Travel Agent has been hearing a lot of buzz about Club Med properties in the last few months, more so than usual, so we met with Club Med CEO North America Xavier Mufraggi to get the scoop.
Recently, it has been the goal of Club Med to change the reputation it has held for so long and to reemerge as a refined and elegant vacation getaway, while still providing that family-friendly atmosphere that it has been known for. Most recently the company embarked on a $25 million renovation of Sandpiper Bay in Florida, the last of a $1 billion renovation project on Club Meds worldwide.
Read about Joe Pike's recent trip to Club Med Ixtapa, where he witnessed these new renovations firsthand.
The all-inclusive properties are putting a stronger emphasis on sports, which is a major selling point for the U.S. market. Sandpiper will be the first property to debut this new program when it unveils its tennis and golf academies.
We were interested to learn that Club Med was one of the few hotel companies that really managed to stay above water during the 2009 economic woes. Mufraggi tells us that the properties never had to slash prices and were able to still produce large visitor numbers.
Mufraggi tells us that Club Med is planning to open five resorts in the next five years, including a ski resort in China. We were also informed that a new Egypt property will open in November as well as one in Brazil in 2012.