BANGKOK, 01 December 2021 – Agoda commemorated its 13th annual Gold Circle Awards (GCA) via a special livestream ceremony out of Bangkok on Thursday, 25 November. The virtual ceremony was hosted for the second consecutive year, especially for its Thailand winners, with over 300 properties in attendance. Globally, more than 2,200 hotel partners in 48 markets won Agoda’s Gold Circle Award this year – surpassing numbers from 2019.
This is the first year that the awards expanded its full reach to the Middle East and Europe. Over 18 new markets were introduced to the awards including Netherlands, Portugal, Qatar, Russia, Egypt and more.
The awards are presented to hotels that have proven their place among the best, providing excellent value, pricing, service excellence and flexibility to guests, who have worked proactively with Agoda to meet the constantly evolving opportunities open to partners.
In this 2021 edition, hotel partners were evaluated on new criteria, such as engagement on Agoda’s mobile app and participation in Agoda’s integrated GoLocal campaign to help boost domestic tourism. Multiple rate channels were activated for the final evaluation with more than half of winning properties participating both in Agoda and GoLocal VIP programs. There was also a noticeable increase in mobile application use, and over 90% of winners offered alternative payment methods – signifying greater comfort/familiarity acceptance of going digital.
“The Gold Circle Awards is a great way for us to recognise our hotel partners for their continued support and efforts in driving the industry forward. Not only does the award shed the light on the value of external partnerships, it also brings together Agoda teams in evaluating the changing needs and habits of our partners and customers to better drive our innovative practices” said Errol Cooke, Vice President of Partner Services, Agoda.
Due to ongoing restrictions, there were no exclusive, global award ceremonies nor physical trophies given out this year. Instead, winners were honoured with a digital Gold Circle Award badge, along with AGX credits. In an ongoing partnership the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), Agoda has made a donation to plant a total 5,000 trees on behalf of all GCA winners worldwide, compared to only planting for the top three winning countries in 2020. This is a continuation of an idea that started two years ago to replace plastic gifts and bring awareness to sustainability issues.
“As an extension of hospitality, it is equally important to make a positive impact not just for our customers but for the communities we live in. Instead of our exclusive ceremonies that usually take place over 29 countries, we decided to use those resources to give back to the environment and support local community initiatives to reduce soil erosion.”, added Errol Cooke.
Ranking of top 10 winning countries:
- Thailand – 355 properties
- Indonesia – 301 properties
- Japan – 242 properties
- Philippines – 207 properties
- Vietnam – 176 properties
- Malaysia – 159 properties
- Taiwan – 135 properties
- South Korea – 103 properties
- China – 100 properties
- United States – 99 properties
List of New Countries Added this Year
- Saudi Arabia
- Czech Republic