The rumors about Covid in China have reached epic proportions including 20,000 people testing positive at the Foxconn plant, thousands of holidaymakers locked in Shanghai Disney and more. We can’t tell you what is true, what is fiction but we have always followed a belief that where there is smoke, there is fire and although the Foxconn rumors may be fabricated, we would think there is some truth to it. Being from the US we know exactly how fast the new Covid variants spread the virus though the vast majority have either minor symptoms or are completely asymptomatic. Considering the spread is much worse when in a confined space, we continue to question the lockdown strategy. As for the official word, as of October 31, Guangdong is the province with the most daily positive tests at 789 followed by Xinjiang with 388. There are plenty of lockdowns going on, some in specific locations in some towns/provinces, some in the whole area. Meanwhile the Universal Beijing Resort, including the NUO Resort Hotel, is open. As for how many people will go to any of these places following the news of people locked in at MGM Cotai and Shanghai Disney, we just don’t know. We should tell you the official report on Shanghai was only 10 cases at the beginning of this week. We will assume that was before the Shanghai Disney lock-in.
Marriott International announced the signing of an agreement with Australian property developers Pelligra Group and Giannarelli Group to bring Australia’s third Ritz-Carlton hotel to the Gold Coast by 2026. The Ritz-Carlton, Gold Coast will serve as an integral component of a $480 million new waterfront development at Mariner’s Cove. The hotel will be situated in the heart of Mariner’s Cove at the prestigious northern end of the Gold Coast. It is expected to feature 150 guest rooms and suites, including a planned 275 square meter Ritz-Carlton Suite. There will be a signature restaurant featuring semi-opened kitchens, a café and three bars including a Lobby Lounge, destination bar, and poolside bar. An outdoor rooftop pool, fitness center and signature Ritz-Carlton Spa as well as 587 square meters of function space will round out the amenities at the third Marriott International property on the Gold Coast.
IHG Hotels & Resorts has officially opened its first Crowne Plaza Resort in Micronesia. Crowne Plaza Resort Saipan marks the brand’s debut with a grand opening ceremony that took place yesterday, October 31. Located in the heart of Garapan, Crowne Plaza Resort Saipan is right on Micro Beach. The hotel has 422 guestrooms, redesigned with a modern and design-led approach. Restaurants and bar concepts sit at the heart of the resort with five destinations to choose from. There are also three swimming pools, two tennis courts, a 24-hour fitness center, dedicated games corner and a kid’s program. The resort facilities were completely renovated and pre-opened in October. Banqueting and meeting rooms are also available for a variety of functions.
Anantara Riverside Bangkok Resort announced the opening of the BDMS Wellness Clinic Retreat in a forward-looking initiative that is set to strengthen Thailand’s position as a wellness tourism leader. Located on the banks of Bangkok’s Chao Phraya river amidst 11 acres of lush tropical gardens, Anantara Riverside offers a preventative healthcare center that offers a wide range of wellness, aesthetic and health screenings. The BDMS Wellness Clinic Retreat at Anantara Riverside is part of the Bangkok Dusit Medical Services network, Thailand’s largest operator of private hospitals with over 50 facilities in Thailand and Cambodia and the first outpost of the BDMS Wellness Clinic. Multiday checkups and treatments at the Clinic offer luxurious accommodations at Anantara Riverside and incorporate treatments at the Anantara Spa.
Cebu Landmasters announced the launch of a 21-hectare mountain resort in Balamban, Cebu, Philippines. The project is called Magsaysay Peak Resort and Villas and is a joint venture between CLI and MagsPeak Nature Park Inc, composed of Cebuan businessmen Bob Gothong, Segundino Selma Jr., Richard Ray King and Douglas Gacasan. CLI’s hospitality arm will build 13 exclusive mountain villas and 20 hotel rooms within the resort. It will also offer amenities including clubhouse, infinity pools, a farm-to-table restaurant and eco-friendly and outdoor programs such as hiking trails, camping facilities and other child-friendly activities. The resort is set to open in 2025, designed to create a holistic mountain experience for visitors with an outdoor, religious and hospitality component, built with sustainability at its core. The project is expected to boost CLI’s pipeline of hospitality projects which include 10 hotels and resorts in the Visayas and Mindanao with more than 1,700 room keys upon completion.
Kapamilya stars Kathryn Bernardo and Piolo Pascual teamed up to open Isla Amara, a boutique resort that sits within the Lio Tourism Estate in El Nido, Palawan in the Philippines. The 42 room boutique resort is a minute walk from Lio Beach.
Larisa Hotels & Resorts is opening another property in Goa. Larisa Ashwem is a 2.5 acres property in North Goa. The 20 room resort includes 14 luxury cottages, 4 cottage suites and 2 two bedroom cottage suites. Larisa Ashwem is said to be targeting a mix of the young and old, between the ages of 18 and 60, all of them discerning and well-traveled. The amenities will include a spa, multi-cuisine restaurant, generously sized pool with a bar. Ashwem beach is a 10 minute walk from the resort. All in-room and sharing facilities, including mini-bar, open deck, outdoor hot tub and 24×7 in room dining are available for the guests.
Nippon Hotel will open Hotel Metropolitan Haneda in the fall of 2023 at Haneda Innovation City, a smart city born on the site of Haneda Airport in Tokyo, Japan. The hotel has 10 floors above the ground of a building and 1 below with 237 guest rooms. It is equipped with an all-day dining restaurant, gym, and a rooftop observation deck. There will be expanded guest rooms that can accommodate up to three people. The property is located a one minute walk from Tenkubashi Station on the Tokyo Monorail, Keikyu Airport Line.
The landmark Ambassador Hotel Taipei in Taiwan has closed its doors to undergo a complete redesign. Once razed and rebuilt by The Ambassador Hotel Co., Ltd, it will reopen in 2028 as Ambassador Palace Hotel Taipei, a world-class property to be managed by Palace Hotel Co., Ltd. This will be Palace Hotel’s first luxury project outside of Japan. The Ambassador Hotel was the first privately owned luxury hotel in Taiwan when it opened in 1964. The Ambassador Palace Hotel Taipei will be located in the trendy Zhongshan district, a hub of culture and business known for its museum and galleries as well as a vibrant dining scene. The original property housed 425 guestrooms, six restaurants and 29 banquet rooms. Following the six year makeover, the new hotel will debut with 106 rooms and suites. Its facilities will include a fitness center, swimming pool, spa and versatile events spaces as well as a lounge for the exclusive use of in-house guests. There will be a collection of six dining venues, including a bar on the hotel’s top floor. A Japanese restaurant managed by Palace Hotel Co., Ltd will be one of the highlights. The exclusive property will also encompass 73 luxury private residences in an adjacent 23 story tower.