Closing the 2022 fiscal year with a total of 63 properties under 10 hospitality brands worldwide, Banyan Tree Group is on track to achieve its goal of doubling its global footprint by 2025 as part of a five-year expansion plan.
The Singapore-based hospitality company added eight newly built or converted hotels in 2022. This helps Banyan Tree reach closer to its aim of expanding its presence in 23 countries.
Banyan Tree’s development pipeline to 2025 will deliver 50 new hotel openings or conversions, bringing its global portfolio to 113 hotels, said Eddy See, president and CEO, Banyan Tree Group.
“At the end of 2021, we stated an ambitious goal to double our global footprint, a target that we are well on track to achieving thanks to a combination of favorable market conditions amid resurgent tourism and our strong portfolio of brands that match consumer trends in destinations as diverse as China and Spain,” See said.
Most of the expansion efforts are focused on new builds, with 80% of the portfolio’s growth stemming from these developments.
Having already opened three properties at the start of 2023, Banyan Tree hopes to add nine more by the end of the year.
“Our expansion strategy for 2023 is more aggressive as we are seeing positive signs in the travel industry and want to leverage this momentum to expand our reach further. We believe that there are still untapped markets and opportunities that we can explore, and we are actively pursuing them. In addition to opening new properties, we are also receiving more requests for conversions. Our expansion plans are focused on our current core footprint, and we are seeing great potential in the Americas,” Banyan Tree Group’s Senior Vice President, Brand and Commercial, Ho Ren Yung, told HOTELS.
There has been a positive trend, post-COVID, with the popular destinations of Phuket, Bali and the Maldives faring well and business surpassing 2019 demand, Ho said.
With an impressive Asian footprint already in place, the group sees China as a critical market in terms of portfolio composition and outbound customer acquisition. Since China reopened its borders to international tourists earlier this year, the company has seen a significant increase in outbound demand, with hotel searches soaring 1000%.
“We have ambitious expansion plans for China and are actively exploring opportunities in several key areas. We believe that these locations offer great growth potential and will enable us to further consolidate our presence in the Chinese market, especially as we see the evolving Chinese traveler caring more about values close to our brand DNA such as well-being and sustainability,” Ho said.
BRAND EXPANSION PLANS
Banyan Tree, the group’s flagship brand, presently accounts for 50% of the group’s portfolio. The brand plans to add 12 more properties in the next three years, including new Banyan Tree resorts in China and launching in Busan, South Korea, Manila Bay in the Philippines, Tuwaiq in Saudi Arabia and an eco-friendly hotel in Singapore as part of Mandai Wildlife Reserve (marking the group’s debut in Singapore).
The group’s wellness-centric brand, Banyan Tree Veya, will open a property in the hills of Baja California, with the opening of Banyan Tree Veya Valle de Guadalupe Resort, Spa and Winery. This will be the group’s fourth property in Mexico.
After introducing a “no-walls, no-floors” concept with Buahan, a Banyan Tree Escape resort in Bali, the second Banyan Tree Escape will be built in Lampung, on the Indonesian island of Sumatra, in the next two years.
Angsana, the lifestyle brand focused on authentic experiences, will open resorts in Vietnam, China, Cambodia and Taiwan by 2025. In Europe, the brand will launch in Spain in 2026 with the opening of Angsana Real de la Quinta Benahavis Marbella, an exclusive residential community offering hotel and residential long-term rentals and ownership.
After opening properties in Phuket, Bintan, Banyan Tree’s extended-stay brand, Cassia, has four more properties in its pipeline — one in Sokcho and Saekdal beach South Korea, two in Bangkok and one in Hokkaido, Japan.
The conversion of a former Angsana resort to Dhawa Ihuru in the Maldives, followed by Dhawa Xi’An Chanba’s & Dhawa Jinan Daming Lake in China early this year, marked the debut of the Dhawa brand. The brand will grow its presence across Asia with the opening of Dhawa Ho Tram in Vietnam and Beihai Weizhou Island hotels in China.
The newly-launched brand Homm will see openings in Bali (2023) and Vietnam (2024).
Garrya, the brand inspired by Asian sensibilities and natural elements, was introduced in 2022 with openings in China, Japan and Thailand. The fast-growing brand will see more properties be added in Indonesia (a new-build property in Yogyakarta), four resorts in Vietnam and two in China — all by 2025.
In terms of the absolute volume of signings, Banyan Tree leads with 10 projects scheduled to open by 2025, while Garrya has seven properties in the pipeline set to open by 2025. The group attributed Garrya’s fast-paced growth to the brand’s unique concept.
“At Garrya, we embrace the concept of slow living, which encourages individuals to take a step back from their hectic lifestyles and focus on what truly matters. Garrya’s brand values are rooted in ‘beauty in simplicity’ and the pillars of balance and contemplation, which are increasingly relevant in today’s fast-paced world. Through Garrya offerings, guests are provided with an opportunity to disconnect from the noise of the world and reconnect with themselves. Additionally, there is a demand in the market for a hotel upper upscale/luxury segment that merges simplicity and minimalist style as a core concept which is perfect for Garrya,” Ho said.
Banyan Tree’s approach to expansion is “go wide deep,” which means going wide in terms of a multi-brand approach and going deep with tailored and omnichannel experiences, especially with the Banyan Tree brand.
“This approach enables us to build on our existing success in a particular country and leverage the understanding of local culture and preferences to create unique and appealing experiences. By focusing on new destinations, they can also broaden their reach and appeal to a wider range of travelers,” Ho said.