Resort design render by Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority
With borders opening and travel starting to return to pre-COVID levels, luxury resort construction is increasing. This is great timing for the APAC hotel industry, with research indicating the APAC hotel and resort market will expand by 2,706 hotels by 2024. Of these, 40% target the five-star segment.
Marriott International Hotels is leading this trend, planning to expand its presence in APAC by close to one hundred new hotels. The company is confident that the APAC region will experience the same trends found in other global markets, including travellers wanting to invest their time and money towards leisure travel and luxury expenses.
Marriott will debut new hotels in South Korea, Australia and six new properties in Japan, aiming to revitalise local sightseeing and rural destinations.
One of Marriott’s major projects opening in 2022 is JW Marriott Jeju, a luxury resort in the UNESCO Natural Heritage Site in Jeju, South Korea. This resort will feature a 210-key hotel and 78 residential units. The design of this hotel honours key aspects of Jeju’s culture, with the design being an abstract representation of the island’s indigenous Choga architecture.
Heritage Inspired Resorts
Resorts emphasising their connection to an area’s history and natural and cultural heritage is a theme being seen across APAC, as according to Commercial Real Estate Services (CBRE), consumers are placing a stronger emphasis on hotel environmental, social and governance (ESG) performance.
Cap Karoso, a luxury resort in Indonesia surrounded by lagoons and traditional communities, is scheduled to hold a soft opening in December. This region, which dates to the Bronze Age and is still home to indigenous art and traditional homes with 25-meter-high roofs that are thought to function as a bridge to the spirit world, is situated on the rocky island of Sumba. This new building incorporates both sustainability and the neighbourhood. Cap Karoso, which will have more than 20 villas and more than 47 rooms, is being constructed next to the island’s biological farm. The farm, which spans three hectares of revitalised land, provides most of the fruits and vegetables used in the hotel.
Meanwhile, Thailand will welcome the Intercontinental Khao Yai National Park Resort in October. In a hilly UNESCO World Heritage Site, this resort is a five-star hotel located inside a converted antique train car.
Award-winning architect and interior designer Bill Bensley built the InterContinental Khao Yai out of sincere respect for the city’s history as a bustling railway station that, during the reign of King Rama V, connected the province to northeast Thailand.
In addition to its 45 exquisite rooms and suites, the hotel, which is located on 100 acres of land, offers 19 vintage railway car accommodations. Guests can also view seven gorgeous lakes and a huge forest with 50,000 trees from the hotel.
Within the APAC hotel and resort industry, there has also been a shift towards integrated resorts (IR). IR are massive hospitality developments anchored on gambling but supplemented by a variety of other leisure and entertainment facilities. Two of these resorts are under construction in Asia.
The Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority (MGTA) is planning to build a $1.5 billion mega-resort beside the Incheon International Airport.
The Inspire Integrated Resort will have a casino open only to foreigners, a water park, shopping mall, theme park and music venue with a 15,000-person capacity.
If the COVID limits are loosened, the first phase of this resort is anticipated to be finished and launched in 2023. Following Paradise City, which opened in 2016, this will be the second integrated resort in Incheon and will firmly establish South Korea as a centre of entertainment.
Lido City, 50 kilometres south of Jakarta, Indonesia, has been promoted as the new destination for top-notch entertainment and hospitality.
The first international standard theme park in Indonesia, an 18-hole golf course, film studio, music and arts centre, data centre, industrial park, university and castle will all be included among the hotels and villas developed by MNC Land.
Lido City, a 3,000-hectare project which is scheduled to be completed in 2027, is expected to draw 6 million to 7 million tourists annually. It will also have access to Cikembar Airport, which is being constructed to the south of the resort.
To meet the growing demand for luxury and desire of consumers wanting to stay with brands they know and trust, two new luxury resorts are set to be operational in 2022.
The picturesque island of Phu Quoc, off the southwest coast of Vietnam, is home to Regent Phu Quoc, offering 126 beautiful villas and 176 smart suites. Visitors can expect sugar-sand beaches, rooftop infinity pools, yoga decks and a sizable kids club at the resort, which became operational in April.
Anantara Koh Yao Yai Resort, located near Phang Bay on Koh Yao Yai Island, halfway between Phuket and Krabi, is scheduled to launch in December in Thailand.
This 138-room resort features seaview suites, a gym centre, water sports centre, organic garden and restaurants. Visitors may immerse themselves in the environment because coconut and rubber plantations as well as nearby fishing towns surround the resorts.