Myanmar

amazing achievement

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Paramount Inle Resort Inle Lake is one of 12 properties operated by Amazing Hotels & Resorts with 530 rooms. It also owns two golf courses, two restaurants and a travel agency. (Photo courtesy of Wonderful Hotels & Resorts)

Aung Myudin Tin is a self-made man. The story of the founder and chairman of Burmese hotel chain Amazing Hotels & Resorts, who is not yet 50 years old, is a story of rags-to-riches and, yes, an amazing testament to the fruits of hard work.

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Photo courtesy of Wonderful Hotels & Resorts

The seasoned entrepreneur currently runs 12 hotels and resorts with 530 rooms, as well as two golf courses, two restaurants and a travel agency. Projects in the pipeline include a 329-room hotel in Yangon, an 87-room serviced apartment development, a 32-room resort in the first phase of Inle Lake, and a resort on Ngaburi Beach. The chain has a total of 1,339 employees.

As a businessman, Mr Ang is at his best when faced with challenges. He chose to face the fierce competition in the local tourism industry with a positive attitude. “In fact, business in Myanmar in general is booming, so the more business there is, the more competition there is,” he told us asia focus.

“While we are not complacent, our strength has always been our decades of experience. That is why it is no surprise that our brand continues to perform well, as our focus has always been on customer satisfaction.”

Room occupancy forecasts for the company’s highest-grossing destinations in 2017 include Inle Lake at 68%, Bagan at 65% and Nga Buri Beach at 88%. For Chanda Beach properties, the company expects the domestic market to see near double-digit growth.

A good location in a prime tourist destination is never cheap for any hotelier, especially in Myanmar where land prices have been rising steadily with the rapid economic development.

“As land prices rise, so will the cost of development projects,” Mr Ang said. “However, land prices have leveled off over the past year or two, making land investment more stable.

“My prediction for land prices going forward is that they will continue to fluctuate. The biggest factor influencing this volatility will be the economic situation of the country.”

As for what Myanmar needs today to be successful in tourism, he said:

“As we observe a sharp increase in the number of foreign investors keen to do business in Myanmar, I recommend careful enforcement of the law on joint ventures.

“For example, the Myanmar tourism industry should be protected to ensure local businesses are prioritized so that they are not just surviving. Further laws should be implemented to oversee the insurance policies of operators and tourists as well as the general well-being of tourists. Both.”

The 48-year-old entrepreneur’s skill at spotting potentially viable assets over the past two decades, backed by a strong team of experts, has largely contributed to the success of his business. Joining him in starting the local hotel chain are Managing Director U Zay Ya Min Din and Group General Manager Daw Hlaing Hlaing Win.

asia focus He interviewed the ever-busy hotel property developer and visited one of his latest acquisitions, the Amazing Kengtong Resort, where he was here to oversee the renovation. He’s been quite candid about his past, starting with how he lost his 55-year-old father when he was six. His mother, in her early forties, was widowed and raised seven children alone, the youngest of whom was Mr Ang.

“After many years in the army, my father decided to leave the army and start a small factory,” recalls Mr Ang. “After a period of bereavement, my mother decided to raise us single-handedly, working hard to provide for our physical and emotional needs. She proved to us, her children, that in the end, hard work paid off. .Sometimes quickly, sometimes you have to wait.

“She’s been a constant source of strength for me, especially when I first started the business and saw how hard it was to keep it going.”

Income generated by the factory managed by his older brother, and supplemental income from a small business in the market, supported his siblings and their mother, who experienced depression after the death of the family’s original breadwinner.

Looking back, Mr Ang believes that because he grew up in a socialist environment during the era of isolationist military rule, he rarely felt that his friends had more than he did. When the political climate began to change and student uprisings for democracy began in the late 1980s, attitudes began to change.

It was also at that time that Mr. Ang decided to get married. He was 22 at the time and was in his third year of college. A positive mindset, he says, has helped him chart a career that will not only pay the bills but ultimately provide Myanmar with the opportunity to build a tourism industry.

Mr Ang and his wife started their life together by setting up their own candle making factory. Within a year, he brought their first family car. He paid 50% of the total amount and got a six-month credit. The car was bought for the sole purpose of driving tourists around the city, a job his big brother was already doing and getting paid handsomely for.

