HotelNewsNow.com each week features a news roundup from a different region of the world. Today’s review covers Asia/Pacific.
Hotel supply outlook
The Asia/Pacific hotel development pipeline comprises 1,479 hotels totaling 359,753 rooms, according to the January 2012 STR Global Construction Pipeline Report from STR Global, sister company of HotelNewsNow.com.
Among the region’s countries, China ended the month with the most rooms under construction with 141,177. Five other countries reported more than 5,000 rooms under construction: India (28,769 rooms); Thailand (8,807 rooms); Vietnam (7,957 rooms); Malaysia (7,479 rooms); and Indonesia (6,762 rooms).
Hong Kong to add 9,000 rooms by 2016
Hong Kong's HKD$250-billion tourism industry will add 9,000 more rooms in five years, but no new sites will be available during the new fiscal year, according to a report in Hong Kong news publication The Standard.
John Tsang, financial secretary of Hong Kong, said five hotel sites were included in the Land Sale Programme for 2011-12 and three have been sold. These would offer 1,500 rooms. The total number would come from a mixed-use site, and five redevelopment or conversion applications that have been approved.
Tsang said there are 190 hotels providing approximately 62,000 rooms. By 2016, there will be 50 more hotels, taking the total to 240 and increasing the number of rooms to 71,000.
The Hong Kong Tourism Board has repeatedly highlighted the need for more hotel rooms, noting the shortage and rising rates.
Hong Kong visitor arrivals up 16.4% in 2011
Visitor arrivals to Hong Kong reached an all-time high in 2011 at 41.92 million people, an increase of 16.4% year over year, according to the Hong Kong Tourism Board.
During 2011, overnight visitor arrivals increased 11.1% year on year to 22.32 million, or 53.2% of total visitor arrivals to Hong Kong. Among all markets, Mainland China registered the most prominent growth in overnight arrivals at 16.5% while Taiwan also recorded a 7.5% increase.
According to the latest projection, total expenditure associated to inbound tourism for 2011 is expected to exceed HKD$253 billion (US$32.6 billion), 20.5% more than in 2010. Meanwhile, per capita spending is expected to rise for both overnight visitors and same-day visitors, respectively, by 9% to HKD$7,333 (US$945.67) and by 4% to HKD$1,920 (US$247.60).
Below are full-year visitor arrivals for various market regions:
• Mainland China: 28,100,129 (+23.9%)
• North Asia: 2,304,683 (+4.4%)
• South and Southeast Asia: 3,751,149 (+7.1%)
• Taiwan: 2,148,733 (-0.7%)
• The Americas: 1,821,096 (+4.1%)
• Europe, Africa and the Middle East: 2,194,319 (+0.9%)
• Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific: 757,871 (-1.4%)
India hotel boom breakdown by brand
The hotel building boom is officially underway in India, as evidenced by a spate of recent development announcements from the major brands.
Their interest is not without reason. There are only 167,806 hotel rooms in the country, according to STR Global. Las Vegas, by comparison, boasts 168,856.
And with a population of more than 1.17 billion, according to the World Bank—a tally comprising a burgeoning middle-class citizenry who for the first time in the country’s history have the disposal income needed for domestic travel—India is geared to sustain development for the foreseeable future.
But one size doesn’t fit all when it comes to the brands’ approach to this expansive free for all. To lend some clarity to the building frenzy, HotelNewsNow.com checked in with seven global hotel brands (Best Western International, Choice Hotels International, Hilton Worldwide, Hyatt Hotels Corporation, InterContinental Hotels Group, Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide and Wyndham Hotels Group) that announced recent development plans in India for a snapshot of current conditions and future plans.
Australian hotels report total 2011 return of 17.8%
Hotels in Australia recorded a total return of 17.8% last year, as the sector recovered from the ravages of the global financial crisis. The return was 5.5 percentage points over the previous year's result of 12.3%, according to the Hotel Valuation Index published by the Property Council of Australia, reports The Sydney Morning Herald.
The index, published quarterly, comprises data from 13 owners representing 99 assets that are worth approximately US$5.6 billion—about 65% of the hotel investment market. It is sponsored by Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels, Tourism & Transport Forum and Ryan Lawyers.
Lemon Tree launches Lemon Tree Premier
India-based Lemon Tree Hotels unveiled its premium brand of hotels, Lemon Tree Premier. With more than 500 rooms in HITEC cities of Bengaluru, Gurgaon and Hyderabad, Lemon Tree Premier hotels provide an enhanced product offering.
With projects underway in New Delhi, Mumbai, Gurgaon and Pune, Lemon Tree Premier will have an inventory of approximately 1,500 rooms in the next three years.
Swiss-Belhotel to open eight hotels in Indonesia
Swiss-Belhotel International is set to open eight 3- or 4-star hotels across the archipelago, said Harshanty Kaloko, regional public relations and promotions manager for the company, according to The Jakarta Post.
The company recently opened the first 4-star Swiss-Belhotel in Merauke, Papua and opened another hotel in January: The 3-star Swiss-Belinn Balikpapan in Balikpapan, East Kalimantan, on 12 January, Kaloko said.
The company will open three more Swiss-Belinn hotels before the end of the year in Pekanbaru, Riau; Makassar, South Sulawesi; and Pangkalan Bun, Central Sulawesi, Harshanty added. Swiss-Belhotel hotels would be opened in Palangkaraya, Central Kalimantan; in the rainforest of Kuta, Bali; and at Harbor Bay in Batam, Riau Islands.
The group operates 26 hotels in 21 cities across the nation and claims an average occupancy of 75%.
Key openings, transactions
• The 100-villa Dusit Thani Maldives resort opened 6 February. It is the first Dusit International property in the Maldives.
• Hilton signed a management agreement with PT Nurtirta Nusa Lestari to bring the first DoubleTree by Hilton property to Indonesia. The 261-room DoubleTree by Hilton Jakarta-Diponegoro is expected to open in 2014.
• The Ascott Limited, CapitaLand’s wholly-owned service residence business unit, secured a management contract for its first Citadines Apart’hotel in Surabaya, Indonesia. The 288-unit Citadines Marvell Surabaya is scheduled to open in 2014.
• Marriott International announced plans for a new Edition hotel in Bangkok. The Bangkok Edition will be part of a mixed-use development planned for one of the tallest buildings in Bangkok.
• Hyatt announced that a Hyatt affiliate signed a management agreement for Park Hyatt Bangkok with Central Embassy, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Central Group of Companies. The 222-room property is slated to open in 2014.
• Qatar National Hotels Company took ownership of the 103-room Raffles Hotel Singapore, the first hotel to operate under the Raffles Hotels & Resorts brand.
• Accor opened the 427-room Pullman Jakarta Indonesia, formerly the Hotel Nikko Jakarta, on 19 January.
Compiled by Stephanie Wharton.