Latest posts by Martin Moodie (see all)
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A warning to all delegates who are flying in this weekend – wrap up warm. It’s cold, very cold here, about 6 degrees below zero and it might dip further in coming days.
But don’t worry. The Korean welcome is warmer than the fieriest plate of kimchi you’ll ever have. Incheon International Airport Corporation’s (IIAC) Director of International Relations Mina Choi met me straight off the plane today, typifying the airport company’s incredibly efficient but ultra-friendly approach.
Like King Power International Group in Bangkok last year, IIAC is proving the perfect host. Nothing is too much trouble and they have thrown an army of management and employees at the task. Almost 500 people are now registered for the event, an incredible result, with a roughly 50-50% split between international and Korean delegates. There’s a real buzz in the Korean travel retail air – with the Chinese business surging, and the Korean and Japanese sectors still strong, this is one of the places to be for our industry.
Tonight I’m staying at my old haunt, the Hyatt Regency Incheon – to my mind one of the best airport hotels in the world. I’ve got meetings with IIAC in the morning and then it’s off to Seoul for meetings with Shilla and Lotte and preparation, lots of it, for the 2012 Trinity Forum.
It’s a nerve wracking but exciting time. The Trinity is my ‘baby’, something I proudly fathered long ago in 2003 based on a notion that the key stakeholders in our industry spent too much time as adversaries and not enough as partners.
The concept of ‘Trinity’ is now part of industry parlance. Equally it attracts its constant share of snipers. I actually think that’s a good thing. Big ideas were never advanced easily; never progressed without overcoming barriers. Trinity is not a model, it’s a forum to challenge and to advance our industry.
I look forward to seeing so many of our readers in Seoul over coming days. Fly safe. Fly warm.