Europeans who previously favoured the Spanish Costas can now snap up ten-day package deals to the Dominican Republic for EUR/USD 600, including flight, accommodation and free food and drinks. Once-popular hotels in Phuket are outdone by prettier, more exotic boutique resorts on even remoter islands. In such a radically changing market, many traditional resorts and hotels around the world find themselves desperately seeking new customers.

How convenient therefore, that citizens of quickly developing nations like China and Russia are now following in the footsteps of millions of Germans and Brits who invented mass tourism in the late sixties and early seventies.

Witness a true RESORT REBIRTH: 'forgotten' holiday destinations finding favour with new nations of tourists. Up to 1 million Chinese may spend their holiday in Thailand in 2003, often staying in low-cost hotels, while in 2001, about 850,000 Russians spent their summer holidays in Turkey and Spain.

As demonstrated by GLOBAL GARAGE SALES, the ongoing expansion of the world’s semi-middle classes offers the chance of a second youth for many established services and products in the industrialised world. >> Email this trend to a friend.


| More on China (a.k.a. the C in BRIC): what is it that emerging middle classes crave most after they've secured a decent house and a spanking new car? Yup, TRAVEL. So, with millions of consumers in major Chinese metropolitan areas having joined the MASS CLASS Walhalla, it should come as no surprise that Chinese tourism within China, to Hong Kong and to the rest of the world is booming. More than 16 million people traveled from mainland China last year, and this year that number is projected to rise by at least 18 percent -- the highest growth rate of any Asian nation, studies show.

Where are they all staying? Well, with Chinese incomes still modest compared to most developed nations, affordable two and three star resorts and hotels are most popular. Hence the rebirth taking place for many resorts and hotels once popular with Germans, Americans and Swedes. How big is the opportunity for REBORN RESORTS? Some numbers (source: Washington Post):

Chinese visitors now dominate or make up a large share of the tourist market in Hong Kong, Macau, Vietnam, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia.

Chinese government officials and businessmen routinely detour to Las Vegas and lose so much money that U.S. casinos like the MGM Grand, Harrah's, the Venetian, and Caesar's Palace have opened offices in China and are dispatching representatives to China to organize groups of high-stakes gamblers and attract more business. Casinos from South Korea, the Philippines, Australia and North Korea have followed suit.

By 2020, the World Tourism Organization has predicted, more Chinese tourists -- a massive 100 million -- will head overseas than tourists from any other country. They made up just 1 percent of the Australian tourism market in 1995; that figure is expected to rise to 25 percent by the end of the decade. The Honolulu Advertiser, Hawaii's leading daily newspaper, recently reported that China, not Japan, is the state's long-term hope of boosting its sagging travel industry.

Chinese are the top spenders in Macau, averaging USD 262 a day, despite government currency controls that limit the amount travelers can take out of China to USD 750. Each Chinese tourist in Hong Kong spends on average USD 650. More than 6.8 million Chinese came here last year, equal to the territory's native population. And the number of Chinese heading to Hong Kong is expected to skyrocket: as of this summer, the 80 million Chinese who live in Guangdong province, Beijing and Shanghai have, for the first time, been able to apply for individual Hong Kong tourist visas.

TRENDWATCHING.COM could actually see a double boom in REBIRTH RESORTS around the world: this is where PLANNED SPONTANEITY in prosperous, mature nations meets hundreds of millions of BRICsters demanding their right to at least one foreign vacation a year. And for those of you not in the hotel business: maybe you should be! >> Email this trend to a friend.