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Tue, 6 July 2021

How's Business in Laos? Interview with Hotelier and MD of EXO Travel Laos, Duangmala Phommavong

For years, the beautiful landlocked country of Laos has relied on the undeniable strength of Thailand's marketing skills, and the fact that Bangkok has long been a major transit hub for backpackers and students heading to Australia and New Zealand on their year off, to boost its tourism industry.

As such, Laos has often been sold as a +1 destination with people spending the majority of their time in places like Samui and Chiang Mai before heading over the border into Laos for a short stay.

Once there, Laos has a lot of things to do and see. Some of the country's most famous destinations include Champasak, Luang Prabang - an UNESCO World Heritage Centre, Pakse, Savannakhet, Vang Vieng, and of course, Vientiane - the capital city.

Parasol Blanc in Luang Prabang, Laos. Click to enlarge.

But how has the country been impacted by the ongoing global COVID19 pandemic, how has it targeted and developed the domestic market, what is happening with hotels in Laos, and how is the country planning to reopen for tourists?

Those are just some of the many questions Steven Howard of TravelNewsAsia.com puts to Duangmala Phommavong, a hotelier and Managing Director of EXO Travel Laos.

In this interview, filmed via Skype on 1 July, Duangmala gives us an idea of what is happening in Laos, what she has done with the two hotels - Villa Maly and Parasol Blanc [pictured above] - that she owns in Luang Prabang, and what role the growing middle class in the country have played in helping to develop the domestic tourism market.

We also talk about aviation, hotel development, and Laos' reliance on Thailand's appeal as a tourist destination. All that and much, much more in the video and podcast below.

How's Business in Laos? Interview with Hotelier and MD of EXO Travel Laos, Duangmala Phommavong

PODCAST

Editor's note: As the above video interview was conducted over the internet, I would like to apologise that the audio and visual quality are not up to the same HD/UHD quality that it normally would be. Hopefully it won't be too long until we are once again conducting exclusive video interviews more frequently and in person, but for now we have to make do with what we have. Thank you.

See also: Churning a Dream into Reality - Interview with CEO of Laos Buffalo Dairy, Susie Martin.

See latest Travel Industry News, Video Interviews, Podcasts and other news regarding: Laos, Lao.

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