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Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Plans to build an Empire of hotels

The Empire Hotel in Subang, Selangor, may be a new player in the market, but plans are already afoot to grow the brand and its business.

The RM60 million hotel is part of the RM250 million Empire Gallery project, which is developed and managed by Mammoth Empire Holdings Bhd.

The Empire Hotel is a 198-room boutique business class hotel that is scheduled to open at the end of this month.

Its general manager, Ng Yee Ming, said the company is looking to open a second boutique hotel in Kuala Lumpur and possibly a third in the suburbs of Selangor.
The group may run as many as three hotels in the next three years.

Although a new hotel brand, Ng feels that it can be successful as the combination of location, product and service will surely lure guests to its doors.

"The hotels will be located in prime areas, and we expect that we will do well with competent people on board," Ng told Business Times in an interview.

"Our focus will be on guest experience," he said, adding that it has hired staff from five-star hotel chain.

The hotel, which has four restaurants, has a lean staff to room ratio of 0.65.

For the maiden Empire Hotel, Ng expects that the hotel will be able to rake in an average room rate (ARR) of between RM230 and RM250 per night and fill 65 per cent of its rooms in the first year of operation.

Should the hotel achieve its projection, it would be a commendable feat, as most hotels in their first year of operations garner about 50 per cent occupancy.

Ng said the optimism stems from the fact that its product is new and the Empire Gallery also houses a mall and offices.

In the first year, the Empire Hotel also aims to achieve gross operating profit (GOP) of 32 per cent. GOP is the gross revenue from rooms, food and beverage, laundry or business centre minus cost of operations like wages, electricity and amenities.

In the second year, the hotel is looking to improve occupancy to 70 per cent and post an ARR of RM250 per night.

The hotel, described as having an artistic feel, plays with a lot of colours. The owners brought in 10 carpenters from China to help with the numerous details in the decoration.

The person behind Mammoth Empire is Datuk Sean Ng and the group's projects include The Ara, The Loft and The Atrium in Bangsar, Kuala Lumpur. It has also done projects in Senawang, Negri Sembilan, and Bandar Baru Bangi, Selangor.

By Business Times

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