Finn Partners released the results of their latest report, Outbound Rebound: The Return of Chinese Travelers. The survey was conducted in mid to late-January, started days after the Chinese government lifted international travel restrictions after 3 years. Over 2,000 affluent Chinese in first, second and third tier cities were interviewed. The findings included that one in two affluent Chinese travelers are making plans for at least five trips in 2023, planning to make an average of 5.9 trips this year, up from 5.6 trips in 2019. Younger affluent 21-25 year olds continue to be the most frequent travelers. 72% overall plan to vacation from six to over 10 days in 2023, bringing the average duration per trip to 8.7 days, versus 8.4 days in 2019. The affluent segment plans to increase spending by 15% to RMB102,500 in 2023 or US$15,299. That is 22% more than the budget set aside by Hong Kong travelers. The increase in travel budget is more prevalent in the 36+ age group, as well as those from Tier-1 cities. Over 70% of respondents desire slow, recuperative travel over an itinerary filled with activities. Affluent Chinese travelers tend to choose hotel or resort brands where they had good personal experiences in the past. Finn said star ratings and positive word of mouth also carry great potential for repeated visits. The decision process where destination is decided on first is declining as hotel brands are becoming a deciding factor in destination choice, especially among Gen Z travelers. While Staycations remain positive, mainland Chinese expect to resume their pre-pandemic level of international business travel this year, at an average of 2.1 trips.
Marriott International announced plans to expand its portfolio in Greater China with the expected addition of 47 hotels in 2023, comprising more than 12,000 rooms. This would bring the company’s presence in the region to more than 500 properties and well over 150,000 rooms by this year’s end. Marriott currently has more than 475 hotels across more than 130 destinations in the country. Their footprint is slated to grow across key regions, with significant development in the Yangtze Delta Region, the Greater Bay Area, and the Bohai Rim Economic Circle. The increase in luxury properties will include Ritz-Carlton Reserve in Rissai Valley, W Macau – Studio City and JW Marriott Hotel Xi’an. Marriott expects to add 20 properties under their premium brand portfolio leading with Sheraton hotels to debut in Beihai, Ninghai, Xuzhou and Taizhou and six Marriott hotels. Select service brands are expected to represent over half of Marriott International’s openings across Greater China this year, with 24 planned additions across Courtyard, Four Points by Sheraton, Fairfield, AC Hotels, Aloft Hotels and Element Hotels.
Jones Lang LaSalle has been commissioned by troubled Hong Kong developer Shimao Group to dispose of two of the group’s hotels, the Sheraton Hong Kong Tung Chung and Four Points by Sheraton Tung Chung. The Sheraton is priced at US$8.2 billion and is the biggest hotel in the Shimao portfolio with over 1,200 rooms, close to the airport. It is the second largest hotel in Hong Kong. Shimao missed a payment on a $1 billion note at the end of June last year.
Accor announced the opening of Grand Mercure Hanoi, a new premium hotel in Vietnam. The hotel is positioned in the heart of the city, close to the Temple of Literature. The hotel has 181 rooms and suites ranging from 27 square meter Deluxe Rooms to the grand 116-square meter Presidential Suite. The 11 suites feature separate living areas and the Executive Lounge provides an exclusive space for guests staying in the hotel’s premium accommodation. Grand Mercure Hanoi features four restaurants and bars including the VIVU Rooftop Sky Bar. There are three venues for meeting and events, a glass-sided rooftop pool, fitness center and the SONG Spa.
The Royal Orchid & Regenta Hotels, one of India’s rapidly expanding hospitality chains, announced newly opened hotels in five cities across the country. The hotel chain launched its Regenta brand in Vadodara, Jhansi, Mohali, Greater Noida, and Mahadevpura-Bangalore, marking significant growth for the company. The five properties will showcase the new and vibrant Regenta brand across two categories – Regenta Place and Regenta Inn. The 81 room Regenta Fairlak Vadodara is managed by Royal Orchid. The Regenta Place Jhansi has 33 rooms and suites while Mohali will see their first Regenta Place with 36 rooms. The Regenta Inn – Greater Noida will be 39 rooms and the debut of the 49 room Regenta Inn Grand, ORR – Mahadevpura, Bangalore will expand its portfolio of Regenta hotels there.
Park Resorto announced plans to expand into all 28 states and 8 Union Territories in India to become the biggest chain of hotels and resorts in the country by 2031. Park Resorto is currently present in Delhi, Bengaluru, Chennai, Pune, Ahmedabad and Dubai. The press release was more an advertisement of the company than something that actually gave facts to back up their prediction. The company’s Annual Club Resorto Review meeting resulted in the board deciding the brand Park Resorto will solely focus on providing hotel and resort management services. The company has multiple business ventures, including hotel and resort management services, tour packages, real estate, events, weddings, organic farming and venture capital.
Crowne Plaza Resort Guam’s grand reopening took place after a $47 million renovation and rebranding into a luxury getaway. Tan Holdings is the parent company of the 321 room beachside hotel, formerly known as Fiesta Resort Guam. Prior to that it was known as Guam Dai-Ichi Hotel. Tan Holdings spent $90 million on renovations of their two hotels on Guam and Saipan. $43 million was spent on Crowne Plaza Resort Saipan. The Guam Hotel had its soft reopening in November with IHG now managing and operating the property.
LET Group Holdings, formerly Suncity, confirmed there is no delay with its Suntrust Resort Holdings hotel and casino project in Manila, Philippines and that it is scheduled to open in 2024. As of December 31, 2022, the construction of the structural work is up to Level 6 and the façade works were in progress. Suntrust’s Manila hotel and casino development is supposed to be part of the largest Westside City project by Westside City Resorts World Inc and Travellers International Hotel Group Inc. When open, Westside City will become the fifth integrated resort in and around Manila’s Entertainment City precinct. Suntrust’s project will incorporate a 450 room five star hotel with a casino with 400 gaming tables and 1,200 slot machines. It is also developing the Westside shopping mall, opera house and a 2,000 room hotel complex.
Colliers International published a white paper saying the planned Las Vegas style resort in the UAE city of Ras al-Khaimah from Wynn Resorts could help attract over five million tourists. That would be two million visitors more than the expected number by 2030. The white paper called the casino resort a game changer for the emirate, which is positioning itself as a sustainable and nature destination. RAK had previously outlined its goals to have three million annual visitors by 2030. Colliers is predicting the mega casino resort could contribute to more than 5.5 million annual visitors to the emirate by 2030. The Wynn Resorts property is slated to have 1,000 hotel rooms and a gaming area, expected to open in 2026 with a multi-billion dollar investment. In 2022, 1.132 million overnight hotel guests visited RAK, up 15.6% year on year. Colliers expects the Wynn property to generate significant demand in its first year with the city to welcome over 3.8 million visitors by 2027.