Wyndham Hotel Group’s is expanding aggressively in Asia and last week signed deals for 16 new properties across India and Indonesia.
Business Traveller previously reported that the group was seeking opportunities to grow in India (see here). Last week it announced plans to open 12 properties across the country in the next five years.
In January 2013 it will open a 113-room Ramada mid-range brand hotel in the east coast city of Chennai, followed by a 76-room Ramada in the north eastern city of Jamshedpur at the end of the year. Two more Ramadas will open in Kolkata and Trivandrum during 2015.
The group has also announced it has signed deals to open six of its mid-level, family-orientated Howard Johnson hotels between 2015 and 2017 in Mumbai, Hyderabad, Lucknow, Shirdi, Tirupati, and Bhubaneswar.
Frank Trampert, managing director Asia for Wyndham Hotel Group, said they had chosen to expand the Howard Johnson brand in India partly because of how well known it was in the subcontinent. “It’s an incredibly well recognised hotel brand,” he said. “The brand recognition of Howard Johnson in the US also carries into India. There’s a lot of travel between India and the US.”
Elements of the brand such as the food and beverage offerings will be customised to suit the Indian market, according to Trampert.
In 2017, the group also plans to open its first extended stay Hawthorn Suites property in India, with a 400-suite property in the far north eastern city of Amritsar. “Hawthorne Suites is a nice product for us because it fills the gap between serviced apartment and the hotel business,” Trampert said.
In Indonesia, Wyndham plans to open three Howard Johnson brand hotels in January 2015. There will be a 350-room property in Bali, a 288-room property in Makassar, and a 275-room hotel in Surabaya. In the same month, the group also plans to open an 84-room Ramada brand hotel in the Lake Buyan area of Bali.
Trampert also said the group would continue to expand in China, with a focus on the third-tier cities where they did not yet have such a large presence. He said that the Super 8 brand, which is their dominant brand in the country, was aimed largely at domestic travellers, especially smaller businesses with lower travel budgets.
Alongside this, Trampert said the group was continuing to look for opportunities to expand in several other countries around the region.
“Across Asia the markets we are focusing on are China, India, Thailand, Indonesia,” he said. “And then I would say opportunistic markets. The Philippines remains on the radar screens for sure and then places like Vietnam and Myanmar.”