Leofoo Tourism Group (六福旅遊集團) is to spend NT$1.5 billion (US$49.5 million) to convert the Leofoo Hotel (六福客棧) into offices and expand its theme park in Hsinchu, it said yesterday.
The group — which owns the Courtyard by Marriott Taipei (六福萬怡) in Nangang District (南港), Leofoo Resort (六福莊), Leofoo Village Theme Park (六福村) and other recreational facilities — said it wants to make better use of its real-estate properties in central Taipei and Hsinchu County’s Guansi Township (關西), as well as boost sales of packaged food.
“The group is focused on revitalizing assets this year, starting with the project to renovate the 48-year-old Leofoo Hotel and turn it into a serviced grade-A office building,” Leofoo chairwoman Lulu Chuang (莊豐如) told a news conference in Taipei.
The complex would be Taiwan’s first serviced office building that has eateries, conference spaces, fitness centers, banquet facilities and even guestrooms to meet the needs of tenants, Chuang said.
With 21 floors above ground and five basement floors, it has 6,200 ping (20,460m2) of floor space on a 380 ping plot of land on Changchun Road (長春路) in the city’s Zhongshan District (中山).
Vacancy rates for office space in the vicinity is lower than 5 percent, suggesting strong demand for new office buildings, a trend supported by local companies returning from China to avoid complications from the US-China trade dispute, Chuang said.
While luxury apartments would generate higher sales, an office building promises more utilization flexibility and allows the group to take advantage of its experience from running Westin Taipei and Leofoo Hotel, she said.
It would not rule out devoting partial floors to hotel space if such an arrangement is desirable, she said.
The renovation project might begin in the first quarter of next year, she said.
In addition, the group plans to develop massive plots of land near its Leofoo Village Theme Park in Hsinchu to attract visitors aged 50 or older, Chuang said.
The theme park and an adjacent resort hotel are popular among young parents and their children, she said.
“We aim to expand our clientele to include older visitors who enjoy agricultural and natural scenery,” Chuang said.
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