A giant Saipan sign now stands at scenic Marpi.
The Marianas Visitors Authority unveiled the sign last July 10, 2017. It is visible on the way to another iconic Saipan site, the Grotto.
MVA managing director Chris Concepcion said the idea came to him early in his tenure at the islands’ tourism body.
“When I came on board at the MVA last year, I asked my Destination Enhancement team to come up with designs for massive destination signs that will attract attention and become landmarks in the Marianas,” he said.
“We decided that giant ‘Saipan,’ ‘Tinian,’ ‘Rota,’ and ‘The Marianas’ signs would be a good way to build brand recognition for our destination. In all my travels around the world, the one thing that always stood out were these enormous signs and we wanted that for the Marianas,” added Concepcion.
The giant Saipan sign provides attractive visuals. The letters are durable, built on a platform made of concrete and painted in white, in contrast with the blue of the ocean behind it and the lush green trees that stands at the side. MVA hopes that it becomes one of the most photographed structures on island.
“The destination sign will promote Saipan and provide for additional brand exposure for the Marianas. Visitors will take photos here, upload to social media, blast in out into cyberspace, and help promote our islands as a destination,” Concepcion said
The giant sign was erected in Marpi because of the area’s rich history. Marpi is filled with World War II relics and memorials about the war and several tourist spots like Banzai Cliff and the Grotto.
“Marpi is a historical area. It is visited by thousands of tourists and residents on a daily basis. Because there is ample land area with green space available, we chose it as the launch area for our destination signage program.
“We plan to install some down south, in the Garapan area, and other scenic locations throughout the island as long as there is enough space with ample parking,” Concepcion added
He said the giant sign will add value to the tourists’ experience while on Saipan. He said MVA envisions the same experience on Tinian and Rota.
“We plan to roll out giant Tinian and Rota signs in the coming months. Shipping will be an issue, as well as permitting, but we definitely plan to install giant destination signs on Tinian and Rota soon. We have our designs ready to go already,” Concepcion said.