What’s in store for luxury travel in Asia Pacific post-pandemic?


After more than two years of pandemic lockdown, revenge travel is at an all-time high – travellers are taking to the skies in droves. Having had to deal with the uncertainties of border restrictions over the last couple of years, there’s no time like the present to embark on that much-awaited vacation.

Which is why the revival of the travel industry is well underway, especially across the luxury sector. The hospitality industry is particularly confident about recovery in Asia Pacific, with several hotel chains announcing ambitious expansion plans in the region.

Global hospitality company Hilton in August 2022 announced six new signings in Asia Pacific across its luxury brands. These include the Waldorf Astoria Kuala Lumpur and Waldorf Astoria Jakarta; both hotels are expected to open in 2024. A year later in 2025, Japan will also welcome the first Waldorf Astoria hotel in Osaka. In 2026, Hilton will open the Waldorf Astoria Sydney.

Conrad Kuala Lumpur is slated to open in 2023, while the Conrad Nagoya will open in 2026. The first LXR-branded resort in Southeast Asia will also open in Bali in 2023. In China, Hilton is set to debut the Conrad Chongqing and Conrad Shenzhen in 2023, and the Waldorf Astoria Xi’an in 2025.

THE ASIA PACIFIC POTENTIAL

“Ultimately, Asia Pacific is the future of luxury travel. We are in the epicentre of luxury. Luxury hospitality was born in Asia decades ago,” said Nils-Arne Schroeder, Hilton’s vice-president of luxury, Asia Pacific. Schroeder is confident that pent-up demand for travel in the region will drive recovery. “A lot of international travel is coming into Asia Pacific from the US and Europe. The borders will open for every country again. At one stage, China will open as well. People will not postpone their travel anymore because they know borders can close at any time.”

Other hotel chains are also poised to expand their presence in the region. Marriott International expects to open 14 additional luxury properties in Asia Pacific by the end of 2023, the group announced. These include the JW Marriott Khao Lak Resort Suites by end 2022, The Ritz-Carlton Fukuoka in 2023, and Southeast Asia’s first Edition hotel in Singapore in 2023.

Read the full article at Channel News Asia

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