active industry member, resident and friend of Guam.
Also featured were GVB Board Director, Mayor Robert Hofmann, and Mayors’ Council of Guam (MCOG) Executive Director, Angel Sablan. Hofmann and Sablan were on hand to support the delegation and also meet with sister city representatives who attended the expo. Guam’s culture, cuisine, beauty, and overall attractiveness were thoroughly displayed as visitors were able to experience activities set to tantalize the senses.
Performing multiple shows with interactive activities at both the Guam booth and the main stage was the Guam CHamoru Dance Academy – Guma Taotao Kina’hulo Atdao Na’ Tano led by Ms. Asami Nohira. Expo attendees were also treated to a culinary delight as Guam Månnge’ CHamoru food truck served up tinaktak burgers and barbeque chicken with red rice plates. Another highlight at the Guam pavilion was the artwork by manga artist and illustrator, TSUNOGAI, who showcased his tropical and summer-related works with Guam as the theme.
In 2023, he held a two-month-long solo exhibition tour in Guam at the Grand Plaza Hotel and has plans to do more in the near future. “We are very proud of the hard work and dedication our GVB team, local partners, and overall delegation showcased at this expo,” stated GVB President and CEO, Carl T.C. Gutierrez.
“Guam was well received and the attendees truly felt our warm ‘Hafa Adai’ spirit. I want to personally thank our GVB members in attendance, your commitment to destination Guam and revitalizing the Japanese market is truly commendable.
“My deepest thanks as well to Mayor Hofmann and Angel Sablan for their time and efforts to help strengthen our sister city ties and their overall support for our team and mission. Last, but not least, my heartfelt appreciation goes out to our GVB team and our marketing representative office, Shintsu SP, for their continuous devotion to Guam and dedication to rebuilding and reigniting our Japan market.”
Next year’s travel tour expo will be held at the Tokyo Big Sight – Japan from September 26-29, 2024.