[photopress:hotels_ritz_carlton_Beijing.jpg,full,alignright]Ritz-Carlton president and chief operating officer, Simon F. Cooper said that the company expects to open seven hotels in China and triple the country’s share of its total revenue to almost 20% by 2010.
The luxury-hotel operator, owned by Marriott International, is opening its fourth China property in Beijing next week, marking the start of a major expansion in mainland China.
Including the new Beijing hotel, which Mr. Cooper said has among the biggest standard-size rooms in Beijing, the company runs 69 hotels and resorts world-wide.
Marriott International, InterContinental Hotels Group PLC and Wyndham Hotels & Ritz-Carlton opened its first China hotel in Shanghai in 1998.
In addition to the Beijing location opening next week, Ritz-Carlton plans to open hotels in Guangzhou, Shenzhen and the southern resort city of Sanya in the next three months.
Simon Cooper said Ritz-Carlton’s growth strategy isn’t only to fill its new hotels with domestic travelers but to build the Ritz-Carlton brand within China so the rising number of outbound Chinese tourists will stay at Ritz-Carlton properties abroad.
He said, ‘I think you’re going to find a very sophisticated outbound Chinese traveler who is going to seek out luxury hotels wherever they go. As people acquire wealth and sophistication, they will graduate’ from staying at low- to mid-price hotels.
Ritz-Carlton’s new hotel in Beijing is fully booked for the Olympics but the company’s goal will be to continue performing after the Olympics. He is optimistic, because, he said, running a hotel in a growing market like Beijing is easier than in mature markets.
Source: Wall Street Journal