Singapore’s Optimistic Tourism Forecast

Asia-Pacific
5 minutes

Singapore said it is expecting between 12 million and 14 million international visitor arrivals in 2023. That would be more than double the 6.3 million final tally of visitors in 2022 but below the 19.1 million that visited in 2019. The Singapore Tourism Board expects tourism receipts to reach S$18 billion to S$21 billion, up from the S$13.8 billion to S$14.3 billion the STB believes will be the final number for 2022. The growth in visitation and tourism spending is expected to be driven by increasing flight connectivity and capacity as well as China’s recent reopening. The STB said they plan to expand their partnerships, build up a rich year-round calendar of events, ramp up investment in new and refreshed products and experiences and continue to support industry efforts to build the capabilities to meet consumer demand. They expect tourism activity to return to pre-pandemic levels in 2024. As for hotel occupancy, STB said citywide reached 79.1% in 2022, not far from 2019’s 87.3%. Average room rates were up 17% to S$260. Analyst reports suggest that so far, the rebound from Chinese visitation is being led by business travelers and high-end tourists. They do not expect mass market tourism to resume significantly just yet amid economic uncertainty and limited flights. 2Q or the second half of 2023 is when they expect to see recovery. The STB is hoping to see China arrivals recover to between 30% and 60% of pre-Covid levels.

Sortis Holdings, Inc. is acquiring boutique hotel company Ace Group International and its management company, Atelier Ace. The $85 million, all-cash deal is expected to close at the end of this first quarter of 2023. The acquisition includes 12 hotels, 10 Ace Hotel properties in Kyoto, Sydney, Los Angeles, Brooklyn, Seattle, NY as well as the hospitality brands Sister City and Maison de la Luz. Ace has several hotels under development in Hollywood, Seattle, Nashville and Carpinteria. The combined entity of Ace Group and Sortis Holdings will have 15 hotels under management a robust pipeline.

Yesterday we reported on the Wyndham Danang Golden Bay in Vietnam and today we cover the Wyndham Vuon Vua Thanh Thuy. These are Wyndham’s thirteenth and fourteenth hotels in Vietnam. The hotel includes stylishly designed villas, which surround different lotus lakes. In the middle of the resort are hot mineral pools to soak in. The resort amenities include 400-meter-square meeting space, golf and entertainment, spa wellness facilities and more.

The 140-room InterContinental Double Bay in Sydney, Australia, has been listed for sale with a price tag of A$240 million. The hotel is the first major hotel offering of the year in Australia.

A new 4.5 star boutique hotel at Tonsley in Adelaide, Australia is now open. La Loft is Tonsley’s first hotel, featuring 88 rooms located just meters away from the District’s heart of innovation, the Main Assembly Building. The six-story hotel comprises 15 one-bedroom apartments for extended stays and 73 studio suites for shorter stays. A ground-floor bar and dining area is also featured. La Loft is also the first commercial property connected to the blended hydrogen gas network at Tonsley’s Hydrogen Park SA.

Radium Development Bhd launched its first property called the R Suites Chancery Residences in Ampang, Selangor in Malaysia. The 2.18-acre freehold project comprises 944 residential suites, commercial spaces, exclusive facilities and amenities, and a 145-room hotel which will be managed by an independent Kuala Lumpur-based hotel brand. Chancery Residences offers residential suites with sizes ranging from 452 square feet to 861 square feet, focusing on multi-functional living spaces. Suites Series A and B offer modern and stylish studio-style units while Suite Series C offers two bed-two bath suites. The residences and future hotel is located 5kim from KLCC and KL’s Golden Triangle.

Indian Hotels Company signed two Taj-branded resort on the islands of Suheli and Kadmat in Lakshadweep in India. The greenfield projects are slated to open in 2026 and will be developed by IHCL. Suheli is a ring-shaped island with a coral reef rim that encircles a lagoon and is rich in marine life. The Taj at Suheli will have 110 rooms including 60 villas on the beach and 50 water villas. Kadmat Island, also known as Cardamom Island, is a marine protected area with seagrass beds, a nestling ground for marine turtles. Featuring 110 rooms, the Taj hotel at Kadmat will comprise 75 beach villas and 35 water villas. Lakshadweep is India’s smallest Union Territory, an archipelago of 36 islands in the Arabian Sea.

Fortune Hotels, a member of ITC’s hotel group, announced the signing of a new property in Siliguri, West Bengal in India. The upscale Fortune Select hotel is situated a 15-minute drive from the Siliguri airport and is set to open in December 2025. The new hotel will offer 120 well-appointed rooms, strategically located on Sevoke road. The hotel will include an all-day diner, a specialty fine dining restaurant, a trendy bar, large banquets and a swimming pool. The greenfield project is Fortune Hotel’s third in the state of West Bengal.

Personnel Moves

Hilton announced the appointment of Brian Tong as Area General Manager for Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts for Greater China and Mongolia. Today there are four properties operating in Shanghai, Beijing, Xiamen and Chengdu with two other properties in the pipeline to open in Shanghai’s Qiantan and Xi’an in 2025. Tong was previously engaged in senior management roles in several international luxury hotel brands in the Asia Pacific region. He also holds the General Manager role for Waldorf Astoria Shanghai on the Bund.

Ms Eu Chin Fen, currently CEO of the Managers, has been appointed as CEO of Frasers Hospitality, a strategic business unit of Frasers Property. She will join the Frasers Property Group Executive Leadership Team. In her new appointment, Ms Eu will be responsible for the group’s hospitality business unit, overseeing it from investment and business development, to global expansion of its chain of serviced residences and hotels worldwide. From July 2019 to April 2021, Eu was Chief Investment Officer of Frasers Hospitality International Pte Ltd.

Pro-Invest Hotels announced the appointments of Emily Foster as Head of Commercial and Caleb Morris as Director of Hotel Openings and Revenue Strategy. Foster will be responsible for the key areas of revenue management, reservation, sales, marketing and PR while also managing the commercial direction and revenue delivery for Pro-invest Hotels and Vista Hospitality Group. Morris will be responsible for managing the hotel openings across the portfolio.