“I would say I’m very lucky to have a really good and understanding life partner,” Mr Ang said. “She has always supported me. No matter what I decide to do, she is there for me. Now my work requires traveling all over Myanmar and abroad, so I am only home three days a month. She has not once complained. She is the most beautiful woman in the world.” A calm person, nothing can disturb her.”

When he started driving tourists to earn extra income, his wife managed the candle factory. Both the couple worked tirelessly, so much so that when their first child (son) was born, she worked until the last day of her pregnancy. “I went to bed at two o’clock in the morning and an hour later she just came back from the factory because she was going into labor and I needed to take her to the hospital.

“I am proud to say that my wife and mother have been my constant inspirations, both as a businessman and as a person. They have been my pillars of strength during my darkest days.”

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Paramount Inle Resort Inle Lake is one of 12 properties operated by Amazing Hotels & Resorts with 530 rooms. It also owns two golf courses, two restaurants and a travel agency.amazing hotels and resorts

He decided to start Adventure Myanmar Travel in 1993 after a year of driving passengers to tourist attractions in and around Yangon (the city-state’s largest city is still known as Yangon) and its surroundings. He was only 24 years old at the time. To show the authorities that he had sufficient capital, he asked a friend to lend him money—for a day.

“The idea of ​​starting my own company came about by accident,” he recalls. “In fact, it was because a friend I met at the airport belittled me and after making me wait half a day said he wouldn’t use my service because he found my car too old.

“The next day, I went to a lawyer to see how I could start my own travel agency. I went on to manage Adventure Myanmar Travel for the next seven years, and then the hotel industry beckoned.”

Unlike candle factories where only Mr Ang and his wife work to earn income, maintaining a travel agency means they need employees. “I decided to sell the factory so we could have the money to run the business and a year later we were employing 12 people.

“I named it ‘Adventure’ Myanmar because when I was driving tourists around, one of my clients mentioned Myanmar as an ‘adventure’ country. It was with the support of my staff and clients that Our travel agency just made it to the list of “adventurous” Myanmar. Today the top three in the country.”

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Paramount Inle Resort Inle Lake is one of 12 properties operated by Amazing Hotels & Resorts with 530 rooms. It also owns two golf courses, two restaurants and a travel agency.amazing hotels and resorts

Six years after founding Adventure Myanmar Travel, Mr Aung decided the time was right to buy his first hotel property in Taungoo City and named it Hotel Amazing Kaytu. He chose to open the chain here because he saw a desperate need for quality accommodation among travelers looking to spend the night before heading to Yangon.

He named the new division “Amazing Holidays Hotels & Resorts” for his growing portfolio of companies. Not only does the word “amazing” have a special meaning, he said, but he is in awe of how Myanmar’s neighbors have so successfully capitalized on its “amazing Thailand” tourism campaign.

Ang acknowledged that the success of any hotel real estate development business requires not only good luck, but also a strong team to drive the business to the next level.

Besides himself, his elder brother U Zay Ya (who has many years of experience as a hotel chief engineer) and Dr. Cho Oo (an architect born in Myanmar and studied in Japan) have helped the chain achieve its current success and high growth. standard.

“Customer service is at the heart of our business, so I tell my staff to always empathize with our guests. It’s not rocket science. Once you realize that empathy can go a long way, your job becomes easier,” Mr. Aung from the hotel said. personal experience.

“The behavior of the staff has a profound effect on the overall impression tourists have of the people of Myanmar, so I always encourage them to develop the qualities of a service-minded human being.

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Paramount Inle Resort Inle Lake is one of 12 properties operated by Amazing Hotels & Resorts with 530 rooms. It also owns two golf courses, two restaurants and a travel agency.amazing hotels and resorts

“In order for my staff to provide guests with a memorable experience, they must be satisfied with what they are doing. So without their support and hard work, I believe this would not have been possible.”

He also wants his employees to think for themselves and not be afraid to speak their minds.

“I always choose those employees who dare to speak their minds. For example, the general manager of our group, when she came for an interview, told me in person that she would not work for me because of the amount I was going to give” She as salary, I was pleasantly surprised by her candor. I told her to start working tomorrow at the starting salary she proposed. “

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