Deloitte & Touche Consulting Group - Our International Experience


This document contains examples of the worldwide experience of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu International in tourism.

Tourism encompasses a wide range of economic and social interactions, including transportation, catering, retail, accommodation, recreation and cultural services. It is the world's largest industry: it produces about ten per cent of direct and indirect GDP; accounts for about eleven per cent of all consumer expenditure and seven per cent of government spending; and employs over ten percent of the global workforce. Between 1993 and 2005, the World Travel and Tourism Council forecast that tourism's absolute contribution to the world economy will have more than doubled.

Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu International likewise spans the world. It is one of the world's largest consulting and accountancy practices, with over 56,000 partners and staff in more than 120 countries. Ours is the only leading international consulting organisation with a major specialist division which works exclusively in tourism, leisure, hotels and catering - a division which was established 30 years ago and has undertaken some many thousands of tourism and leisure consulting assignments around the world.

Our team includes specialists in tourism strategy, hotel, tourism and catering operations, product development, economics, human resources, marketing and market research. We recruit personnel with a record of high achievement in the industry, bringing genuine operational experience to bear on project assignments .

Tourism is one of our firm's chosen sectors and over many years we have built up a strong commitment to the industry:

Tourism and the Environment

As environmental problems continue to cause concern worldwide, tourism is starting to evaluate its own impact on natural and manmade resources. Sustainable tourism, which addresses environmental issues, has been defined by the UN Commission on the Environment and Development as "meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs". It is a "process of change in which the exploitation of resources, the direction of investments, the orientation of technological development and institutional changes are made consistent with future as well as present needs".

The effects of tourism on the environment are numerous and include:

However, while there will undoubtedly always be some impact from tourism on the environment, tourism can also serve to enhance, protect and finance conservation of the built and natural environment.

With increasing awareness of environmental issues within the tourism industry, we believe that there are four key areas which are likely to influence tourism in the immediate future: the notion of tourism carrying capacities will be reinvestigated; all operations will have to have full cost environmental audits, such as they now have financial audits; and major new developments which need environmental impact studies; management of demand will become increasingly important; and there is a need to pilot demonstration projects what will bring all of the factors involved in sustainable development to the local level.

Responsibilities for achieving sustainable development need to be clearly defined - with governments, industry and tourists taking a part - and everyone must work together towards an idea of "best practice".

As consultants, we are keen to promote the consideration and implementation of sustainable tourism initiatives. Deloitte & Touche is ideally placed to work in this area, having widely experienced professional experts in both tourism and environmental management. Specialists in these areas regularly work together, one such area being in a recent EC funded project to establish pan-European guidelines for sustainable golf course development.

Specific environmental tourism studies we have recently carried out include the following projects.

European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, Ministry of Tourism, Albania

Albanian Tourism Development Strategy

Early in 1992 we were asked by the EBRD to prepare a tourism strategy for the Government of Albania, presenting them with clear guidelines as to what they could achieve in the short, medium and longer term, together with realistic ways of attaining those goals. This included recommendations on the balance between potential demand for tourism products and the environmental constraints imposed by the need to preserve the largely undeveloped nature of the country and the natural and built heritage. Our study would also be used by international funding organisations in their prioritisation of investment in the much needed national infrastructure.

Having established the Albanians' objectives and priorities for tourism, we carried out an overall study of the country from the air and on land to identify and evaluate the potential for tourism development. We analysed the market and product opportunities for the country, taking consideration of the operating conditions, social and economic constraints. We made recommendations on requirements for marketing and promotion, the development of a sound legal and financial infrastructure for investment and for the government implementation of planning and environmental guidelines for the tourism industry.

We produced a document outlining guidelines for developing a sound and sustainable tourism industry, which would offer distinct tourism products to give marketing advantages to Albania in future years. We also assisted with the development of a practical investors prospectus, offering information on the main investment issues and promoting "keystone" tourism products for potential developers and investors.

World Bank

Ecotourism Masterplan for the Lake Baikal region

Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu International tourism consultants from around the world worked with Environmental Resources Management to prepare an Ecotourism Masterplan for the Baikal regions of Russia. We spent several months in the region to carry out the following:

-the current institutional, administrative and legislative frameworks; and
-the requirements for training and education.

In particular, we looked into the possible mechanisms to integrate and bring benefits to local communities through enhancement of the environmental resource base, creation of employment and increasing public participation. We also defined a range of ecotourism sites, both within and outside protected areas, and recreational and educational facilities to be built within National Parks. Where appropriate, we provided costings for our recommendations and directives for implementation and maintenance of a comprehensive ecotourism policy.


