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Hotel chains eye Bangladesh market

  • Published at 05:29 pm September 7th, 2013
Hotel chains eye Bangladesh market

Ten more five-star hotels in Dhaka and Chittagong are going to be built in Bangladesh as demand for accommodation escalating with shining economic performance.

Frequent visits by increased number of the foreign businessmen coupled with hosting of international sports events has helped boost the demand, industry insiders said.

A number of international hotel chains and local conglomerates will jointly establish the hotels likely by next 2-3 years.

Of them, Le Meridien is now under construction at the capital’s Nikunjo along the Airport road, which was scheduled to open in July.

Best Holdings Ltd, a local concern of Metro Group, is constructing the building with 304 rooms. 

Other hotels include Marriott International, Sheraton, Westin, Novotel and Hilton, among others.

Bangladesh presently has four five-star hotels with a total of nearly 1,000 luxury rooms. The annual occupancy rate on an average is 55-60%, said the industry insiders.

The US-based Starwood Hotels and Resorts acquired the French Le Meridien in December last year.

Besides, the local Jamuna Builders Ltd signed a deal with another US-based hotel chain Marriott International to set up a 700-room luxury hotel in Dhaka.

The company inked another deal in early 2012 with Pacific Jeans for a 250-room luxury hotel in Chittagong.

“Bangladesh has a thriving economy, with the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) growing at about 6% for the past five years,” said Simon Cooper, President of Marriott International for the Asia-Pacific region.

He said Dhaka is currently underserved in terms of quality hotel accommodation, but it is set to grow strongly in the near future.

According to Bangladesh Parjatan Corporation (BPC) officials, roughly 500,000 foreigners arrived in Bangladesh in 2012 with above 80% of them on business and official tours and the remaining as tourists.

Unique Hotel and Resorts Ltd which owns Westin Dhaka will also build a second Westin in Dhaka’s Banani area.

“The process to start works is at final stage now,” said Mustafa Noor E Safa recently, when he was marketing head of Westin Hotel.

In March, Unique Hotel and Resorts Ltd signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Starwood Hotels and Resorts on management of these properties.

In September last year, Hilton Worldwide signed a management agreement with Premier Hotels and Resorts to manage Hilton Dhaka to be built at Gulshan.

The 250-room Hilton Hotel is expected to be launched in 2015.

Dhaka Sheraton Hotel will be built by a local business company at a place between Bashundhara residential area and Purbachal. Besides, Holiday Inn will be developed at Tejgaon Industrial Area.

A leading Bangladeshi footwear exporter has also planned to build Novotel Hotel in Dhaka. The Novotel Hotel is a subsidiary of the Accor Group of France.

Besides, the Accor in a statement announced that it would start operating two hotels under management contracts.

The hotels are Novotel Dhaka Gulshan Avenue in the capital and Novotel Chittagong in the port city. There will be a total of over 350 rooms in the two hotels.

Bangladesh will be the Accor’s 17th market in the Asia-Pacific region.

“The two properties will add much-needed hotel inventory to Bangladesh’s two largest cities– Dhaka and Chittagong,” said Michael Issenberg, chairman and chief operating officer, Accor Asia-Pacific, in a statement.

“We see Bangladesh as a tremendous opportunity for expansion, given the country’s growing manufacturing presence in the region.”

About the flurry of five-star hotels in the country, Marketing Communications Manager at Ruposhi Bangla Hotel Shahidus Sadeque said: “With the expansion of Bangladesh’s economy, the visit of foreign businesses is now on the rise, which increased the demand for luxury hotels.”

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