Thailand opens first Halal Hotel in Bangkok Thailand is rated as one of the top most visited tourist destination in Southeast Asia; owing to its tropical beaches, ancient monuments and diverse landscape. However, despite its diversity and modernity the city has till date fell short in attracting tourists from the Middle-East; who are predominantly Muslim.
Statistics dictate that as many as 30 million foreign tourist visited Thailand in 2015, out of which only about 658,000 were from the Middle East.
The reason behind these figure could possibly be the fact – That a major point of concern for all Muslim travelers is the availability of Halal food. And Thailand inhabiting a dominant Buddhist population has not been able to adequately cater this requirement in the past. However the 4 star Al-Meroz Hotel in Bangkok, which opened last November, has attempted to cover up the void in facilities for Muslims tourists.
The idea behind the hotel is to attract the huge population of 1.6 billion Muslims from around the world by accommodating them in accordance to their religious and social needs. The General Manager of Al-Meroz Sanya
Saengboon commented on this development as;
“There are 1.6 billion Muslims in the world. It’s a huge market. Just one percent of that market is enough for us to thrive.”
So far the Al Meroz hotel accommodates Muslim guests with 2 prayer rooms and 3 dining halls. Rooms at La-Meroz cost between 4,000 baht to 50.000 baht (That’s about $116 to $1,445 a night) reported Sanya.
For the past few years Thailand seems particularly enthusiastic in attracting the Muslim population into their country – To untap the huge market they hold; one that has been minimally explored in the past.
Last year they also went ahead and launched an exclusive mobile app for Muslims. To help them locate Halal restaurants conveniently; so that they wouldn’t be forced to become vegan while they were there.
The fact that such a well established tourist destination as Thailand has gone ahead and made the effort to accommodate Muslim tourists, definitely deserves a round of applause. It’s gratifying to see that our brethren from around the world recognize and respect our religious principles and are willing to make the effort to shift their system and norms to facilitate us; even if it is done for monetary gains.
Thailand is recognized all around the world for its breath-taking beaches and historical monuments. Their efforts have enabled Muslims to no longer cross out the country as a possible place to visit for their honeymoon or holiday; which is a great step forward!