Association of Tourism Attractions, Penang (ATAP)
The Association was founded in 2005 with the objectives of encouraging the establishment, promotion, development and improvement of the tourism attractions, tourism products and services in Penang.
The other objectives of the establishment of ATAP include the following :-
– to create an active network of private and government run tourism attractions, product and services;
– to improve the image of Penang among travelers;
– to enable cross promotion amongst members;
– to serve as a platform to address issues affecting its members where members can share their success stories or voice their concerns.
Currently there are 10 categories of membership profile which include :-
– Eco-Agro Attractions
– Culture, Arts, Heritage & Religion
– Food, Beverage, Entertainment
– Health & Wealth Industries
– Tourism Education
– MICE/Event Venue
– Sports & Recreation
– Tourism Services
– Associate Members
ATAP has 50+ active members.
Are you a tourist attraction? Find out more how to Become A Member.
For more information, please write to email@example.com
The History of ATAP
It started with an idea to promote the tourism attractions, products and services in Penang back in 2003 by the late Eddy Low, who was the Butterfly House (Pg) Sdn Bhd’s general manager. Realising the potentials of the industry that could be further explored and expanded upon, he set about formalising his idea that led to the official formation of the Association of Tourism Attractions Penang in 2004.
The association, better known as ATAP, was formed with a pro-tem committee on September 9, 2004 that consisted of 12 committee members. The members were Butterfly House (Pg) Sdn Bhd, Sungai Burong Ostrich Farm, CKC Food Industries Sdn Bhd, Penang Bird Park, Craft Batik Sdn Bhd, Ferringhi Square Management Sdn Bhd, Island Plaza Management Sdn Bhd, Tropical Spice Garden, Penang War Museum, OE Fine Jewellery Sdn Bhd, Kek Lok Si Temple and Cheah Kongsi.
The committee at that time was chaired by the late Eddy Low with Tay Chye Hock as the Secretary and Dr Gino Ooi as the Treasurer. ATAP’s registration with the Registrar of Societies was formally approved on April 1, 2005 and its very first AGM was held on June 23, 2005 with five honorary members and 17 ordinary members. The honorary members were government-owned tourism attractions namely State Museum and Art Gallery, Penang Botanic Garden, State Fishery Department, USM Museum and Gallery and State Forestry Department.
By the year 2006, the total number of members have increased to 31 and the formation of ATAP was officially launched at Island Plaza by the then Penang State Exco for Tourism Development, Teng Chang Yeow. Even as the association began to attract more new members, it started organising bi-monthly gatherings to keep its members updated, to share news on the tourism industry and to conduct checks on members so that they kept to a high standard of service.
Realising a need for a complete map to showcase the many tourism attractions in Penang, ATAP decided to start its own map and printed its very first map in 2008. The ATAP map was officially launched by the current Penang State Exco for Tourism Development Danny Law and ATAP chairman Eddy Low. A total 90,000 copies of the map was printed along with 10,000 copies of ATAP brochures. YB Danny Law had also allocated RM5,000 to furnish ATAP’s office with air conditioners. Four years later, in 2012, Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng launched ATAP’s website.
ATAP continues to be active in organising forums and seminars for its members to keep them updated and
informed on the hospitality and tourism industry. New members were strictly vetted before being accepted into the association as not all establishments are allowed to join. The list of members have also included organisations in the food and beverage industry, sports and recreation, tourism education, health and wellness, arts, culture, heritage and religion such as the clan kongsi, some museums and retail centres such as Craft Batik and Ghee Hiang Manufacturing. The association also became an important platform to link its members with relevant authorities to resolve issues involving their businesses.
Today, the association turns 12 and has a total 57 members with a new direction in promoting its businesses. It is now led by current chairman Ch’ng Huck Theng and has moved on to embrace the changing times in the tourism industry. Instead of focusing only on the traditional marketing method of brochures and maps, ATAP has embraced the growing importance of the internet. It now encourages its members to turn to online marketing, through social media and websites, as a way to promote their premises and establishments. Now, the association organises events and networking sessions for its members to create more synergistic cooperations between its members and the relevant authorities.