Luxury Collection Hotels Planned: Astor Hotel, Tianjin And Malus Sanya, Hainan
American hotel operator Starwood— which owns brands like Sheraton, Westin, W and St. Regis — has made a big push in the Chinese market in the last decade, particularly in the last few years. In 2010, the company plans to open 30 hotels in China, two of which will be the first “Luxury Collection” hotels in the mainland.
From China Hospitality News:
The iconic Astor Hotel in Tianjin is scheduled to open as a Luxury Collection Hotel in May 2010 after a US$22 million renovation. And The Malus Sanya, a Luxury Collection Resort, is a new-build resort set to open in late 2012 [in Hainan province].
According to Simon Turner, the president for global development with Starwood Hotels & Resorts, by working with the right partners on the right properties in the right places, The Luxury Collection has enjoyed steady and strategic international growth in key markets like China even in challenging times. Turner pointed out that in addition to new-build properties, Starwood is attracting a growing number of owners and developers who seek to rebrand existing properties as Luxury Collection hotels, thus maintaining their independence while tapping into Starwood sales and marketing network.
Starwood’s choice to target Tianjin and Sanya is a highly strategic move. Though Tianjin is often overshadowed by nearby Beijing, officials there have taken great pains to “rebrand” their city as a modern, cosmopolitan destination. As we wrote recently, a number of high-end hoteliers have completed new constructions in Tianjin in the past few years, in the hopes that “if you build it, [retailers and businesspeople] will come.”
Sanya, in south China’s Hainan province, is another up-and-coming tourism hotspot. This year, the Chinese government announced that it intends to transform Hainan into a major global tourism destination (it’s already quite popular among Chinese tourists). Already, Starwood has built a St. Regis hotel in Sanya’s Haitang Bay — which is quickly becoming Sanya’s luxury hotel epicenter — and a Luxury Collection location will likely fit in well among its five-star competitors.