Accor in Greater China has announced that the group has signed 31 new contracts since the start of 2012. The contracts include one Sofitel, nine Pullman, five Mei Jue (Grand Mercure), one Novotel, as well as 15 ibis projects, thus adding 6,572 new rooms. In all, Accor’s development pipeline in China exceeds 90 new hotels committed.
The Pullman, Mei Jue and ibis hotel brands experienced the strongest demand so far this year, and most of these new contracts are being established in Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities, in line with the group’s overall expansion strategy, which looks also beyond the main cities in the country. This includes hotels such as Pullman Zhoushan Seaview, a 22-storey hotel with sea views for all guest rooms, to open in 2015. The hotel is located in China’s only prefecture-level city consisting solely of islands. The destination is included in the priority group of coastal economic developing cities.
After a major re-engineering that tailored the Grand Mercure brand for the Chinese market announced in February, Mei Jue includes the newly signed Mei Jue Foshan Changcheng, which is situated in the centre of Foshan, in southern Guangdong Province. The brand’s first hotel committed in Foshan is of strategic importance for Accor, as the city has become the third largest manufacturing base in the Pearl River Delta.
Accor has anchored its presence in the key cities of China and deployed an extensive brand portfolio, making the move beyond Tier 2 and into Tier 3 cities easier. In the economy hotel segment, Accor’s ibis hotel brand has 15 new projects committed.
Figures from the China Tourist Hotels’ Association suggest that the economy hotel segment now accounts for 30% of the Chinese mainland’s hotel industry and that the industry still expects huge development potential.