Singapore National Day 2016

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Memorable moments: established hotel brands provide Asian-style hospitality and offer guests a stay to remember in Singapore

Welcoming visitors and making them feel comfortable is an art form for brands such as Raffles, Banyan Tree, Aman Resorts and Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts

PUBLISHED : Monday, 08 August, 2016, 12:00pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 09 August, 2016, 11:35am

Asian hospitality sets a high standard globally in the luxury hotel sector and some of the top brands have their roots in Singapore – Raffles, Banyan Tree, Aman Resorts and Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts, which opened its first hotel in the Lion City 45 years ago.

“We have a long history in Asia and in many ways have set the benchmark for what luxury represents across the region today,” says Steven Taylor, Shangri-La’s chief marketing officer . “As an owner and operator with ownership in a large majority of our hotels, we have been able to establish a greater level of consistency throughout our properties and across the brand
experience, which has formed the basis for our reputation as a luxury operator.

“Shangri-La has always been renowned as a leader in the luxury industry for its highest service standards. This is due to our unique culture that is steeped in the tradition of Asian hospitality and which inspires us to treat our guests as family.”

Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts operates 98 venues under several brands, namely Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts, Kerry Hotels, Hotel Jen and Traders Hotels, 82 of which are Shangri-La-branded properties. Kerry Hotels will open its first hotel in Hong Kong later this year. “The first Kerry hotel opened in Shanghai in Pudong five years ago and has been an incredible success story,” Taylor says.

“Kerry Hotels is the antidote for boxed in, standardised and expected hotel experiences. Because no one travels to stay just in a hotel, we believe in creating completely open, vibrant destinations that seamlessly bring the community and guests together to enjoy experiences that energise, relax and entertain. Kerry Hotels are destinations for the local community – lifestyle complexes that cater to local residents as well as guests, providing vibrant dining and entertainment experiences and remarkable fitness and wellness complexes such as Kerry Sports.”

[Shangri-La has] a long history in Asia and in many ways have set the benchmark for what luxury represents across the region today
Steven Taylor, chief marketing officer, Shangri-La

Another luxury brand, where amenities would arguably be a major draw, is Banyan Tree Hotels and Resorts, which has 30 resorts and hotels, 70 spas, 90 retail galleries and three championship golf courses in 28 countries.

“Banyan Tree is well known for our service, high quality and unique retreat experience in stunning destinations across the globe. From a welcoming Banyan Tree personal host, soothing essential oils in your villa and signature turn-down touch points, guests experience a strong sense of place rooted in environmental sensibility at every resort,” says Des Pugson, managing director, Banyan Tree Hotels and Resorts.

“Respect for nature is key to the Banyan Tree philosophy. We work very closely with the local communities to ensure that we provide naturally luxurious, ecologically sensitive and culture-aware experiences for our guests.

“The bonds created through associates working and training together across properties and countries permeates throughout the organisation. That is what makes Banyan Tree stand out.”

In addition to the Angsana brand, Banyan Tree is expanding its offerings. “We are ... creating a collection of brands which enables us to promote different experiences to various target groups. We have added a new brand, Cassia, to our existing portfolio, targeting the growing middle class with hotel residences that address price and quality. We also have a fourth brand, Dhawa, an affordable full-service hotel brand which will appeal to independent travellers and millennials,” Pugson says.

Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts will hit its 102nd property worldwide before the end of this year. “We’re excited to have launched 12 new Shangri-La hotels in the last 18 months, including Shangri-La’s Hambantota Resort & Spa, Sri Lanka; Shangri-La at The Fort, Manila; and Shangri-La Midtown, Hangzhou which all opened this year.

“We will open a further four hotels in 2016, including the Kerry Hotel, Hong Kong, and will reach a milestone of 100 properties in the group in the year ahead,” Taylor says.