Kuala Lumpur is main beneficiary, while the rest are in Malacca and Sabah.
The Malaysian capital will witness the opening of five new properties (2,119 rooms) this year, widening the choice of hotels for travellers, especially for those seeking more economical options.
Leading the pack is Accor, with an ambitious plan to open 10 more hotels by 2014, adding a total of 1,224 rooms. It currently has four properties in Malaysia. More significantly, the hotel group will enter the economy segment in Malaysia this year, with the introduction of the Ibis brand.
Vice president of Accor-Malaysia, Indonesia & Singapore, Gerard Guillouet, said the company aimed to be the leading international hotel operator in Malaysia by 2015.
“These 10 new properties bear testimony to Accor’s belief that Malaysia is set to be among the leaders within the tourism and hospitality industries in the region,” he added.
The first of these properties will be the 513-room Pullman Kuala Lumpur Bangsar, due to open by mid-2012.
Two Ibis Styles properties will also come onstream this year, located in the Frasers Business Park (500 rooms) and Cheras (156 rooms).
Other hotels making their way to Kuala Lumpur are the D’Tiara Amanah Raya Hotel Suites in the transport hub of Sentral (507 rooms) and the Park Regis in the city centre (443 rooms). In the satellite town of Petaling Jaya, the Royal Bintang Surian is slated to open with 300 rooms.
Luxury Tours Malaysia senior manager Arokia Das Anthony said the developments would expand available options for travel professionals, pointing out that the arrival of Ibis Styles was especially noteworthy.
“There are not many international three-star hotel brands in the city. It will definitely have an impact,” he added.
Mayflower Acme Tours headinbound division, international sales, Andy Soo, said: “Looking at their locations in the golden triangle (CBD), they will be targeting corporate and business travellers. Having more international brand names is always a winner. More is better.”
Anthony said Luxury Tours had benefitted from the three hotels which opened in 2011 – Furama, Pudu Central and My Hotel.
“They were excellent additions to the city and offered excellent rates,” he said.
However, rates were not expected to soften with the arrival of new properties despite an oversupply in the city, said the two travel experts.
“Online bookings have changed the name of the game. Rates are going to be standard from about RM150 (US$50) for a three-star hotel to RM300 upwards for a five-star hotel,” Anthony explained.
Outside of Kuala Lumpur, the rest of the new openings for 2012 will be in the highly popular tourist destinations of Sabah and Malacca.
In Malacca, the Best Western Plus Riverside Hotel (170 rooms) and Hatten Hotel (700 rooms) are due to open.
And in Sabah, the following openings are anticipated: Best Western Sandakan Hotel and Residence (170 rooms); Grand Uno Hotel & Residence, South China Sea Place, Kota Kinabalu (167 rooms); and Gaya Island Resort, Borneo (121 rooms).
By N. Nithiyananthan