Innovation That Matters

Table-top tourist board | Update

Travel & Tourism

Back in 2002, we reported on a Thai government initiative to launch a chain of over 3,000 Thai restaurants across the world, promoting both the country and its cuisine. That plan fizzled out after elections brought on a new government with different priorities. A recent spotting from Japan proves the idea can work, if on a slightly smaller scale. Sponsored by Tourism New Zealand and Air New Zealand, the New Zealand Travel Café opened in Tokyo’s Roppongi district three months ago. The café serves New Zealand burgers, beer and wine in an upmarket setting. Kiwi music plays in the background, a small shop sells NZ products and visitors can browse travel guides and brochures. Travel Café, which operates 20 themed cafés across Japan, also runs a branch in cooperation with the Philippine tourist board. The Philippine Travel Café serves ‘images of Philippine leisure resorts and tasty Filipino cuisine’. Maybe the Thai government can breathe new life into its old plan, working with the Travel Café this time. In other countries, we could see the Costa Rican tourism board working with Starbucks, or the Italians teaming up with Café Nero. If you’ve spotted similar examples of country branding in your hometown, please let us know! Just leave a comment below. Spotted by: Lance Sy



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