HVS - ASIA PACIFIC HOSPITALITY NEWSLETTER - For The Week Ending 1 May 2015 (April 30, 2015)

Italthai Group announces its investment plan

Yuthachai Charanachitta, CEO of Italthai Group, one of Thailand’s leading conglomerates, announced the group’s investment plan of 11 billion baht after the opening of ‘Italthai Expo’ to celebrate the group’s 60th anniversary. Aside from the construction and engineering businesses, Italthai Group earmarked 60% of the total investment budget for its hospitality and lifestyle subsidiaries. Currently managing 38 properties in 5 countries, Italthai’s Onyx Hospitality Group is planning to expand its presence to more than 100 properties with 18,500 rooms in 10 countries within the next five years. Under its existing brands including Amari, Saffron, Ozo, and Sharma, the group will expand to China, India, Maldives, Malaysia, Sri Lanka and Indonesia. Furthermore, part of the investment plan also includes the renovation of the Mandarin Oriental Hotel Bangkok this year. By 2019, the group anticipates to double the revenue from its hospitality and lifestyle businesses to 10.2 billion baht.

Legoland Japan to open in Nagoya

Merlin Entertainments, a UK based operator of visitor attractions, including the likes of Madame Tussauds and Alton Towers, have announced the opening of the eighth Legoland in Nagoya, Japan. The new theme park will cost an estimated USD 298 million, and is projected to open in the second quarter of 2017. Merlin will directly invest USD 81.28 million over the next 3 years, whilst its local partner Kirkbi Invest will fund the rest. At an estimated value of USD 6.13 billion, the Japanese theme park market is the largest in Asia; Legoland Japan hopes to capitalize on this domestic demand, targeting 2 million visitors annually. Preceding Japan, the first Legoland in Asia was opened in September 2012 in Iskandar, Malaysia. Of total visitors generated by Legoland Malaysia in 2013, Malaysians constituted 50% in market segment, followed by Singaporeans who constituted 30%. Drawing on the potential of leisure markets in Malaysia and Singapore, Legoland Malaysia has since opened the 249-key Legoland Malaysia Hotel in November 2013.

Hilton Worldwide announces sale of Hilton Sydney

In its latest quarterly performance report released on 29 April 2015, Hilton Worldwide reported on the sale of the 577-key Hilton Sydney for AU $442 million. As part of the sale agreement, Hilton will continue to manage the property under a 50-year management agreement. Sydney has seen several large hotel deals in the last one year, including Starwood’s record-setting sale of the 557-key Sheraton-on-the-Park to Sunshine Insurance Group Corporation, a China-based company, for AU$ 463 million. Currently, Singapore’s GIC Private is looking to sell yet another Starwood branded property, the 414-key Westin Sydney on Martin Place, with hopes that international interest could push the value of the hotel past AU$ 400 million. According to STR, Sydney’s hotel sector closed out December 2014 with an ADR of AU $240.3 and occupancy rate of 88.1%, an increase of 3.75% and decline of 1.6% respectively from December 2013.

From Flowers to Stars - South Korea's new star-rating design revealed

On 22 April, the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and the Korea Tourism Organisation revealed the standard design of the new star rating system for hotels. For the past 40 years, the rating of hotels in South Korea have been displayed by the number of flowers - the rose of sharon; five roses of sharon on the golden banner for super-deluxe (equates to the five-star in international standards), five roses of sharon on the green banner for deluxe (four-star), and four roses of sharon on the green banner for first class (three-star) hotels. In 2014, South Korea welcomed over 12 million international visitor arrivals to the country. The new star rating system has been implemented to standardize South Korea’s hotel industry in line with the international standards, and is expected to enhance the understanding of foreign visitors when choosing hotels for accommodation. The new rating reviews and categorization of hotels will be led by the Korean Tourism Organization.

Awakening of the Buddhist Circuit in India

The Buddhist Circuit has come to focus lately with India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s announcement on developing world-class amenities on the Sarnath-Gaya-Varanasi Circuit as a priority, in order to boost tourism in the nation. The extension of e-Tourist Visa facility, especially to some of the Buddhist countries such as Sri Lanka, South Korea and Thailand, and the general focus of the government on tourism is anticipated to lead to an increase in tourist arrivals to the country. In light of these developments, the Buddhist Circuit presents a brilliant opportunity for sustainable development and growth of tourism in the states of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, as well as bears the potential of truly transforming into an international travel destination.

Absolute Share Price Performance, as at 29 April 2015

Closing Share Price as at29 Apr 201523 Apr 2015% Change
Australia Stock Exchange (ASX)
Amalgamated Holdings Limited12.5512.391.3%
General Property Group4.504.58-1.7%
Mirvac Group2.022.06-1.9%
Mantra Group3.583.550.8%
Bangkok Stock Exchange (THB)
Central Plaza Hotel Public Co Ltd33.5034.75-3.6%
Dusit Thani Public Co Ltd54.2553.750.9%
The Erawan Group Public Co Ltd4.564.68-2.6%
Grande Asset Hotels and Property Public Co Ltd1.511.67-9.6%
Laguna Resorts & Hotel Public Co Ltd27.5029.00-5.2%
Minor International Public Co Ltd32.0032.50-1.5%
China Shanghai Stock Exchange (RMB)
Jinling Hotel Corporation Ltd23.6125.06-5.8%
China Shenzhen Stock Exchange (RMB)
Huatian Hotel Group Co Ltd10.259.507.9%
Guangzhou Dong Fang Hotel Co Ltd16.6816.79-0.7%
China Lodging Group Ltd22.9122.432.1%
Home Inns & Hotels Management Inc28.4026.298.0%
Hong Kong Stock Exchange (HK$)
Miramar Hotel & Investment Co Ltd11.6411.303.0%
Regal Hotels International Holdings Ltd4.734.720.2%
Sino Hotels Holdings Ltd2.502.480.8%
The Hong Kong & Shanghai Hotels Ltd11.3011.181.1%
Shangri-La Asia Limited11.6411.78-1.2%
Dorsett Hospitality International1.251.26-0.8%
National Stock Exchange (INR)
IHCL (Taj Hotels, Resorts & Palaces)108.50109.60-1.0%
EIH (Oberoi Hotels & Resorts)105.00106.80-1.7%
Hotel Leela Ventures18.4019.05-3.4%
Korea Exchange (KRW)
The Shilla109,500126,000-13.1%
Singapore Stock Exchange (S$)
Amara Holdings Ltd0.5450.55-0.9%
Ascendas Hospitality Trust0.7050.71-0.7%
Ascott Residence Trust1.2751.275-
Banyan Tree Holdings Limited0.5550.5451.8%
CDL Hospitality Trusts1.711.78-3.9%
Far East Hospitality Trust0.8150.831.8%
Hotel Grand Central Ltd1.461.450.7%
Hotel Properties Ltd4.254.25-
Mandarin Oriental International Ltd (US$)1.631.64-0.6%
OUE Hospitality Trust0.980.9651.6%
Stamford Land Corporation Ltd0.580.571.8%
Taiwan Stock Exchange (NT$)
Formosa International Hotels Corporation330.00329.500.2%
The Ambassador Hotel, Ltd28.6027.653.4%
Tokyo Stock Exchange (JPY)
Japan Hotel REIT Investment Corp.87,00086,1001.0%
Imperial Hotel, Ltd2,6802,6023.0%

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