As some 33,000 people in Shanghai cheered on Ferraris racing at the Ferrari Challenge Asia Pacific and the 2014 Ferrari Racing Days this weekend, Hong Kong-based luxury hotel chain Shangri-La had its own reason to cheer. The Italian automaker is entering a partnership with Shangri-La to bring a personalized experience for travelers attending the Asian and European race series. Ferrari announced in a press release that not only will Shangri-La be the official hotel partner, it is also sponsoring the Ferrari Challenge.
This first-time collaboration will allow Shangri-La’s VIP global guests exclusive paddock access, a garage tour, and tickets to the Formula One World Championship, among other perks, Shangri-La said in a separate press release. In exchange, Shangri-La’s logo will feature prominently on the cars, the official website, and podiums. Ferrari’s fans will also receive preferential treatment at Shangri-La’s branches. The release also mentioned that Ferrari will hold charity drives in cities where Shangri-La hotels are located in the future.
“We’re delighted about the alliance with Ferrari, an exciting brand with a great product,” said Greg Dogan, Shangri-La’s president and chief executive officer in the press release. “Through our global collaboration, we will be able to reward both companies’ loyal supporters with one-of-a-kind experiences and indulge their passion for the best and bespoke.”
According to Scuderia Ferrari Team Principal Marco Mattiacci, Shangri-La has “a lot in common with Ferrari, to begin with, attention to details, which can make the difference on the track as well as in providing a superior service to the customer.”
Ferrari has been eyeing the Chinese market since 2013 as its European sales flatline. However, despite a slight growth decline in China that year, Ferrari remains optimistic about its China prospects, and even predicts a slight growth in sales this year. Industry expert Damon Banks, director of DMB Public Relations, told marketing news site Luxury Daily that the partnership with Shangri-La is mutually beneficial—Ferrari gets to tap into the hotel chain’s customer base for its racing events, and Shangri-La gets a high-profile advertising platform. “Though many guests of the hotel might not be avid race fans, having ‘inside access’ to an element of the Ferrari brand can be very intriguing and a positive effect of the relationship,” Banks said.