New Hotel Developments Take Root Across Asia

Top hotel chains, from Hilton to Starwood, are opening new properties across the region By: Claire Makepeace
The brand-new Hilton Pattaya in Pattaya, Thailand, is one of many new 
hotel properties to be found throughout Asia. // © 2010 Hilton Hotels 
The brand-new Hilton Pattaya in Pattaya, Thailand, is one of many new hotel properties to be found throughout Asia. // © 2010 Hilton Hotels & Resorts

The Details

Alila Hotels

Hilton Hotels & Resorts

Langham Hotels

Mandarin Oriental

Sheraton Hotels & Resorts

Sofitel Luxury Hotels

St. Regis Hotels & Resorts

W Hotels
Asia is developing even further into a sought-after destination for travelers seeking an exotic yet luxurious vacation experience, along with its continuing popularity as a business travel destination. Last fall and well into 2011, major hotel companies are accommodating this growing demand with exciting new properties.

Cambodia: A New Sofitel
Also opening this month was the 201-room Sofitel Phnom Penh Phokeethra, which features eight restaurants and bars, meeting facilities and a new spa and fitness complex. The property represents a $50 million investment and the hotel boasts the largest ballroom in Cambodia.

"This is a big step for Phnom Penh and a big step for Cambodia," said Didier Lamoot, the hotel's general manager. "This hotel should move Phnom Penh from maybe-visit to must-visit for upscale travelers who've wondered whether it's possible to be catered to appropriately beyond Siem Reap."

Eighty percent of the hotel's guestrooms boast views of both the Bassac and the Mekong rivers. Within walking distance of the property, guests can visit the Royal Palace, the National Museum and Sisowath Quay, a lively waterfront cafe area.

Accommodations range across seven different categories, from 121 Superior rooms to 45 Luxury, 23 Junior Suites, 11 Prestige Suites and one Opera Suite.

China: Sleek New Hotels in Shanghai and Beyond

The Langham Xintiandi hotel officially opened in Shanghai on Oct. 15. The new five-star luxury hotel features 357 rooms, many of which offer floor-to-ceiling windows and breathtaking views of the city. The hotel is located in the heart of Xintiandi and is adjacent to Huai Hai Road, a popular boutique shopping location.

Mandarin Oriental recently announced that they are constructing a new luxury hotel in Pudong, Shanghai, which is set to open in 2013. The 362-room hotel will be located in the heart of the financial district, making it ideal for business travelers. It will feature elegant yet simple decor, three restaurants, an executive club lounge, a bar and a range of meeting rooms for events and business functions.  

Starwood's Sheraton Hotels & Resorts brand is planning to open three more hotel properties in China by the end of January, including its third property in Shanghai and its first hotel in Wenzhou, an economic center located on China's southeastern coast. The Sheraton Wenzhou Hotel is slated to open on Dec. 28, followed by the Sheraton Jiangyin Hotel on Dec. 13 and the Sheraton Shanghai Hongkou Hotel on Jan. 15. With these three properties, Sheraton will soon boast a portfolio of 35 hotels in China, with another 29 scheduled to arrive within the next few years.

"China is now Starwood's second largest hotel market outside the U.S. and our iconic Sheraton brand is leading the charge, accounting for more than half of all Starwood hotels opening across this vast, dynamic country," said Simon Turner, Starwood president of global development. "Sheraton has rapidly built a footprint not only in well-known cities such as Beijing and Shanghai, but also in many emerging urban centers. And demand continues to outpace supply in China, where there are 171 cities with a population of more than one million people."

This November, The St. Regis Lhasa Resort opened in Tibet. The hotel is the first international luxury hotel in Tibet, located minutes from the holy Potala Palace and Gongga Airport. The resort features 150 rooms and 12 suites, along with several restaurants, bars, meeting rooms and a spa.

Laos: New Resort in Historical Luang Prabang
The brand-new Alila Luang Prabang opened this Oct. 1 in the UNESCO World Heritage Town of Luang Prabang, the former royal capital of Laos. Previously, the hotel's building was a governorís mansion and then a political detention center; architect Bunnag Duangrit has since developed it into a luxurious hotel with contemporary stylings. The Alila Luang Prabang has 23 suites and offers modern amenities that include private pools with some of the suites, a hotel bar, restaurant and spa. The hotel also features a cooking school that teaches guests about the preparation of traditional Laotian cuisine, as well as offering opportunities to participate in local cultural activities such as giving alms to local monks. The resort is located just five minutes from the town center of Luang Prubang and 10 minutes from the airport. Rates range from $195 to $575 per night.

Thailand: Luxury With a Thai Twist
Starwood's W brand opened its first hotel in Southeast Asia this November. The W Retreat Koh Samui is an all-villa beachfront resort on Maenam Beach, giving guests prime access to Thailand's festivals and lunar ceremonies. The 75-villa resort features W designs with a Thai feel, along with a state-of-the-art spa and lounge. There will be several packages available, including retreat packages and a free extra night when guests book before March 31, 2011.

Sheraton also opened its first hotel in Thailand - the Four Points by Sheraton Bangkok, Sukhumvit 15. The hotel is located in central Bangkok near such tourist attractions as the Asok Sky Train station and numerous nightclubs and restaurants. The Four Points by Sheraton Bangkok, Sukhumvit 15 will also have special opening offers valid through March 31, 2011. Rates are priced from just $84 per night, including a complimentary breakfast.

This month, Hilton Hotels & Resorts opened its brand-new Hilton Pattaya in Pattaya, Thailand. The 302-room property will be situated atop the new Central Festival at Pattaya Beach, a mixed-use entertainment center which will house more than 200 international shops and restaurants, a 10-screen cinema and a 16-lane bowling alley, all overlooking Pattaya Beach and the surrounding bay. Guests of the Hilton will enter the hotel via an exclusive ground-floor entrance, with the hotel lobby to be located on the 16th level. Accommodations will occupy floors 19-33 and will feature LCD televisions, high-speed Internet service and Serenity Beds.

"Our presence in Asia Pacific continues to grow rapidly with the opening of Hilton Pattaya, a stunning property overlooking the Gulf of Thailand," said Dave Horton, global head, Hilton Hotels & Resorts. "This hotel combines signature Hilton style and service with one of Asia's largest luxury beachfront shopping and entertainment centers to provide a premium leisure experience for today's travelers."

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