Chains devise plans for new hotels


NEW YORK -- A number of hotel companies that do business in Asia have announced plans for new properties throughout the region. The following is a sampling of what's happening:

• Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts rebranded the Regent properties in Thailand -- the Regent Bangkok and Regent Chiang Mai -- with the Four Seasons moniker.

The properties were renamed the Four Seasons Hotel Bangkok and Four Seasons Resort Chiang Mai. Four Seasons has managed each of the hotels for more than 10 years.

The 356-room Four Seasons Hotel Bangkok is in the midst of a multimillion-dollar upgrade, with close to $5 million spent during the last two years on new meetings space and a New York-style steakhouse. Plans call for a renovation of the hotel's rooms.

Four Seasons said it will expand in Asia with the opening of the Four Seasons Resort Langkawi in Malaysia next summer and a new hotel in Hong Kong in 2005.

• Bulgari Hotels & Resorts, a joint venture by the Rome-based jeweler Bulgari and the Luxury Group of Marriott International, said it will open its second hotel on the Indonesian island of Bali in mid-2005.

The resort will consist of 58 villas, most of them one-bedroom units with plunge pools and living rooms, as well as a spa, two restaurants and a Bulgari store.

The resort will be built atop cliffs on the southern tip of the Jimbaran Peninsula. It will be owned and developed by MRA Group & Partners, an Indonesian firm that owns the franchise for Bulgari stores in the country.

Marriott's Luxury Group will manage the resort, while Bulgari will license its brand.

Bulgari and Marriott last year announced a plan to create seven five-star, Bulgari-branded hotels over six years. The joint venture's first hotel is scheduled to open in Milan, Italy, early next year.

• Starwood Hotels & Resorts said it will manage a new, 299-room hotel in Singapore under its St. Regis brand.

The St. Regis Singapore is scheduled to open in 2007 on a 180,000-square-foot site in the heart of Singapore's uptown Orchard Road shopping and entertainment district. The hotel will be part of a mixed-use complex that will include apartments.

The St. Regis Singapore will be Starwood's third St. Regis property in Asia and will continue the brand's tradition of having personal butlers assigned to each guest room. The hotel will feature 15,000 square feet of meetings space, four restaurants and a spa and fitness center.

To contact reporter Jorge Sidron, send e-mail to [email protected].

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