Glenn de Souza
Best Western marks decade in Asia Pacific
Bangkok, April 3, 2013
Best Western International (BWI), a leading global hotel chain, recently held an event in Bangkok to mark more than a decade of operations in Asia Pacific.
The ‘Oriental Reflections: Passage to the Next Decade’ celebration gathered Best Western’s management, staff, hotel owners, travel industry partners and members of the media for an evening of glitz and glamour.
The evening event was held at Zense restaurant – the 17th floor gourmet deck and lounge which sits at the top of Bangkok’s CentralWorld shopping mall and overlooks the city.
“The last 10 years has been an extraordinary period of growth for Best Western International,” said Glenn de Souza, Best Western’s vice president of International Operations – Asia & Middle East.
“When we opened our Asia Pacific regional headquarters in Bangkok in 2001, we had just a small handful of hotels. Now, 10 years later, we have more than 200 properties either operational or in the pipeline, from Bangkok to Beijing, Bali to Bahrain.
“We have forged some wonderful, deep-rooted partnership and relationships in the region, and this event is our chance to say “thank you”. We could not have achieved our Asian success without all of our partners, and look forward to developing these relationships further in the next ten years,” de Souza added.
Looking forward to the next decade, Best Western International is targeting a major increase in its regional portfolio, taking its portfolio to 350 hotels in Asia and the Middle East.
In the next few years, the company plans to add at least 15 new hotels in Indonesia and 10 in Saudi Arabia, while doubling its portfolio in Malaysia and the Philippines, opening its first hotels in Nepal, Iraq, and Sri Lanka, and becoming the largest international hotel operator in Bangladesh.
De Souza also recently outlined plans to enter Myanmar, which would mean Best Western International is present in nine out of the ten members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).
Khachorndej Harnsakda, general manager of the Best Western Mayfair Suites in Bangkok, said: “Comparing to our competitors around the area, we received higher occupancy through the years and a greater market share from Europe. This all comes down to the good name of the brand and the global distribution channels that the company offers.”
This optimism is also being felt in Indonesia, where Best Western will more than quadruple its hotel collection over the next few years, a statement said.
Iwanto Hartojo, Best Western’s area developer for Indonesia, said: “We are very confident in the Best Western brand. In the past, when the brand first came to Indonesia, it was quite difficult since we had to introduce people to our products.”
“Nowadays, investors walk in with interest about our brand, because people know what to expect. We foresee great expansion in Indonesia this year and we will keep on growing.” – TradeArabia News Service