GHM announces plans to expand outside Asia
30 January 2012 07:27:02 GMT
Luxury resort and hotel group GHM, has announced plans for new boutique properties in locales well beyond its traditional geographic base in Southeast Asia.
Over the next four years, as new hotels come online in China and Switzerland, in India and the United Arab Emirates, GHM expects to double the size of its portfolio.
The developments include the following:
• Two properties, in Suzhou, China and Andermatt, Switzerland, are now under construction and expected to open in late 2012 / early 2013 and the winter of 2013, respectively.
• In Kona, Hawaii GHM is collaborating with Pritzker Architecture Prize-winner Tadao Ando on the development of a new 32-villa property situated on a hardened flow of lava.
• Also in China, GHM has launched a new hotel brand, Ahn Luh, in collaboration with China’s largest tourism group and a prominent real estate developer. The first two Ahn Luh properties are scheduled to open in two-to-three years.
• GHM in December last year inked a development deal with partners in the United Arab Emirates, and has identified its first project as The Chedi Khorfakkan in Sharjah. New development deals are also in the planning stages for Cuba and Brazil.
“In our first 20 years, we pioneered resorts in some of the world’s most up-and-coming destinations, from Ubud on Bali to Quang Nam in Vietnam, establishing an ambitious presence with hotels that melded lofty, contemporary design with exquisite, local architectural elements,” said Hans Jenni, who co-founded GHM with Amanresorts visionary Adrian Zecha. “In this, the first year of our third decade, we’re engineering the moves on a five-year plan of growth the likes of which we’ve never seen.”
In preparation, GHM has just launched a completely redesigned Web site at www.GHMhotels.com. The new site opens the door on GHM with a more user-friendly layout and design, featuring a booking engine, rich visuals and regular news updates.
At the Chedi Club Suzhou, GHM is opening 36 rooms on three floors of the city’s tallest building, Global 188. Additionally, the Chedi will feature a destination rooftop restaurant, a fitness centre and a spa replete with 15 treatment rooms.
In Andermatt, an emerging alternative to the ski resorts at St. Moritz and Gstaad, GHM plans to debut its largest hotel to date in the 169-room Chedi Andermatt, which includes 119 luxury apartments and residences of 96 - 550 square metres. The facilities will feature an apres ski bar, a wine-and-cigar library, a private outdoor skating rink, as well as a fitness centre, restaurant, and a bar and lounge.
In its first 20 years, GHM has earned a reputation for refined hotel designs, having worked with some of the world’s most sought after and creative designers. Each new GHM hotel is a study in bold design, a trend that is likely to continue as the likes of Tadao Ando bear down on projects for the group.
The Kona design, for example, makes use of Ando’s penchant for planes of exposed concrete and a topographically sensitive foundation.
“Because so many of our guests tend to spend a lot of time on property, we feel an additional, creative responsibility,” said Jenni. “Each of our properties is not merely a hotel or a resort, but a setting, a destination in its own right, and thus, an opportunity to create a space that’s not easily forgotten.”