Vientiane gets welcome mat ready for 25th SEA Games

Posted by samakomlao Sunday, June 7, 2009

Vientiane authorities are readying accommodation, food and tourism services for guests and athletes visiting Laos for the 25th SEA Games in December.

The capital will provide accommodation for about 4,000 athletes, and is making sure international-standard hotels and top end guesthouses are ready for visitors.

The Vientiane Tourism Department held a meeting at the National Culture Hall on Friday to discuss the preparations, as well as public security and public health.

The meeting was attended by Vice Vientiane Mayor and Vice President of the Lao SEA Games Organising Committee (LAOSOC), Mr Somvandy Nathavong, LAOSOC officials and staff from the department, hotels and guesthouses.

Mr Somvandy asked businesses to help in providing accommodation, food and tourism service during the games, which he said was a historical event for Laos .

He said Laos was satisfied its political stability would enable sound public security.

The Tourism Department has asked for more than 2 billion kip to redecorate and clean accommodations and provide food and tourism services.

Officials will check 12 hotels to make sure their standards are adequate. Hotels in five districts are still under construction but will be finished before the games. Officials will also inspect athletes' accommodation at the National University of Laos.

They will hold a meeting for businesses to respond to the call to support the SEA Games' effort and will continue checks of hotels and guesthouses for VIP guests, to be conducted by the Lao National Sports Committee and sports federation officials.

The Tourism Department will publish a Vientiane Tourism Guide Book and will hold two training courses for management staff in hotels, guesthouses and restaurants.

Hotels, guesthouses and restaurants in Vientiane will all be spruced up, with staff to wear traditional costumes to welcome guests and put Lao culture on display.

All sports venues, hotels, guesthouses, tourist facilities and other places will be tightly secured.

Public health officials will promote the need for cleanliness and hygiene and check the food provided by hotels, guesthouses, restaurants and markets in Vientiane for athletes and visitors.

Mr Somvandy said the games offered a good opportunity to develop human resources and businesses and for the Lao people to receive foreign guests.

He was confident the services offered would be up to international standards.

He advised business operators to take advantage of the event by putting up the price of rooms in hotels and guesthouses and raising meal prices.

The games represented the work of the Lao people and they should unite in hosting the event, he said.

The health unit would award certificates to restaurants if it could be determined they cooked clean food. Public health officials said they lacked money to buy some of the equipment they needed to carry out their work.

By Sangkhomsay Bubphanouvong

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