Accor builds up MGallery boutique portfolio

26 May 2009

Travellers wanting individuality, influenced by heritage, character, design and location in their choice of hotel, may want to try Accor's newest brand tier MGallery.

Created from a collection of properties from the Accor network, MGallery was launched in 2008, beginning with eight properties including the Grand Hotel Melbourne, Hotel am Konzerthaus in Vienna and the Baltimore in Paris. The Asian portfolio currently boasts the newly constructed VIE Hotel in Bangkok, Songtsam Retreat and Spa in Shangri-La and the historic Phoenix Hotel.

Graham Wilson, Accor's Asia-Pacific vice-president marketing, said MGallery addressed a growing travel segment that were interested in the freedom to make "lifestyle choices" and "wanted a much more intimate experience from their hotels". Accor, he added, had properties that fulfilled these demands, but they went under different brand names of the group. MGallery consolidates and strengthens Accor's positioning in the upscale boutique niche.

MGallery also addresses the concerns of the small hotel owners, Wilson said. "When times are tough, survival depends on are factors such as distribution, sales, marketing, IT support and training, and that's where we, at Accor, come in. We want these hotels to retain their character, and their name which already has equity in the market."

In 2007, Accor redefined its brand portfolio with these initiatives among others: moving Sofitel from upscale to the luxury category; relaunching the upscale Pullman brand with a strong meetings component; releasing a new generation of the three-star Ibis hotels; and introducing MGallery and another budget label All Seasons (which like sister Ibis offers good value for money but differs in style).

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Margie T Logarta

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