Eastern Media International Corp (EMG, 東森國際) yesterday signed a management contract with Formosa International Hotels Corp (FIH, 晶華國際酒店集團) to open a hotel under the Silks X brand that could start operations in 2025.
The e-commerce and home shopping operator is to build the hotel in a mixed-use complex near the Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport MRT line’s Linkou Station with a budget of NT$1 billion (US$35.37 million), EMG chairman Gary Wang (王令麟) told a news conference.
The hotel of 200 guest rooms would occupy the 26th to 33rd floors of a complex under construction, which would also house movie theaters, retail stores, banquet facilities and office space for the group’s beauty and direct sales arms, Wang said.
EMG owns e-commerce platform ETMall (東森購物), Hong Kong-listed Natural Beauty Bio-Technology Ltd (自然美), and warehouses at the Taichung and Kaohsiung harbors for the storage of agricultural products. It also has a business that imports grain and consumer electronic products.
Wang said that he aims to turn the complex into a local version of Cannes, France, with the assistance of the adjacent Mitsui Outlet Park (三井) and Sanlih Entertainment Television (三立), which is developing a mixed-use complex in the neighborhood.
EMG is to pour NT$12 billion into building the complex, which could attract 10 million visitors and generate more than NT$8 billion in revenue per year, Wang said.
“You cannot find hotels in Cannes or Hollywood that generate losses,” Wang said. “There will more likely be a shortage of rooms after the complex’s construction.”
The Silks X hotel is not the first time that EMG has ventured into the hospitality business, as the group owns unprofitable resort properties, one in Yilan and another in Taoyuan.
However, EMG plans to leave them idle for the moment, Wang said, adding that real-estate properties in good locations tend to increase in value over time.
Wang said that EMG partnered with FIH because he is a loyal customer at the Regent Taipei (台北晶華酒店), FIH’s flagship property, and would give the hotel group complete control in designing, decorating and operating the Silks X.
FIH chairman Steve Pan (潘思亮) said that the Silks X would be the first in the post-pandemic era, after COVID-19 played havoc on the hospitality industry worldwide.
FIH, which operates nearly 1,000 guestrooms across Taiwan under the Silks Place, Wellspring and Just Sleep brands, created a new brand to suit EMG’s new property that is to feature fun, fashion and vitality.
While it is premature to set room rates for Silks X, Pan said that the hotel would doubtless have the highest rates in New Taipei City.
FIH is to open a new Just Sleep in Tainan next quarter, and is in talks over more properties across Taiwan and overseas, Pan said.
Hotels in the greater Taipei area are likely to continue to struggle this year amid international travel bans, but things might return to normal next year, Pan added.
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