Malaysia’s Swiss-Garden expanding fast

MALAYSIA-based hotel chain Swiss-Garden International will be launching six or seven new properties across Malaysia within the next two to three years. The group is also considering adding a fourth brand to its portfolio of Swiss-Garden, Swiss-Inn and Swiss-Garden Residences properties.

Speaking to TTG Asia e-Daily in Singapore, the company’s newly-appointed group general manager sales & marketing, Francis Lee, said the new properties would be located in destinations such as Malacca, Sabah, Cameron Highlands, Butterworth, Kuantan and near Senai Airport in Johor Bahru.

He said: “For now, our expansion is focused on Malaysia, but if an opportunity to expand overseas presents itself, we will take it. We have a travel lodge in Sydney (Garden-Lodge Sydney), and are, in fact, looking at having properties in Melbourne, Vietnam and China.”

Lee said Swiss-Garden’s expansion was being driven by strong performance and burgeoning demand. “In the first quarter this year, all our hotels enjoyed an average occupancy rate of 80 per cent, and RevPAR grew between eight and 10 per cent. That was largely due to strong support from travel agent partners, corporate clients and online bookings,” he said.

He added: “The Swiss-Garden brand is also fast gaining recognition. Imagine, we opened Swiss-Garden Residences in April, and saw 80 per cent occupancy right away.”

According to Lee, Asian markets make up 50 to 60 per cent of Swiss-Garden’s business. Customers from Australia contribute 20 per cent, and the rest are from Europe.

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