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Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Tune Hotels to expand chain

TUNE Hotels is confident of expanding its hotel chain to more than 40 in the country and abroad by the end of next year, group chief executive officer Mark Lankester said.

At least one hotel will be opened every month from September to add to the existing 12 under its name, including two in Bali and one in London.

Lankester said the new hotels would be coming up in Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand, Australia and the United Kingdom, beside expanding locally.

"Locally, we have covered the central, northern, southern, eastern and western parts," he said after the soft launch of the latest Tune Hotels in Kota Baru on Sunday.

Lankester said it would invest substantially for the new hotels as the development cost for a hotel in the country averaged from RM15 million to RM20 million.

In London, he said, the cost could rise to RM70 million for a hotel.

On Tune Hotels Kota Baru, he said it cost the company RM20 million to develop the 173-room hotel which was completed in 11 months to usher in the New Year.

It was built in a partnership with property company HLK Group, which established HLK Ventures Sdn Bhd to exclusively develop the hotel.

"As our sister company AirAsia is doing well with its flights to Kota Baru, it is a natural extension for Tune Group to come to Kota Baru," Lankester said.

"The opening of Tune Hotels here is also an acknowledgement of the increasing importance of Kota Baru as a travel and tourist destination with vibrant commerce and business sectors."

Lankester said although the hotel chain was targetted at leisure travellers who accounted for about 70 per cent presently, it was drawing an increasing number of guests from the business sector.

"Business organisations need their people to travel all over the country but to keep down their costs, they are putting up at Tune Hotels," he said.

On a related note, Lankester said Tune Hotels had eliminated administration fees for room reservation across all of its hotels effective from January 5.

"As we open more hotels, we have become more cost efficient. We have found that the fees are no longer relevant and the savings will be passed on to our guests," he said.

By Business Times

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