Accor to revamp Sofitel brand
French hotel group Accor is planning to revamp its top-end Sofitel brand upgrading it from a predominantly "upmarket" rating to the "luxury" bracket. The company said that some of its "less inspiring venues" have compromised the brand's image and it plans to hive off 35 of these into a new chain aimed mainly at business travellers, where they will trade under the Pullman name. In addition, particularly atmospheric properties will be dubbed Sofitel Legends, while boutique-style venues will bear the name So by Sofitel. There will also be renovations and new openings.
Mandarin Oriental to launch resort on St Kitts
Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group has announced plans for a new luxury resort on the island of St. Kitts in the British West Indies, set to open in 2010. The 125-room Mandarin Oriental St. Kitts will be located on a 50-acre site at Majors Bay, a private cove on the island's southeast peninsula. It will include a Marina village offering docking spaces for private yachts, a wide range of restaurants and boutiques, a 15,000sq ft spa and an 18-hole golf course. Included in the development will be 20 private Residences at Mandarin Oriental, each approximately 3,000 sq ft.
Golden Tulip opens regional development office in ThailandGolden Tulip has opened a regional development office in Bangkok, Thailand. The development office, which will be operated by the management company Golden Tulip South East Asia, will look to develop and service hotels in the region in countries like Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Burma, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. The management office will look to add hotels from all of Golden Tulip's brands, with a focus on adding economy hotels in the region's capital cities and more upmarket hotels in the various resorts in South East Asia. The new office will be managed by Mr Mark A M van Ogtrop.
Mövenpick to add resort in Thailand
Mövenpick Hotels & Resorts is continuing its expansion in Asia with the opening of a new property in Pattaya in Thailand in 2010. The five-star Mövenpick Resort & Spa Pattaya will include 300 rooms and suites offering sea views. The resort facilities include a main restaurant, offering signature Mövenpick buffets, two speciality restaurants and an entertainment centre. Leisure facilities will include a spa and wellness centre, a fitness centre, swimming pools, tennis courts, water sports and a kids' club.
By Kerstin Kühn