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Global hotel pulse: Asia/Pacific news
November 27 2012

In this week’s roundup of news from the Asia/Pacific region: Orient-Express rejects buyout offer, names new CEO; Marriott plans to double Asia portfolio by 2016 and the number of Chinese visitors to US increases nearly 120%.

Each week, HotelNewsNow.com features a news roundup from a different global region. Today’s roundup covers the Asia/Pacific region.

Asia/Pacific hotel performance
In year-over-year measurements, the Asia/Pacific region’s occupancy ended October virtually flat with a 0.2% decrease to 70.9%, its average daily rate fell 0.6% to $135.51 when reported in U.S. dollars and its revenue per available room was down 0.8% to $96.08, according to data from STR Global, sister company of HotelNewsNow.com.

Regional hotel supply
The Asia/Pacific hotel development pipeline comprises 1,697 hotels totaling 374,523 rooms, according to the October 2012 STR Global Construction Pipeline Report.

Among the region’s markets, New Delhi reported the largest expected room growth (+42.1%) if all the rooms in the total active pipeline were to open (11,056 rooms).

Orient-Express rejects buyout offer, names new CEO
Orient-Express Hotels announced earlier this month that its board, after consultation with independent financial and legal advisers, unanimously determined that the unsolicited proposal from The Indian Hotels Company Limited and certain affiliates and third parties to acquire all of the outstanding shares of Orient-Express for $12.63 per share in cash significantly undervalued Orient-Express and its unique assets and was not in the best interest of Orient-Express and its shareholders.

In addition, the company announced that John M. Scott III was appointed president, CEO and a direct of Orient-Express.

Most recently, Scott served as president and CEO of Rosewood Hotels & Resorts, where he oversaw a portfolio of 17 ultra-luxury hotels located in seven countries with combined revenues of more than $500 million.

Leela to divert focus onto hotel management
Hotel Leela Venture announced 31 October it will open its third luxury hotel in India in a management contract with real estate company Supertech Limited, according to a report in Live Mint.

The company’s focus is now more on management contracts and Leela Residence luxury apartments, rather than building and owning hotel properties, said Vivek Nair, vice chairman and managing director of Hotel Leela Venture.

The company developed its own hotels and managed them until recently. Of its eight current properties, six are owned.

Marriott to double Asia portfolio by 2016
Marriott International announced it expects to more than double the size of its portfolio in the Asia/Pacific region within the next few years.

With 132 hotels open in Asia today and a pipeline of signed and approved deals now totaling an additional 143 properties, the company expects to grow to at least 265 hotels by 2016, with more than 80,000 rooms in 16 countries.

With 127 open and signed hotels in China, the company expects to open on average one hotel per month in the country for the next five years. In India, 23 hotels with Marriott International’s brands are already under construction and the company is likely to grow from 15 hotels to 50-plus hotels in the next few years.

Marriott debuts Autograph Collection in Asia
It seems Marriott is already getting a head start in its initiative to double its presence in the Asia/Pacific region. The company introduced The Autograph Collection in Asia with the opening of the The Stones Legian in Bali.

The 308-room, 22-suite hotel marks the 36th hotel to be added to the collection’s roster of independent hotels in destinations throughout the globe. The portfolio is slated to include nearly 40 hotels by year end, marking an average of one property joining per month since the collection’s inception in 2010.

Far East plans international expansion
Far East Hospitality, based in Singapore, is planning a major expansion into other countries in the Asia/Pacific region.

The company plans to double its portfolio and expand its three upscale brands, Village, Oasia and Quincy, into new markets such as Myanmar, Vietnam and Australia. Far East currently operates nine hotels and nine serviced residences in Singapore and one long-stay property in Kuala Lumpur.

Chinese visitors to US to increase nearly 120%
The number of Chinese travelers visiting the U.S. is expected to grow nearly 120% by 2016 to reach 3.25 million annual visitors, according to a new infographic from Expedia.

Among some of the online travel agency’s other findings:

  • Demand among Chinese consumers for travel to U.S. destinations on Expedia sites is up 140% compared with the previous year.
  • Last year, China surpassed Germany to become the sixth-highest spending among countries with the most visitations to the U.S.
  • Approximately 1.1 million Chinese tourists visited the U.S. during 2011 and collectively spent $7.7 billion during travel.

Key openings, announcements

  • Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide announced it will open its first Luxury Collection resort in Koh Samui, Thailand, in 2013. The 80-room property is slated to open in January.
  • The Golden Tulip chain announced it will enter the Indonesian market in 2014 with the opening of a new Golden Tulip Hotel.
  • Accor will introduce its brand to Bangladesh with two properties including the opening of the Novotel Dhaka Gulshan Avenue in the country's capital and the Novotel Chittagong. The two developments will add more than 350 rooms in the country’s two largest cities.
  • The first DoubleTree by Hilton property in Phuket, Thailand, opened in November. The 250-room DoubleTree Resort by Hilton–Surin Beach is located on the west coast of the island.
  • Hyatt Hotels Corporation announced a Hyatt affiliate entered into a management agreement with Grande Asset Hotels and Property Public Company Limited for the Hyatt Regency Bangkok, Sukhumvit. The 300-room property is scheduled to open in 2017.
  • Holiday Inn Express debuted in the Indian market with the opening of the 173-room Holiday Inn Express, Ahmedabad.
  • StayWell Hospitality Group announced three new properties in key Indian markets will join its portfolio. The properties in Hyderabad, Greater Noida and Raipur are under development and will be launched from 2013 to 2014 under StayWell's Leisure Inn brand.

Compiled by Stephanie Wharton.

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