Accor announced today its 300th hotel in the Asia Pacific region with the launch of the Grand Mercure Xidan Beijing in China.
The re-branding of Grand Mercure Xidan Beijing follows a record 2006, during which the group’s Asia Pacific hotel network grew by an impressive 21%, adding 53 hotels in 12 countries. Main countries for growth were China, Thailand, Indonesia and Australia.
The expansion included significant new hotel openings covering all seven hotel brands that Accor operates in the region: Sofitel, Grand Mercure, Novotel, Mercure, All Seasons, Ibis and Formule 1.
In addition, Accor currently has a further 95 hotels committed to open over the next two years, with China and India being two of the principal growth markets.
The Grand Mercure Xidan Beijing extends Accor’s China network to 44 hotels, with at least a further 61 hotels to open before 2010. Other Accor hotel projects in Beijing include the interconnected 312-room Novotel Phoenix Beijing and 405-room Ibis Phoenix Beijing opening early 2008, Novotel Beijing West in the hi-tech Zhongguancun district and Sofitel Wanda Beijing later this year.
Accor Asia Pacific Chairman, David Baffsky, said that Asia Pacific was one of Accor’s global priorities for future development.
‘There is vast potential in the Asia Pacific region – particularly China and India – and we have a full range of brands to service all sectors of the market,’ he said.
‘It is fitting that the 300th hotel is located in China as China has been Accor’s fastest growing country over the past three years.
Accor Asia Pacific Managing Director, Michael Issenberg, said that ‘In the past two years Accor has entered into a number of major joint-venture arrangements for development of hotels across the region, with a major emphasis on our economy brands. We are also expanding strongly in the mid-market and upper upscale sectors to give Accor a uniquely balanced portfolio.
‘In China we will see major hotels opened in other key cities including Shanghai, Macau, Guangzhou, and Nanjing and in inner Mongolia. This country-wide growth reflects China’s position as one of the world’s most dynamic inbound, outbound and domestic travel markets.’
The 296-room Grand Mercure (formerly the Marco Polo) is a well-established hotel in a prime location in the Xidan commercial and shopping area of Beijing, conveniently close to the capital’s landmarks such as the new National Theatre, as well as the Financial Street commercial district. All rooms and suites offer attractive garden or city views, with many facing the Forbidden City and Tiananmen Square. It is also a short walk to the city’s underground train system.
Accor currently manages 17 Grand Mercure hotels and resorts around Asia Pacific, with another six to open before the end of 2007.