Jumeirah begins Asian expansion

30 Nov 2016 by Tamsin Cocks

Jumeirah Group, the Dubai-based luxury hotel group, is ready to increase its footprint in Asia with plans to launch at least one hotel per annum for the next five years.

The group will be focusing on China, with eight of the ten new Asia-based developments to be located here including openings scheduled for Nanjing (2017) Hangzhou (2018) Guangzhou (2019) and Wuhan (2020). Additional properties in the Chinese pipeline include hotels in Sanya, Haikou, Macau, and Zhejiang.

Jumeirah will also be opening a leisure-focused resort destination in Bali by early 2018, plus a hotel in a mixed-use development in Kuala Lumpur in 2020.

The group’s first Asian property, the Jumeirah Himalayas Hotel Shanghai, opened in 2011 but has remained alone until now.

Shafi Syed, group chief development officer, explained the strategy: “We’ve spent time establishing ourselves with one property in Asia, and given ourselves enough time to make that property a success, then gradually over the next four to five years we’ll see a property open every year.

“Having just 22 hotels in 20 years allows us to focus on each property when it opens. If you look at many luxury hotels, expansion has been so rapid it’s hard to keep levels of service consistent. We’re very aware we need to grow, but we need to grow at our own pace.”

The upcoming Jumeirah Nanjing is located in the Hexi new business district, approximately 40 minutes’ drive from the airport and a one-hour train ride from Shanghai, in close proximity to office buildings and a conference centre.

The building has been designed by Zaha Hadid, and comprises two towers with a smaller structure, bearing the distinctive futuristic, curved aesthetic of the late architectural star.

“It will be a very unique opening for us and a great legacy that we’re very proud of,” commented Syed.

The new property will offer 250 rooms, including 32 suites. F&B facilities will include an all-day dining and Chinese specialty restaurant, café, lobby lounge, tea lounge and bar.

Meanwhile, business facilities will comprise a junior ballroom, executive club lounge and business centre. A fitness centre, Talise Spa and an indoor swimming pool make up the leisure offering.

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