The France-based Accor SA, Europe’s largest hotelier, aims to open 100 new hotels in China within three years, the COO of Accor Asia Pacific Michael Issenberg said.
Issenberg added that the company had opened 66 hotels in China last year and was targeting a similar number this year.
To help meet these numbers, the company launched a customized Mercure brand for the Chinese market. To be called Grand Mercure – “Mei Jue” in Mandarin – the hotels will cater to upscale domestic travelers, offering services such as morning Tai Chi exercises and 24-hour rice porridge.
“The Grand Mercure brand provides Accor with a fresh platform for organic upscale expansion throughout the country,” Accor Greater China Chairman and Chief Operating Officer Sam Shih said.
Accor plans to expand the Grand Mercure network to 65 hotels across tier-one to tier-three cities by 2015, from 10 currently. The firm said in a statement that it has already secured commitments for 10 hotels.
Accor, which owns 4,200 hotels worldwide, recently confirmed its objective of opening 40,000 rooms in 2012. The company operates seven brands and 121 hotels in Greater China.
The announcement follows one by InterContinental Hotels Group, the world’s top hotelier, to launch a new China-specific brand. Accor hopes its new initiative will mean an increased share of a highly competitive market.
photo credit: accor