Not too long ago, the fortunes of Macau, the ‘Chinese Las Vegas’, were looking shaky. In January 2016, the Wall Street Journal described how the ‘odds were long for a Macau recovery’, yet just over a year later, Motley Fool described growth in the former Portuguese colony as ‘full steam ahead’ after an eighth straight month of growth, with revenue in March jumping by 18.1% year on year.
Part of the problem for the city, was the combination of a slowdown in the Chinese economy and a clampdown by the authorities on corruption and conspicuous displays of wealth by China’s elite. However, Macau has got around this by broadening its appeal to a wider audience, both across Asia and in the wider world, using the latest technology to tempt them in.
For example, this month, it will play host to the PokerStars Championships for the first time, attracting players from around the world to play for the big money pots. It is also becoming a major venue for the MICE (Meeting, Incentive, Conference and Exhibition) industry, where players are always looking for somewhere new and unusual to attract companies, delegates, and visitors.
An essential part of the push to attract event planners has been the introduction of state of the art software at some of the top hotels. The Sheraton Grand Macao Hotel and the St Regis Macao have both introduced eVent Portfolio – a comprehensive event planning tool, which is available free to organizers.
The first software of its kind in the region, eVent Portfolio is a web-based system that organizes everything for the modern event, keeping it all together in one place behind a simple, intuitive user interface. Organized and systematic, the event software manages all the diverse aspects of event management and coordinates with the hotel systems to confirm bedroom, conference room and exhibition hall bookings.
The software can be used on a Mac or a PC, and being web-based, can also be accessed via smartphones and tablets when events managers are on the move.
One advantage the eVent has over existing events management system is a built-in sustainability tracker. This special feature allows event planners to track how environmentally friendly their conference or exhibition is, in terms of key indicators such as energy use or paper waste. Such elements might seem incidental when organizing a huge international conference, but with modern companies under pressure from shareholders and customers alike to show their green credentials, the system is essential for proving corporate social responsibility.
“The system will kick off a new ear of mobile event planning that centers around going green,” explained Daniella Tonetto, sales and marketing manager at the two hotels. “eVent Portfolio is a game-changing tool.”
Macau has always been an innovator, especially in the gaming industry, as they proved at last year’s Global Gaming Expo, where they unveiled technology such as robot croupiers and even a craps table that shakes the dice for you.
With fortunes on the rise for the former colony, who knows what they will come up with next as they battle with Las Vegas to become the favorite playground of the world’s high rollers.
Stay tuned for the updates.
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