Taiwan Land Development Corp (TLDC, 台灣土地開發) yesterday inked a pact with French hospitality operator Accor SA to run its planned hotel in Hualien under the Ibis brand.
The two sides signed the agreement in Taipei to turn a 10-story building into a budget hotel with 706 rooms, which would be the largest in eastern Taiwan, TLDC chairman Chiu Fu-sheng (邱復生) said.
“We are upbeat about the hospitality industry in Hualien, which might see a large increase in domestic and foreign tourists following the completion of the Suhua Highway Improvement Project early next year,” Chiu told a news conference.
The project would significantly cut travel time between Taipei and Hualien County by car, just as the Hsuehshan Tunnel (雪山隧道) has benefited Yilan County, Chiu said.
TLDC has started construction on the new lodging facility on a plot larger than 3,000 ping (9,917m2) next to its shopping mall, New Paradiso (新天堂樂園), he said.
The use of the Ibis brand is intended to take advantage of its more than 100 million members, modern design and quality service, the local developer said.
There are 1,170 Ibis hotels in 66 nations. Ibis hotels are generally seen as emphasizing economy.
Marc Cherrier, chief operating officer of the group’s midscale and upscale brands, said that the collaboration marks the beginning of a strategic partnership to develop more Accor hotels.
“Ibis is part of Accor and strives to offer guests modernity, comfort and availability,” Cherrier said.
Accor is the world’s third-largest hotel chain with 4,800 lodging facilities under the Mercure, Novotel, Grand Mercure and Ibis brands, Cherrier said.
Ibis is the fourth-largest budget hotel brand globally with 150,000 rooms, Cheerier said, adding that all facilities have welcoming common areas and a modern food and beverage facility named Ibis Kitchen.
Accor managing director for Taiwan Mike Chen (陳泓鍵) said that Ibis room rates vary in different places, but average US$150 per night in South Korea and Hong Kong.
Ibis Hualien would seek to keep daily room rates at US$100, given its location away from main cities, Chen said.
Chiu said that he favors a flexible scheme to maximize occupancy rates for the hotel, which is slated to open late next year or in early 2021.
The hotel would hire as few employees as possible to provide greater privacy, which technology enables, he added.
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