Phantasmal destination. A post-modernist perspective

Bo Wendy Gao, Hanqin Qiu, Patrick L.Espoir Decosta

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

44 Citations (Scopus)


The research outlined in this paper began as a study to explore the meaning attached to the creation of a new type of destination from a postmodernist perspective. The concept of the " phantasmal destination" was derived from the observation of several destinations favored by tourists primarily because of a myth associated with them, generally with no basis in historical reality. Shangri-La in Yunnan, China, was selected for this investigation due to its unique qualities containing all of the elements of this tourism phenomenon. This qualitative study applied the Grounded Theory Method, and uncovered other issues related to the perception of " other," the effect images created by the media, and commercial considerations on development decisions leading to the distortion of cultures.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)197-220
Number of pages24
JournalAnnals of Tourism Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2012


  • Human geography
  • Image
  • Phantasmal destination
  • Post-modernism
  • Shangri-La

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Development
  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management


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