VN Express said the hospitality market in Ho Chi Minh City remained gloomy in the first half of the year due to a slow recovery rate of international tourist arrivals. According to Savills Vietnam, the hotel occupancy rates in the first half of 2023 stood at 64%, 92% of pre-pandemic levels. HCMC welcomed 18 million visitors. In the second quarter, occupancy rates were 60%, down 8 percentage points from the first quarter, while room rates of VND1.9 million a night were down by -2% from the previous quarter. Savills expects the market to recover fully in 2024, but Vietnam is lagging behind its regional peers regarding international tourism recovery. Hotels rely on business guests since HCMC is a transit point between various provinces and cities. The return of Chinese tourists would be a bright spot for the city’s hotel market if it occurs. So far this year, China is the second biggest feeder market of Vietnam’s tourism, with 738,000 arrivals. As of June, HCMC had 15,662 hotel rooms from 110 projects.
The Ascott Limited is embarking on a refresh of its namesake brand to showcase its hotel-in-residence hybrid model. The lodging business unit from CapitaLand Investment will refresh and showcase its flex-hybrid accommodation concept that has proven resilient through and post-pandemic. They describe it as the preferred model in the lodging industry. The hotel-in-residence model enables Ascott to cater to varying lengths of stays, from short to extended periods, for different guest profiles, elevated with the convenience of a hotel’s services, facilities, and amenities. Rather than truly explain what the refresh is all about, the press release was basically just a complete description and PR for their accommodation concept.
Dusit International announced it will continue its expansion in Japan this September with the opening of Dusit Thani Kyoto, a new luxury hotel in the city’s Hanganji Monzen-machi district. This will be their second hotel after ASAI Kyoto Shijo, which opened in June. The upcoming hotel will have 147 guest rooms. It will offer a wide range of facilities for business and leisure, including event space for up to 240 guests, a fitness center, an indoor swimming pool, and a signature Devarana Wellness Center. A range of food and beverage offerings will be added to the list of options for guests.
The flagship Dusit Thani Bangkok will reopen next year with residences, offices, and retail space. Besides that and the Kyoto property, Dusit International is set for a massive expansion in China and India, seeking to double its hotels worldwide to around 100 by 2025. A midrange Dusit Princess hotel in China’s Jiangxi province will open by the end of the year. Past the Kyoto opening, Dusit wants to expand in other areas in Japan, including Osaka, Tokyo, and Okinawa. The total investment in the Bangkok expansion, developed with Central Group, will reach US$1.3 billion. 70% of the residential space has already been reserved.
Frasers Hospitality announced the official opening of its maiden property in the Kingdom of Cambodia – Capri by Fraser, Phnom Penh. The 86-unit Capri by Fraser, Phnom Penh, marks Frasers’ first foray into the Kingdom with two more projects in the pipeline as part of its growth trajectory across Southeast Asia. With this opening, Frasers has a portfolio of 20 properties with over 4,500 units across eight gateway cities in Southeast Asia. The more than 10 projects in the pipeline include nine gateway cities across Cambodia, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, and Vietnam in the next five years. Capri by Fraser, Phnom Penh, offers a mix of studio and 1-bedroom units and features hallmark facilities of Capri by Fraser, including The Den, a 24/7 gym, Spin & Play self-service launderette with an interactive game, an all-day dining restaurant, and the rooftop bar called Drinx. Capri by Fraser is the first of three properties owned by Singapore-based MSQM VCC and Cambodia real estate fund, and long-standing partner, ZTH Co Ltd.
Lotte Hotels & Resorts announced the soft opening of L7 Hotels by Lotte West Lake Hanoi on July 28, the first overseas hotel of the L7 Hotels by Lotte brand, located in Hanoi, Vietnam. The hotel is located within Lotte Mall West Lake Hanoi, the largest mall complex in Vietnam. The hotel features 264 hotel rooms and 192 serviced residence rooms overlooking West Lake and the Red River, a complex with two 23-story towers. The hotel is branded as a full-service 5-star lifestyle hotel with various amenities and services. Lake Salon is an exclusive lounge for guests staying in premium rooms with access to the Club Lounge. The rooftop infinity pool on the 23rd floor overlooks West Lake and has a circumference of 16km. There are various on-premise restaurants, plus the Lush Salon lounge, with its design based on a communal lounge concept that can function as a shared office.
Minor Hotels is expanding its Western Australia portfolio with the launch of its first Oaks Hotels, Resorts & Suites property in Perth, Oaks Perth Hotel. The newly acquired 190-room hotel officially opens under the Oaks Hotels brand on August 18. It is centrally located in Perth’s cosmopolitan CBD. Guests can choose from a range of self-contained studio accommodation options featuring fully equipped kitchenettes, some with expansive views over the city of Perth. The Oak & Vine restaurant has two rooms designated for conferences and events, combining 240 square meters of space and more amenities.
The Alcon Victor Group and Radisson Hotels announced the grand opening of Radisson Blu Hinjawadi in India soon, a 170 suites and rooms hotel. There are various food and beverage options as well as leisure and wellness facilities, including a modern fitness center, a spa, and a rooftop swimming pool.
OYO said it plans to add 50 hotels and homestays by the end of this year in Rameswaram and Ramanathapuram in India. Most of the homestays will be near the Ramanathaswamy Temple. OYO said they will train homestay owners on earnings opportunities. The hospitality platform also plans to initiate and develop tourism activities.
Marriott International announced new appointments to its Asia Pacific (excluding China) leadership team. Christine Chan will be the CFO of Asia Pacific (ex-China), while Andrew Newmark will be the Chief Human Resources Officer of Asia Pacific (ex-China). John Toomey was named Chief Sales and Marketing Officer APAC (ex-China), and Oriol Montal is now Managing Director, Luxury. At the same time, Karen Kim is Vice President of Global Design, and Shawn Hill is Chief Development Officer all Asia Pacific (excluding China).