Jumeirah determined to push into Asia-Pacific

10 Aug 2009

Jumeirah Hotels and Resorts is determined to establish presence in Asia-Pacific with its first property in Shanghai set to open by May 2010. The debut of the long-delayed project – also understood to be the Dubai-based chain's launchpad in the region – is to coincide with next year's World Expo.

“We respond to opportunity where it comes,” Gerald Lawless, executive chairman of Jumeirah Group, told Business Traveller. “With the management agreements we have signed so far in China, Thailand, Indonesia and the Maldives, Jumeirah will have 1,300 rooms in its hotels and resorts in the region by the end of 2013.”

The company, whose Burj Al Arab is a landmark in the emirate, recently signed up with Chinese property developer Agile Property Holdings, to develop and manage the Jumeirah Qing Shiu Bay Resort in Hainan. The luxury resort will comprise 250 rooms and 50 private villas, located along a 12km white-sand beach in Hainan Clearwater Bay. Jumeirah’s first beach resort in China is targeting a 2013 opening.

Aside from Shanghai and Hainan, the chain’s ongoing developments in China include Guangzhou and Macau. Elsewhere in Asia, Jumeirah is working on openings in Bali, Phuket and the Maldives, and maintains a wish list of future outposts that include Beijing, Tokyo, Seoul and Hongkong.

“We are actively negotiating with several potential partners around the world, and expect to announce new hotels and resorts,” Lawless said.

While guests can expect upscale amenities and premium services associated with the hotel chain, Jumeirah's Asian properties have been designed to exude individuality and character by adapting distinctive local motifs.

Meanwhile, Lawless added that, in the short term, Jumeirah hopes to have 60 hotels in operations and under development worldwide by 2012. “We have established credentials in the industry and we are confident about the future of top-end luxury hotels like Jumeirah.”

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Gigi Onag

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