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Friday, May 29, 2009

Raffles Hotels aims to be KL rate leader

The prestigious Raffles Hotels & Resorts expects to be the most expensive hotel in Kuala Lumpur when it opens at Pavilion Kuala Lumpur in 2011.

Raffles is now the rate leader in seven out of the eight markets it is in. In Dubai, the rate leader is the Burj Al Arab in Dubai. In Singapore, Raffles last year closed at an average room rate (ARR) of S$1,000 (RM2,420) per night.

Fairmont Raffles Hotels International (FRHI) executive vice-president David Roberts expects the hotel to have an ARR that's a fifth higher than the leader at that time.

"We will position ourselves as a rate leader," Roberts said.

Currently, the rate leader in the capital is Mandarin Oriental at over RM600 per night.

Roberts was speaking to reporters following an agreement signing ceremony between Raffles Hotel Management and Harmoni Perkasa Sdn Bhd.

Harmoni Perkasa is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Urusharta Cermerlang Sdn Bhd. Pavilion Kuala Lumpur is 51 per cent owned by Urusharta and 49 per cent by the Qatar Investment Authority.

The signing ceremony confirmed a Business Times story in April that Raffles will open at Pavilion Kuala Lumpur in 2011.

Raffles Kuala Lumpur will have 200 rooms and suites measuring a minimum of 50 sq metres - 50 per cent larger than most five-star hotel rooms.

Raffles expects to be able to achieve a gross operating profit of between 35 per cent and 45 per cent in Malaysia. FRHI, meanwhile, has confirmed the opening of 15 more Raffles hotels between 2010 and 2012.

By Business Times (by Vasantha Ganesan)

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