Club Med sees encouraging start to 2012

y at more upmarket resorts helped boost Club Med’s quarterly revenue by 4.5% to €353 million.

The French all inclusive operator attracted 18,000 or 9% more travellers to its 4 and 5 Trident-rated properties in the three months to January 31. They accounted for more than three quarters of customers in the period.

Winter bookings at March 3 were up by 3.7% over the same period last year.

And the company said: “Spurred by an assertive early booking policy, summer 2012 sales are off to an encouraging start.”

Chairman and chief executive Henri Giscard d’Estaing said: “Club Med’s continued its growth and was structurally profitable in 2011.

“We gained 130,000 upmarket customers in the 4 and 5 Trident segment while posting record high customer satisfaction rates.

“We increased our market share and experienced growth in new vacation markets that are developing around the world.

“First-quarter 2012 saw a further increase in business and customers gains in the upmarket 4-5 Trident segment despite a downturn in the economic and tourism environment in Europe.”

Capacity in the quarter rose by 2.9% with the opening of a village in Valmorel, France, a full winter season at Sinai Bay in Egypt and expanded availability at Sandpiper Bay in Florida.

This led to a 3.2 point increase in 4 and 5 Trident village capacity, which accounted for 75% of the first-quarter total capacity.

The company plans to open its second village in China, in Guilin, from spring 2013 and is to operate is first year-round resort in Turkey at Belek near Antalya at