Sanya on China’s Hainan Island is already well known on home soil. But now this tropical destination is going global, attracting more international companies and investment.
Big hotel brands and others are choosing Sanya as a place to do business.
At Sanya's Haitang Bay and Yalong Bay you'll find the skyline dotted with large hotels, many of them with recognisable international names.
Investments in luxury resorts
The Rosewood is part of a company founded in the United States. It opened up in Haitang Bay two years ago, overlooking the South China Sea.
"Rosewood Sanya was a perfect fit," says Vito Romeo, General Manager of Rosewood Sanya. "Why? Because Sanya embraced our sense of place philosophy, which is all about culture, heritage and location."
"When we go around the world and find a new opportunity, this is the most important for us because when you go back after a stay, business or especially leisure, you want to bring memories home and this fulfils all of this."
Sanya and the sea
Sanya's also looking to the sea, as it grows its place on the world tourism map.
Keen to attract more yachts in future it's invested in marina facilities along its coastline.
Sanya's also simplifying entry procedures, making it easier for visiting boats to come and go and explore this island and its warm waters.
"We have five open ports around the whole island and eight open waterways in Hainan," says Stuart Hu, Secretary-General, Sanya Yachting Association.
"For example, at Nanshan open water when foreign flag boats come here, after registration, they can go in this water for free as they wish. So, there are many destinations in this area that they can go and visit."
Sanya’s growing international cruising too. Its Phoenix Island cruise terminal will soon be the home port for the neo Romantica, from the European Costa Cruises company.
It will connect Sanya with destinations like the Philippines and Vietnam.
"Each year we receive quite a lot of cruise ships, coming to Sanya that bring us international visitors. All these visitors can get off the ship and have a half-day tour or one-day tour," says Sixian Tang, Consulting Director, Sanya Tourism, Culture, Radio TV & Sports Bureau.
"And also now, we already finished five big docks for the largest cruise ships in the world to park here and also the future we hope more and more international ships can come to Sanya."
Looking to the sky
The airline, I-Fly runs regular flights to Sanya and is planning on opening an Asia-Pacific headquarters at Sanya airport.
The idea to launch more international connections, says Lisa Bu, the ground Services Manager for China at I FLY Airlines.
"We have a bigger plan for next year. In the first quarter, we plan to open a route from Sanya to Japan. That is Sanya via Russia, then to Japan, and Japan back to Sanya. Then from the mid to the end of the year, we may plan to open Sanya, via Moscow, to Europe."
"We are very confident in Sanya’s development."
As global interest in Sanya grows and more people visit the tropical destination, it's well and truly putting itself on the map.