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Monday, June 15, 2009

Three-star Hotel Sentral targets budget travellers

HOTEL Sentral (KL) Sdn Bhd, a privately-held company controlled by the Ta family, has opened the RM80 million Hotel Sentral, a three-star property in Brickfields, Kuala Lumpur, aimed at budget travellers.

The 192-room 16-storey hotel is located behind the monorail station, which is opposite the Kuala Lumpur Sentral development.

The company's managing director and founder May Ta said she has no qualms about opening the hotel now eventhough city hotels are suffering from low occupancy due to poor market sentiments.

Ta told Business Times that the company is branding the property as a value-for-money destination.

"While we are a three-star property, we are providing in-room safe, an LCD flat screen television in each room, and WIFI services. The hotel is located within walking distance to KL Sentral and public transporation," Ta said.

Walk-in room rates start from as low as RM138 nett for a standard room, to RM345 nett for an executive suite.

Ta added that Hotel Sentral is expected to achieve 60 per cent occupancy at an average room rate of RM110 by December 31 2009.

"We have been operating for just a month and are running at more than 60 per cent currently. We are enjoying from AirAsia's night flights. The first place travellers want to go to upon reaching KL Sentral is to the nearest hotel. This will contribute to growth for the property," Ta said.

Since its opening, Hotel Sentral has received guests from New Zealand, Australia, Japan and India.

Ta said she is optimistic the company will be able to recoup its investments in the hotel over the next 8-10 years.

"Brickfields will be the future Little India and this will encourage more travellers to come towards this part of Kuala Lumpur. We will be investing a lot over the next one year to position the hotel," she said, adding that the rich heritage of Brickfields will bring customers to the hotel's doorstep.

The hotel was officially opened by former Tourism Minister Datuk Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor on Saturday, witnessed by ex-Inspector General of Police Malaysia Tan Sri Norian Mai, and Datuk Ruslin Hasan, former mayor of Kuala Lumpur.

Ta's father, Tan Sri Ta Kin Yan was also present.

By Business Times (by Sharen Kaur)

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