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Rebranding brings Anantara to capital

The Bangkok Marriott Resort & Spa will be renamed the Anantara Bangkok Riverside Resort & Spa as of Nov 1 following completion of a 300-million-baht renovation of the south wing.

The refurbished south wing will feature 175 rooms, down from 183 before as some rooms are being combined to form 10 new suites.General manager Francis Zimmerman said the switch to Anantara would add value and even a little excitement to the 19-year-old property.

The Anantara brand, created by Bill Heinecke, the chief executive and chairman of Minor International, is dedicated to “Thainess” with a local flavour, so that each Anantara hotel has a unique character and style.

The Anantara Bangkok Riverside Resort & Spa will be the third property and the first resort hotel under the brand in Bangkok. It will be positioned more firmly in the luxury category than it has been as a Marriott.

The south wing will also feature a new fitness centre and two restaurants, Trader Vic’s (retro and fusion foods) and Benihana (Japanese food).

Situated on the Thon Buri side of the Chao Phraya River on Charoen Nakhon Road, the hotel offers 407 rooms in total.

Rates in the south wing will be 500 to 1,000 baht higher than for rooms in the north and main wings, depending on the season.

“In fact, we could set our new room rates 3,000 baht higher, but we won’t do that, as the hotel situation along the Chao Phraya River remains very competitive,” said Mr Zimmerman.

CB Richard Ellis (Thailand) said the Bangkok hotel market currently suffers from an oversupply, particularly of four- and five-star establishments in centrally located areas. Another 9,700 rooms are expected by 2014.

However, Mr Zimmerman said the industry outlook had improved significantly since the July 3 election. Advance bookings for the high season are good, especially by North American tourists.

The hotel expects occupancy of 75% between next month and March, an increase of at least five points from the previous high season. Major target groups are leisure tourists from Germany, the UK, Japan and the US along with Mice participants.

Mr Zimmerman said the rest of the hotel was minimally affected by the renovation, as the work was done in the low season. For the first nine months of this year, occupancy stood at 64-65%.

Source: Bangkok Post

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