Brown Thomas eyes big-spending Chinese customers as it welcomes Hainan to Dublin


Only 70,000 Chinese a year visit Ireland – and many are attracted to the brands at Dublin department store Brown Thomas. But with a direct connection starting next month, it’s hoped that this figure will rise substantially.
The upmarket store, looking to attract more business from the Asian giant, held a welcome reception was for the new Hainan Airlines Dublin -Beijing route along with the Ireland China Business Association in Dublin.
The Chairperson of the Ireland China Business Association, Susan Barrett, said: “The Ireland China Business Association greatly welcomes the new Hainan Airlines Beijing – Dublin flight route, the first ever direct route between mainland China and Ireland. As has been proven in many other destinations, the impact of direct access will prove game changing for bilateral trade.  It is a hugely significant milestone in the history of Ireland China relations.”

Zhang Yang, Country Ireland Manager, Hainan Airlines, Dómhnal Slattery, CEO, Avolon, with H.E. Ambassador Dr Yue Xiaoyong, Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Ireland, at the welcome reception for Hainan Airlines’ new direct flights from Dublin to Beijing, at Brown Thomas in Dublin. Photos: Arthur Carron, Julien Behal Photography

His excellency Dr Yue Xiaoyong, the ambassador of the People’s Republic of China in Ireland said; “This direct air route is important. It is undoubtedly a significant and welcome development in China-Ireland bilateral relations for Hainan Airlines to operate the first direct flight service between the capital cities of our countries. This new air link will make travel and exchanges easier and more efficient. It will help boost business and tourism and bring our two peoples closer.  Hainan Airlines and the DAA have done a great job and they deserve our applause.”
Beginning 12 June the Chinese airline will operate four flights per week. The service will include two direct flights between Dublin and Beijing and two flights with a stopover in Edinburgh.  The direct Beijing-Dublin flights will operate on Thursdays and Sundays. The direct Dublin-Beijing service will operate on Tuesdays and Saturdays. The Dublin-Edinburgh-Beijing service will operate on Thursdays and Sundays, The Beijing-Edinburgh-Dublin service will operate on Tuesdays and Saturdays.
General Manager of Brown Thomas Martina Riches said, “The store currently welcomes many Chinese visitors every year who love to shop the luxury brands we carry.”
Dublin Airport’s Senior Vice President Aviation Business Development Jon Woolf said: “This new Dublin to Beijing connection is hugely significant for the Irish economy and great news for tourism and trade as this improved connectivity will create new jobs throughout Ireland. I want to thank the Irish Embassy in China and officials at the departments of Foreign Affairs, Tourism, Transport and Sport, and Justice; our close colleagues in Tourism Ireland, and executives in IDA Ireland, Enterprise Ireland, and Bord Bia for their collective efforts and support in help us to secure this new connection.”
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