Courtyard by Marriott (六福萬怡) aims to swing into profit this year as it has become the flagship property of Leofoo Tourism Group (六福旅遊集團), which has written off losses linked to the Westin Taipei (台北威斯汀六福皇宮), officials said yesterday.
The five-star hotel in the same complex as the Nangang MRT and high-speed rail stations and a shopping mall has a fair chance of reversing losses this year after the group in the first quarter wrote down all losses linked to the Westin Taipei, communications official Grace Huang (黃馨儀) said.
The group, which also owns Leofoo Hotel (六福客棧) in Taipei’s Zhongshan District (中山) and operates Leofoo Village Theme Park (六福村) and the adjacent Leofoo Resort (六福莊) in Hsinchu, expects occupancy rates at Courtyard by Marriott to stay flat at 70 percent this year after an average of 60 percent in the first half of the year, Huang said.
With a focus on business travelers, the hotel would inevitably be affected by the ongoing economic slowdown, although occupancy does climb to 80 percent and 90 percent during major trade shows, Huang said.
Daily room rates for the hotel’s 465 guestrooms should hold steady at NT$5,000 (US$161.02), she added.
The property is now the group’s main priority, because of the closure of the Westin Taipei in December last year and the urban renewal plans for Leofoo Hotel, Huang said.
It aims boost food and beverage sales by taking part in the Taiwan Culinary Exhibition next week, which could generate NT$4 million in restaurant voucher sales, she said.
The target is quite conservative, compared with NT$6 million last year, as the group has to factor in the exit of the Westin Taipei and the economic slowdown, Huang said.
The group would continue to join food and travel shows to improve brand awareness and highlight its support of eco-friendly food and cooking skills, she said.
Leofoo Hotel is due to submit urban renewal documents by October and regulators could wrap up the review by April next year, Huang said, adding that the group has not reached a conclusion about whether to turn the 47-year-old building into office space or a mixed-use complex with hotel rooms.
“Office space appears to be in great demand now, but it is hard to predict the future,” she said.
Leofoo Village Theme Park is looking at a 20 percent increase in ticket sales for the summer with 500,000 visits, Huang said.
The recreational facility has been profitable, but had to help cover the losses made by the Westin Taipei over the years, she added.
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