Thai hotel operator Centara Hotels & Resorts is planning a significant expansion of its portfolio in Vietnam, with the goal of opening at least 20 new hotels across the country in the next five years.
The hotel company already manages the Centara Sandy Beach Resort Danang, while its parent company and Thai conglomerate Central Group operates a range of retail brands across Vietnam, including GO! (formerly BigC Vietnam), LanChi Mart, B2S, Robins, SuperSports, Home Mart and Nguyen Kim.
Targeting a fast expansion of its hotel portfolio in Vietnam, Centara is eyeing destinations in the country’s main economic hubs such as Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC), Hanoi and Haiphong, and other high-growth areas like Danang, Phu Quoc, Nha Trang, Cam Ranh and Hoi An.
It also sees strong potential in the southern coastal areas of Vung Tau, Ho Tram and Mui Ne, due to new road infrastructure connecting the region with HCMC and the development of a major new airport in nearby Dong Nai province.
Centara says there are opportunities to expand all six of its brands in Vietnam, namely Centara Grand, Centara, Centara Residences & Suites, Centara Boutique Collection, Centra by Centara and its latest concept, Cosi, for freedom-loving and tech-savvy travellers.
Commenting on the potentials in the country, Thirayuth Chirathivat, CEO, Centara Hotels & Resorts, said: “Vietnam’s tourism industry enjoyed a great year in 2018 and we expect this to continue for many years to come. Boosted by booming intra-Asian travel, more relaxed visa policies and impressive improvements to transport infrastructure, the country is already well on track towards another record-breaking tourism year in 2019.”
International visitor arrivals to Vietnam reached a record total of 15.5 million in 2018, the majority of which came from Asia, a region where Centara feels it has strong recall. This upward surge is continuing in 2019; data from the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism (VNAT) reveals that almost six million overseas travellers visited the country in the first four months of this year.
Positive tourism trends are driving demand for new hotels and resorts. Recent data from industry analysts STR shows that over 23,000 new hotel rooms are currently being constructed in Vietnam.
Centara’s focus on Vietnam will form an important part of its global strategic vision, which includes the overall goal of doubling its total hotel portfolio by 2022. At present, the company has 71 hotels and resorts either operating or in the pipeline worldwide, comprising over 13,000 rooms. It has hotels and resorts in South-east Asia (including Thailand, Laos and Vietnam), the Middle East, Sri Lanka and the Maldives.