Business Digest

peninsula room rates expected to hold firm

The Peninsula Hong Kong, the flagship hotel of Hongkong and Shanghai Hotels, expects the first quarter's rise in room rates to be maintained for the rest of the year due to the thriving tourism arrivals, according to chief executive Clement Kwok King-man.

The hotel, one of the group's seven-strong portfolio, charged 9.77 per cent more on average at $3,067 per room per night in the first quarter, bringing the rate closer to its historical peak of $3,471 in 1997.

The higher rate and the one percentage point increase in occupancy to 83 per cent showed the usually heavy demand during the winter season.

'The economy has grown at a robust rate and tourist arrivals remain strong,' Mr Kwok said after the company's annual shareholders' meeting yesterday. Denise Tsang

playmates founder's sons in legal dispute

A legal dispute between two sons of the founder of toy company Playmates Holdings, Chan Tai-ho, was heard in the High Court yesterday.

Waddington, a company controlled by Albert Chan Chun-wai, is suing Thomas Chan Chun-hoo's TGC Investments, Playmates and two Playmates subsidiaries - Playmates International and Profit Point.

Waddington is seeking damages for breaches of fiduciary duties by Thomas Chan, who is also the chairman of Playmates, in connection with Profit Point's disposal of its shareholding in Prestige Property Holdings in 2000. Toh Han Shih

most owners back tender of kut cheong mansion

More than 90 per cent of the homeowners in Kut Cheong Mansion in King's Road, North Point, plan to put their properties up for tender in September for about $1.5 billion.

The property comprises four blocks with 448 residential units and 56 shops. The 32,400 square foot site can provide a gross floor area of 340,200 sqft.

The buyer will be able to apply to the Lands Tribunal for an order compelling the sale of remaining ownerships. Yvonne Liu