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Accor plans to open 16 hotels in Thailand in 2012

Accor Asia Pacific plans to add 16 new properties to its Thailand portfolio by next year on expectations of continued growth in the country’s tourism industry.

Despite a looming oversupply of rooms, especially in Bangkok, Accor is confident its strong brand, worldwide network and good locations will enable its existing and future hotels to outperform its competitors.

The 16 new hotels will offer a combined 3,642 rooms, bringing its nationwide total to 13,539 rooms at the end of next year. Eleven hotels will be opened this year and the rest in 2012.

The 11 this year are the Sofitel So Bangkok, Pullman Phuket Arcadia Nai Thon Beach, Hotel Muse, Veranda High Resort Chiang Mai, Veranda Resort and Spa Hua Hin-Cha Am, Novotel Bangkok Impact, Novotel Bangkok Platinum,Mercure Krabi Ao Nang, All Seasons Chiangmai, All Seasons Samui Chaweng and Ibis Hua Hin.

Michael Issenberg, the company’s chairman and chief operating officer,said mid-scale hotels had the highest potential to grow in this region, especially in Thailand, due mainly to rapid growth in outbound tourism from China and India.

The strong growth of low-cost airlines is also boosting the hotel segment.

Mr Issenberg said the three Accor brands with the highest growth potential in Thailand were the economy brand Ibis, the mid-scale Novotel and the upscale Pullman.

Each has its own clear segment and marketing strategies to fit its target market, he said.

The Novotel Bangkok Fenix Ploenchit,which opened last December, is the first new-generation Novotel. Room design reflects “natural living” and eco-friendly operations, and this will be adopted by Novotel’s network of more than 400 hotels worldwide.

Modularity is a priority for the wellbeing of guests who want to adapt spaces to suit their needs.

The bathroom is a key design feature and marks a significant shift. It includes a spacious shower or bath for families and is separated from the rest of the room by a transparent glass partition that becomes opaque at the flick of a switch.

Paul Stevens, the operations director at Accor Thailand, said the Novotel Bangkok Fenix Ploenchit expects occupancy of 75% in its first year by targeting both leisure and business travellers. Room rates start at 3,000-4,000 baht per night. Bangkok Post


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