Environmental Management for Independent Hotels

We worked with the International Hotels Environment Initiative, the International Hotels Association and the United Nations Environment Programme to develop a programme to promote environmental management in independent hotels worldwide.

Our research team drew upon their experience of producing environmental manuals and strategies for other industries, and a collection of "best practice" examples of environmental management in hotels to develop a "tool kit" for action. This was circulated to selected hotel associations around the world for testing in the marketplace and the feedback was assimilated. We refined the toolkit and also developed an introductory "Action Kit". This aimed to encourage immediate environmental action which would bring even small hotels in developing countries a taste of the business benefits they could achieve through an environmental programme.

St. Lucia, West Indies

Tourist Resort Development

We were commissioned to undertake a market and financial feasibility study for a resort development in an environmentally sensitive bay on the island of St Lucia. The proposals identify four main areas of operation for the resort: a hotel, villas, retailing and leisure attraction.

We reviewed the overall tourism potential for the country and produced forecasts of future demand. These forecasts were related to the current and potential supply of accommodation and other facilities. Discussions were held with travel companies in principal European markets and with potential operators and agencies.

Our analysis led to revised proposals for the whole development, to bring it into line not only with market demand, but also to help preserve the nature of the bay through less intensive development. We also made recommendations as to the appropriate style of buildings and management that would be required for a more environmentally sensitive destination.

Mexico: Eco-Tourism Resort Development

Detailed Market Assessment

We were commissioned to undertake a detailed market study for the real estate and marina elements of a new "ecotourism" resort in Baja California, Mexico. The resort would comprise a marina, hotels, shops, a golf course, tennis centre, villas, condominiums, townhouses and other leisure facilities. Our research encompassed real estate and marina developments in Mexico, the Caribbean, and the USA. Most research was carried out in California (the main source market for Baja). US market preferences were identified for price, product quality, services and location for both the real estate and marina components of the development.

One of the unique selling points of the Puerto Escondido development was the client's sensitivity to the environmental impact of such a large project. As a result the client has been able to set up a 30 kilometre coastal exclusion zone around the project. This includes the exclusion of future tourism and industrial development. In our report we recommended the mix and phasing of villas, condominiums and townhouses which should be developed, together with a range of prices and an indication of the facilities to be offered.

North-East Hungary

Tourism Development Strategy

We were asked by our client (an institutional investor) to produce a tourism development strategy for the North East region of Hungary. The initial phase, now completed, involved assessing the overall tourism potential and current investment climate in the region. We studied available tourist data and supplemented this information with a series of in-depth personal interviews with key people in Hungary. The region is largely undeveloped, its great attraction being the quality of the environment and the unspoilt nature of the landscape.

Our initial conceptual recommendations for tourism development involved the gradual introduction of specialist tourism linked to wildlife and low-impact sports pursuits. The second phase will comprise a more detailed study to identify specific sites, carrying out full market and financial feasibility studies for individual projects and the production of conceptual designs.

Later stages will involve a full implementation framework to include the identification of developers, operators and sources of funding and assistance with the implementation of the whole project.

European Commission

Assessment of Tourism Development Potential, Mustang Region, Nepal

We undertook a mission funded by the European Commission to assess the tourism development potential of the Upper Mustang Region of Nepal, which borders Tibet.

Until 1992, the access to the Region was restricted. The Region has now been opened up to a limited number of tourists each year.

The study assessed the following:

The study concluded with recommended courses of action for the European Commission.

European Commission/Volvo

Environmental Guidelines for Golf Courses

We developed a publication for the European Commission which provided direction and guidance on achieving improved environmental performance in golf course development and management in Europe.

Specifically, we reviewed all information available to date, drawing on appropriate bodies and organisations across Europe and the USA; running a series of intensive workshop sessions with leading practitioners in the golf and conservation/ environmental world; and carrying out a number of specific case studies with some of the golf courses in Europe which are leading in environmental good practice.

The result of the study was a practical publication, which analysed the key environmental issues involved in golf course development and management; provided direction to additional sources of information, research and appropriate golfing bodies; and suggested a framework within which a wide range of involved parties could operate in relation to golf courses (e.g. planning authorities, governments, developers, green keepers, product suppliers, etc.

For further details about our work, please contact:

Information Source

Prepared by ...
Ms Liz Hall
Research Manager, Deloitte & Touche
(EBS Division)
Verulam Point, Station Way, St. Albans, United Kingdom, Hertfordshire AL1 5HE
Telephone +44 1727 839 000 Facsimile +44 1727 836 812
E-Mail Liz Hall