HVS Asia Pacific Hospitality Newsletter - Week Ending 25 October 2019

29 October 2019
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Marina Mandarin Singapore to be Rebranded as PARKROYAL on Marina Bay

Singapore-based UOL Group Limited ("UOL") has announced the signing of a Hotel Management Agreement between Pan Pacific Hospitality Private Limited, a wholly-owned subsidiary and Aquamarina Hotel Private Limited. Located along the Marina Bay Singapore precinct, the 575-key Marina Mandarin Singapore will unveil its rebranding as PARKROYAL on Marina Bay on 1st January 2020. The hotel design will follow the green footsteps of sister property, 367-key PARKROYAL on Pickering, located along Chinatown, which has garnered wide recognition for its "garden in the hotel" concept. PARKROYAL on Marina Bay will be refurbished to provide its interior, including its over 4,700-square-metres shared event space with 790-key Pan Pacific Singapore, a nature-inspired look. This will be done in phases from early 2020 to mid-2021. The rebranding will join the 32-year-old hotel with the rest of the properties under the portfolio of Singapore-based Pan Pacific Hotels Group Limited ("PPHG"). Through its hotel subsidiary PPHG, UOL currently owns two acclaimed brands namely the Pan Pacific and PARKROYAL. PPHG currently owns and/or manages more than 40 hotels, resorts and serviced suites in 24 cities across Asia, Oceania, North America and Europe.

Two New TAT Campaigns Aim to Generate 400 Million Baht

The Tourism Authority of Thailand ("TAT") has announced two campaigns to be launched next month for the remaining two months of 2019, namely Visit Thailand with 100 Baht and Shocking Price Weekday Travel. Visit Thailand with 100 baht will offer 40,000 tourism packages worth 100 baht with 10,000 packages per day on the 11th and 12th of November and December, targeting foreign visitors to Thailand. On the other hand, the Shocking Price Weekday Travel is set to target domestic visitors, especially upper- and middle-class tourists. The campaign is to encourage people to take more trips on weekdays and enjoy discounts up to 80% on high-end tourism package. The package will include five-star hotels during Monday to Thursday, airlines, spas, and treatment services, yachting, community-based activities, Micheline starred restaurants, recreation, department stores, and other privileges from online travel agents. TAT expects the two campaigns to generate 400 million baht in tourism income and help increase the number of domestic visitors by 10-20% during the remaining two months of 2019.

Korean Air to Launch New Routes to China

South Korea-based Korean Air Lines Company Limited, operating as Korean air, has announced that it will launch new flights from Incheon Airport to three cities in mainland China from late October, including a four-time weekly service to Nanjing, Jiangsu Province on 27th October 2019; a thrice-weekly service to Zhangjiajie, Hunan Province; as well as a twice-weekly service to Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province on 28th October 2019. Serviced by A330-300 aircraft, the flights to Nanjing will depart from Incheon at 10:40 and arrive in Nanjing at 12:10 while the return flights will depart from Nanjing at 13:15 and arrive in Incheon at 16:45. The flights to Hangzhou will also be operated by an A330-300 aircraft, departing from Incheon at 12:15 and arriving at Hangzhou at 13:30. The return flights will depart from Hangzhou at 14:40 and arrive in Incheon at 18:00. With a B737-900ER aircraft, the flights to Zhangjiajie will take off from Incheon at 19:20, arriving in Zhangjiajie at 22:20. The return flights will take off from Zhangjiajie at 23:30, arriving in Incheon at 3:40. The diversification of new direct routes to China reflects an increasing demand.

Marathon to Sell 17 UK Hotels to DTGO for GBP500 Million

US-based Marathon Asset Management ("Marathon") has reached an agreement on the sale of UK hotels to Thailand-based property developer, DTGO corporation ("DTGO"). The deal includes 17 properties in the UK, accounting for a total of approximately GBP500 million. DTGO is now performing due diligence on 17 hotels after outbidding other investors from Thailand and the UK. Currently, Marathon is in the selling process of 815 Irish apartments for GBP285 million to Ireland-based Residential Properties REIT.

Brookfield Completes the Acquisition of India-based Hotel Leelaventure

Canada-based private equity firm, Brookfield Asset Management has acquired India-based Hotel Leelaventure for approximately INR40 billion. The proceeds of the sale have been used to pay-off the company's debt. The sale includes key assets including four hotels in Bengaluru, Chennai, Delhi and Udaipur, managed properties in Gurugram, Delhi, Goa and Kovalam, land in Agra and 100% holding in the subsidiary, Leela Palace & Resorts. These assets represent 80% of the company's revenues and 88% of its net worth. The deal was first announced in March 2019 but could not be completed due to certain objections by some minority shareholders including ITC. However, in September this year, the Securities Appellate Tribunal (SAT) rejected ITC's appeal, thus enabling the completion of the sale.

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