Thailand, India, South Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan and the mainland are popular destinations for medical tourism. However, Macau's status as another Asian hot spot for health tourism is set to grow with the Malo Clinic Health & Wellness day hospital becoming fully operational. Said to be Asia's first and only general day hospital of its kind, the clinic offers dental treatment, medical services, a spa experience and wellness programmes. While the Malo Clinic spa opened last year, the clinic and day hospital was launched in May. The facilities at Malo Clinic include the 4,800-square-metre day hospital, a 3,900-square-metre spa, and a pharmacy. A beauty salon and a leisure zone will be added in the next phase, making the wellness clinic one of the largest in the world at 12,000 square metres. Dr Paulo Malo, president of the Malo Clinic Health and Wellness Group, says that Asia's health care tourism market is stronger than ever. 'Most of the facilities in Asia offer excellent quality, as well as cost-effective health care and wellness treatment,' he says. 'Asia also offers expertise across a range of medical specialties, at diverse price levels, to cater to the demand of different consumer segments. 'We see a lot of potential here. Malo Clinic brings in world-class health care services of European standard, but at competitive price levels. We believe this is one of the key factors directing more medical travellers to Asia.' Macau may be well known for its casinos, but Malo says the company's decision to locate the clinic in the city came after two years' of study. According to Malo, while the mainland is one of the company's primary markets, Macau is a strategic location for its first presence in Asia because 'our vision was to establish [ourselves in] the Asia market [in a place] where a concept like the offerings of Malo Clinic Health & Wellness in Macau did not exist, and we needed to strategically locate in a destination easily accessible to a large amount of people. With all the developments taking place in Macau in recent years, we saw that Macau would soon become the next hub in Asia, receiving thousands of business and leisure travellers'. Malo also points out that Macau is centrally located in Asia, and within a five-hour flight for over half of the world's population. The clinic's location in The Venetian Macao-Resort-Hotel means that Malo guests also have access to a variety of leisure and entertainment offerings, and can enjoy luxury accommodation. Malo says the company has no confirmed plans to expand further into Asia. However, it is studying proposals to open clinics on the mainland, Singapore, Taiwan and Japan. While Hong Kong's infrastructure, transportation network, human resources and large population with a high income make it an attractive place to set up a facility, Malo says the high rents and lack of space are key factors against any expansion in the city.