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Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Swiss-Belhotel sees ringing success

The name Swiss-Belhotel International (SBI) may not ring a bell with most Malaysians, but it soon will.

This Hong Kong-based hotel management company, which is yet to open its first Malaysian hotel, will by end-2010 operate some 1,800 rooms in Malaysia and create between 2,000 and 2,500 jobs in the market.

It is also in talks with other developers that will lock another 1,000 rooms under its management by end-2011.

Given the anticipated openings, it is not surprising that SBI's director of projects and developments for Malaysia Carlos Velho expects that Malaysia will be the largest profit contributor to the group in two years.

"We are confident that Malaysia in the next two years will be the biggest net profit churner for the group," he said, adding that now the group's major contribution comes from Indonesia.

SBI manages 26 hotels in 13 countries. Another 26 are under development.

"We are negotiating for openings in Johor, Sarawak, Penang and Langkawi," Velho said, adding that it was close to signing on the dotted lines for all these deals.

The new projects are either four-star or five-star properties with 300 rooms on average and are slated for opening in 2011 and 2012.

Founded in 1987, Swiss-Belhotel today comprises Swiss-Grand (for five-star and boutique brands) and Swiss-Belhotel (for four- and five-star brands).

In more recent years, it created Swiss-Inn and Swiss-Express brands for three- and two-star operations.

The confirmed openings in Malaysia are Golden Palm Tree Sea Villas and Spa, Swiss-Belhotel Mont Kiara Suites and Residences, Swiss-Belhotel Zenith Kuantan and Grand Swiss-Belhotel Kota Kinabalu.

By Business Times (by Vasantha Ganesan) (Posted on 22 June 2009)

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