The Rise of Mega Resorts in Asia

With borders reopening and holiday travel once again occurring in Asia, resort construction is underway to meet the rising demand. Check out all the latest in luxury, cultural and integrated resorts coming to the region.
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Resort design rendering by Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority

With borders reopening and travel beginning 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% will aim for five-star quality.  

Marriott International Hotels is leading this trend with plans to expand its presence in APAC by around 100 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 in leisure and luxury.  

Marriott will debut new hotels in South Korea, Australia and six new properties in Japan, aiming to revitalise local and rural sightseeing destinations.  

One of Marriott’s major projects opening in 2022 is JW Marriott Jeju, a luxury resort in Jeju, South Korea, a UNESCO Natural Heritage Site. This resort will feature a 210-room hotel and 78 residential units. The design of this hotel honours key aspects of Jeju’s culture with an abstract representation of the island’s indigenous Choga architecture.  

JW Marriott Jeju – design concept by WATG 
Design rendering by WATG 

Heritage Inspired Resorts

Across APAC, there is a theme of resorts emphasising their connection to an area’s history and natural and cultural heritage, as according to Commercial Real Estate Services (CBRE), consumers are placing a stronger emphasis on hotels’ performance according to environmental, social and governance (ESG) criteria.  

Cap Karoso, a luxury resort in Indonesia surrounded by lagoons and traditional communities, is scheduled to hold a soft opening in December. This region, situated on the rocky island of Sumba, dates back to the Bronze Age and is still home to indigenous art and traditional homes with 25-metre-high roofs that are thought to function as a bridge to the spirit world.This new resort will promote sustainability by utilising the local area and resources.Cap Karoso, which will have more than 20 villas and over 47 rooms, is being constructed next to the island’s biological farm.The farm spans three hectares of revitalised land and will provide most of the fruits and vegetables used in the hotel. 

Cap Karoso – Design Concept by GFAB Architects 
Design rendering by GFAB Architects 

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 railway carriage.  

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 carriage accommodations. Guests can also view seven gorgeous lakes and a huge forest with 50,000 trees from the hotel. 

Intercontinental Khao Yai National Park Resort – Design Concept by Bill Bensley 
Design rendering by Bill Bensley 

Integrated Resorts

Within the APAC hotel and resort industry, there has also been a shift towards integrated resorts (IR). IRs are massive hospitality developments that focus on gambling whilst supplemented by a variety of other leisure and entertainment facilities. Two such resorts are under construction in Asia.  

Inspire Integrated Resort, South Korea: 

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 centre, theme park and music venue with capacity for 15,000 people. 

If the COVID restrictions are relaxed, the first phase of this resort is anticipated to be completed 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 – Design Concept by MNC Group
Design rendering by Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority

Lido City, Indonesia: 

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 scheduled to be completed in 2027, is expected to draw 6-7 million tourists annually. It will also have access to Cikembar Airport, which is being constructed to the south of the resort. 

Lido City – Design Concept by MNC Group 
Design rendering by MNC Group 

Luxury Hotels 

Two new luxury resorts are set to be operational in 2022 to help meet the growing demand for luxury and customers’ desire to stay with brands they know and trust.  

Regent Phu Quoc, Vietnam: 

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 soft white beaches, rooftop infinity pools, yoga decks and a sizeable kids’ club at the resort, which became operational in April. 

Regent Phu Quoc – Concept Design by IHG
Design rendering by IHG 

Anantara Koh Yao Yai, Thailand: 

Anantara Koh Yao Yai Resort, located near Phang Bay on Koh Yao Yai Island, halfway between Phuket and Krabi in Thailand, is scheduled to launch in December. 

This 138-room resort features sea view suites, a gym centre, water sports centre, organic garden and restaurants. Visitors can immerse themselves in the environment thanks to the coconut and rubber plantations as well as nearby fishing towns surrounding the resorts. 

Design rendering of Anantara resort
Design rendering by Anantara Resorts and Villas

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