The InterContinental Hong Kong has been in the news of late as it prepares to play venue to a dinner celebrating prized vintage wines from French winery Moet & Chandon. The latest on the InterContinental front is that the hotel group has plans of setting up a new upper mid-scale hotel brand in China. The InterContinental Hotels Group plans to launch this new brand by the end of this year.
According to Andrew Cosslett, chief executive of the hotel group, the new line of hotels will be midway between an upscale chain like Crowne Plaza and a luxury line like InterContinental. The UK-based company has been eyeing markets in developing regions like China, India and the Middle East. Apparently, the hotel group is planning to double the volume of their operations in these burgeoning markets in the near future. They believe that China is on track to surpassing the US as the world’s largest hotel market by as soon as 2025. A rising number of travellers, increased Internet access and use, higher life expectancy and a demand for low-cost airlines are fuelling growth in these markets.
The InterContinental Hotels Group is the largest hotel operator in the world when number of rooms is the measure. This Tuesday, the hotel group announced a 38 percent rise in its 2010 net profit – that is a figure of $293 million. Cosslett admitted that 2010 proved a great year for the London-based company. As worldwide economies set off on the road to recovery, InterContinental’s revenue rose by 6 percent. And for now, it has set its eyes on the Chinese market.