HotelNewsNow.com each week features a news roundup from a different region of the world. This week’s compilation covers Asia/Pacific.
In a global review during August’s Hotel Data Conference, Asia/Pacific is the top region with 24.8% revenue per available room growth for June year to date, according to Sarah Duignan, director of account development at STR Global, who presented at the Global Performance Trends session.
All regions are showing positive year-to-date revenue-per-available-room growth. “This is good news when comparing to year-end 2009 where across the globe all regions were in double digit decline,” Duignan said.
In addition, Duignan said Asia/Pacific is hovering near double-digit demand growth at 9.4%.
• Read “HDC: Asia/Pacific leads global hotel performance.”
STR Global: Asia/Pacific region shows gains
Hotels in the Asia/Pacific region experienced increases in all three key performance metrics for July 2010 when reported in United States dollars, according to data compiled by London-based STR Global.
In year-over-year measurements, the Asia/Pacific region’s occupancy rose 9.6% to 67.3%, average daily rate increased 11.9% to US$124.69, and RevPAR jumped 22.7% to US$83.94.
• Read “STR Global: Asia/Pacific results for July 2010.”
Asia/Pacific pipeline tops quarter-million rooms
The Asia/Pacific hotel development pipeline comprises 1,029 hotels totaling 256,060 rooms, according to the July 2010 STR Global Construction Pipeline Report.
China reported the most rooms in the total active pipeline (139,193 rooms) and in the In Construction phase (98,515 rooms). India followed with 46,562 rooms in the total active pipeline and 29,819 rooms in the In Construction phase.
Among the key markets in the region, Shanghai ended the month with the most rooms in the total active pipeline (13,980), with more than 80% of its rooms in the In Construction phase (11,411). Bangkok reported 9,642 rooms in the total active pipeline and 5,411 rooms in the In Construction phase, followed by New Delhi with 7,399 rooms in the total active pipeline and 5,040 rooms in the In Construction phase.
• Read “STR Global: Asia/Pacific pipeline for July 2010.”
OTAs turn focus to India’s hotels
The travel distribution landscape in India has undergone a major change during the past few years.
The entry of the likes of Expedia and Travelocity during the past couple years has coincided with the efforts of all the OTA players to move toward high-margin products, such as hotels and packages.
The overall OTA market in India is now estimated to be more than US$1billion, said Dhruv Shringi, co-founder and CEO of Yatra Online.
“(The OTA segment in India) is expected to grow by further 30-40% by the end of 2011 fiscal year (end of March next year),” Shringi said. “The domestic air currently accounts for 75% of the total transactions in the OTA segment, whereas the international air would be having a share of 15%. (International air ticketing) is expected to witness 100% growth in the coming year. The rest would be made by mainly hotels and to some extent holidays.”
• Read “OTAs in India add hotel bookings to revenue mix.”
Ibis Singapore deal represents largest sale of 2010
The Ibis Singapore has been sold in a transaction that marks the biggest 2010 deal in terms of dollars in the Asia/Pacific region.
The transaction exceeded the recent US$115 million sale of the Sofitel Wentworth Sydney by Tourism Asset Holdings Limited in May 2010, according to Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels.
• Read “Ibis Singapore sold in biggest ’10 Asia transaction.”
Beijing’s hotel development boom continues
Two years on from the Olympic Games and the city-wide frenzy of hotel building that went alongside it, Beijing hoteliers are celebrating a strong recovery despite fears of oversupply and competition from the Expo in Shanghai.
STR Global report occupancy rates in Beijing nearly doubled during June 2010 from the previous year, up 33.5% to 66.3%, while revenue per available room was up 41.2% to US$63.52 during the same period.
And development follows that recovery. There are a total of 23 hotels in development in Beijing, comprising 6,267 rooms, according to STR Global.
• Read “Beijing hotel development is booming.”
Cooper takes Marriot’s top role in region
The Ritz-Carlton appointed Herve Humler as president and COO. Humler, one of the original founders of The Ritz-Carlton in 1983, will be responsible for leading the brand’s operations and global growth strategy and championing its distinctive service culture.
Humler replaces Simon F. Cooper, who has been named Marriott International’s new president and managing director for Asia/Pacific.
• Read “Ritz-Carlton shuffles leadership.”
Taj reopens historic wing of Mumbai property
The historic heritage wing of Taj Hotels, Resorts and Palace's 1903 flagship in Mumbai reopened on Sunday, 15 August. It was closed after terrorist attacks forced its closure in November 2008.
The Taj Mahal Palace, Mumbai now features 285 newly restored luxury guestrooms and suites, including 161 Grand Rooms, 82 Taj Club rooms and 42 Luxury Suites, and newly restored signature restaurants and bars, elegant ballrooms and grand public spaces, all ready to welcome guests.
• Read “Taj Mahal Palace, Mumbai, reopens.”
Formosa plans global growth
Following the acquisition of Regent Hotels & Resorts and the finalization of a new global leadership team, Taipei, Taiwan-based Formosa International Hotels Corporation is working on plans to strengthen its presence in key regions like the U.S., Europe and Asia.
The company plans to have a New York-based office by late October or early November, said Steven Pan, Chairman of FIHC and Regent Hotels & Resorts.
“Worldwide, we hope to open 30-40 hotels in primary cities that (share) a commitment to innovation, as well as elegant but simple luxury,” Pan said.
• Read “Formosa sets global vision for Regent.”
This and that
• New Zealand company Jucy Rentals is expanding into the hotel industry with the opening of its first hotel in Auckland. The Jucy Hotel operates with a pay-as-you-go model so guests will only pay for services they decide use. The hotel is a renovated, 60-room building at the centre of Auckland’s central business district.
• Shanghai-based Home Inns & Hotel Management reported second-quarter income from operations increased to RMB173.9 million (US$25.6 million) from RMB67.7 million (US$9.9 million.) Revenue increased 25.7% year-over year to RMB806.9 million (US$119 million.) The company expects third-quarter revenue will increase 20% to 23%.
• According to various reports, receivers and liquidators have offloaded a US$94-million Australian hotel portfolio. The portfolio was previously held by the collapsed Bridgecorp and related entities, and sold with an agreed sale of the Courtyard by Marriott Parramatta for about US$24 million. The hotel was one of three placed for sale by receivers and liquidators.
• Several reports indicate that India’s Royal Orchid Hotels plans to raise up to INR1.5 billion (US$31.9 million) to fund new projects. The plan is to double the company’s guestroom inventory to 2,000 by the end of 2011. The company has 13 hotels open in seven cities across India.
• Absolute Hotel Services announced the latest U Hotels & Resorts management contract with Sudjid Surijamorn, owner and director of Nai Harn Resort Company. The new development of the 140-room U Phuket Resort will be the first U resort in Thailand which will open in late 2011.
• Zuri Group Global plans to invest INR12 billion (US$255.2 million) in India’s hospitality sector. It will launch its own brands and obtain up to 15 management contracts, according to reports.