Chinese Home Comforts

There has been a lot of industry discussion and debate over the past few years about how hotels can make the most of theburgeoning Chinese middle classwho are travelling abroad in ever larger numbers, and spending considerable sums wherever they go. In the UK in particular, the industry has lobbied to get visa restrictions on Chinese visitors lifted to enable the industry here to compete on a level playing field with Schengen countries.

Understandably, there has also been a spotlight on the huge amount of investment coming from China in to the European hotel sector.

But what has gone largely unremarked here, is the rapid growth of the Chinese domestic hotel sector, which is maturing fast and is home to both local and international brands.

Narada Boutique Hotels’ launch of its new Pagoda brand is the latest development in a vibrant and fast evolving market. Over the last year, FRHI has launched its Neqta brand for Chinese millennial travellers, local operators such as Sino Hotels andCachet Hotel Group have expanded their footprint, and perhaps the ultimate seal of approval, Marriott has taken its Ian Schrager-led design brand Edition to China.

While the Chinese are very keen to travel overseas, it’s important to remember that extra effort will be needed to attract them in future, as the options for domestic travel and leisure become much more varied and tempting for them.

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