Golden years of hospitality

Yasmin (centre, in blue) with Toh (to her left) during the cake cutting to mark the association’s golden jubilee.

Malaysian Association of Hotels (MAH) celebrated its golden jubilee with a gala dinner at a Kuala Lumpur hotel, bringing together 800 stakeholders in the hospitality sector.

It was also attended by Tourism Malaysia chairman Datuk Dr Yasmin Mahmood and director-general Manoharan Periasamy as guests of honour.

The event was infused with nostalgia, where guests were shown a video chronicling MAH’s 50-year journey, from its inception to the present.

In her speech, MAH president Datin Christina Toh expressed pride in the association’s long and illustrious history in shaping Malaysia’s hospitality sector.

“Today, we have over 1,000 members nationwide, partnering with both the private sector and government agencies to maintain a high quality of service.

“We thank everyone involved, as well as our past board members, for their contributions and good leadership that have brought our association to where it is today,” she said.

Yasmin: Malaysia hopes to welcome 27.3 million international tourists in 2024.Yasmin: Malaysia hopes to welcome 27.3 million international tourists in 2024.

Toh added that MAH was committed to meeting the demands of the hospitality sector.

As part of this effort, she said the association had prepared a series of events this year which included a domestic tourism fair with support from Tourism Malaysia.

Yasmin said tourism was a critical sector in Malaysia, having employed some 3.6 million people in 2022, equal to 23.4% of total employment.

She said the country hoped to welcome 27.3 million international tourists this year, above the pre-Covid-19 pandemic figure of 26.7 million.

“To realise this objective, the government has provided attractive incentives such as charter flight matching grant and Visa Liberalisation programme.

“On the domestic front, Tourism Malaysia is partnering with MAH on tourism fairs, expecting to attract 10,000 visitors with the aim of stimulating local tourism,” she said.

The gala saw four former MAH presidents – Tan Sri Azman Shah Haron, Datuk Mohd Ilyas Zainol Abidin, Datuk N. Subramaniam and Sam Cheah Swee Hee – honoured with Lifetime Achievement Awards for their role and contributions to the country’s hospitality sector.

There was also prize-giving for the MAH Management Grand Prix, a collaboration between MAH, Taylor’s University and Russell Partnership Technology.

The top four finishers among 16 teams that took part in the management simulation challenge received cash prizes.

The evening concluded with the MAH Hotel Employee Awards Recipients announcement.

Introduced in 2010, it recognises employees who exemplify the spirit of hospitality through their dedication and commitment.

Also present were MAH vice-president and organising chairman Shirley Lai, MAH former president Kamaruddin Baharin and Malaysian Association of Hotel Owners president Tan Sri Teo Chiang Hong.

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