The enormous numbers involved in domestic Chinese travel are no secret. Rosewood, W, Banyan Tree, Bvlgari, Conrad and Waldorf are among the major brands opening and building new hotels in a massive construction pipeline that stands at 2,523 hotels and 556,645 rooms. Hyatt plans to double its presence in China over the next four years with 60 hotels and 22,000 rooms, nearly one-third of its global development pipeline. Hilton Worldwide has 397 projects and 88,689 rooms under development. What do millennial luxury wellness travellers look for in a holiday? Travel and tourism revenue in China are growing at more than double the rate of GDP growth. But how do luxury travellers’ tastes differ when travelling domestically rather than internationally? View this post on Instagram Spring Festival reunion is around the corner, gather your loved ones to enjoy an indulgent culinary experience featuring signature Chinese New Year extravaganza, including Peking duck, Australian beef ribs and steamed stone garoupa. #cny #lunarnewyear #springfestival #familyreunion A post shared by Park Hyatt Shanghai (@parkhyattshanghai) on Jan 17, 2019 at 10:05pm PST <!--//--><![CDATA[// ><!--\n\n\n//--><!]]> There is scant information available compared to the wealth of reports about Chinese tourism on the international stage – yet with more luxury options becoming available in their own country, affluent Chinese travellers are sure to be looking closer to home in the future, both for short getaways and longer stays. 7 travel experiences to put the ‘wow’ factor into 2019 Our recent China Insight Report on luxury travel revealed key findings that travel and hospitality brands need to know to appeal to affluent Chinese customers. What are the “at home” destinations, browsing and decision-making trends popular with wealthy Chinese travellers? Destinations View this post on Instagram Cheers to the sunset, the end of Monday. #molife #moviews #champagne #epicure #mofoodies #travel #photography #photooftheday #afternoontea #momentsofdelight #tropicallife #tropicalcelebration A post shared by Mandarin Oriental, Sanya (@mo_sanya) on Dec 4, 2017 at 3:27am PST <!--//--><![CDATA[// ><!--\n\n\n//--><!]]> Sanya is the leading choice for holidays in China, which is confirmed by The Luxury Conversation report and a presentation by the Hurun Report at ILTM China. Certain categories of public employees in China still need to request permission to travel overseas – this applies to those on the top rung as well as for staff lower down the ladder. So rather than asking permission to visit foreign destinations, they will opt for a beach trip to Sanya when they need a warm getaway. Sanya contains virtually every luxury hotel brand imaginable. However, it is still developing rapidly with airport expansion and upgrading of its duty-free and international collaborations. It’s worth noting that because of its location Sanya is a hit with Russian tourists, and most top hotels offer Russian-language guest services. If you have travelled to Sanya, let’s say as someone living in Shanghai seeking warmth in winter, you will have noticed that at the top hotels, wealthy families take their ayi – the maid – with them, and she helps to take care of the children and other needs of the family’s matriarch – and thus opt for connecting rooms, or a villa. Most hotel guests are from China’s Dongbei area in the northeast – a much colder region – which shows how “marketing your property to China” needs regional targeting, as people in the provinces have different travel tastes. Top 2019 trends in luxury shopping and travel among Chinese consumers Browse and book The leader? Not WeChat or Weibo, but Fliggy – an app from Alibaba Group (which owns Tmall and Taobao as well as the South China Morning Post ), which is called FeiZhu in Chinese. Our report on affluent Chinese travellers showed that while WeChat and Weibo are popular, Fliggy is the top choice for learning about travel information and making a booking online. Our report on affluent Chinese travellers showed that while WeChat and Weibo are popular, Fliggy is the top choice for learning about travel information and making a booking online Research into Fliggy revealed a key takeaway on influencer opportunity – any Fliggy user can create detailed reviews of their trips, which other users can like and comment on. This leads to popular users/reviewers gaining a following and becoming key opinion leaders (KOLs) in their own right. Our research shows that relatively few such users collaborate with brands on their trips – an opportunity with great potential for a savvy business. For a Chinese traveller who receives tens of thousands of (genuine) likes and comments, it’s a playing field ripe for brands to target: contacting such users and collaborating on promotions to a highly-engaged audience. Domestic distinctions View this post on Instagram A respite from the daily stresses of life awaits you at Sense, A Rosewood #Spa. by @yyuesong #ASenseofSanya #RosewoodSanya #RosewoodHotels #ASenseofPlace A post shared by Rosewood Sanya (@rosewoodsanya) on Dec 25, 2018 at 7:59pm PST <!--//--><![CDATA[// ><!--\n\n\n//--><!]]> The guidance for any luxury travel brand or destination outside China is to expertly cater to Chinese tastes, language and desires. For a luxury property in China, these pointers should be innate. So what other expectations do affluent Chinese travellers have when travelling domestically? The many ways travel changed – resoundingly for the better – in 2018 While Chinese food will always be sought while overseas, variety is the spice of life at home. Almost all the dining options along the main 5-star strip of Yalong Bay in Sanya are Chinese or general Western. The few diverse choices are a Thai restaurant at the Mangrove Tree resort and a Japanese venue at Marriott – we’ve visited Sanya several times and noticed that these are always full, as travellers seek an alternative choice during their several days. If you are going to serve Western food in your hotel in China, it needs to be up to the standard that your well-travelled guests have experienced overseas. How mobile can you go View this post on Instagram Paddle your way into paradise. #SanyaEDITION : @didiana A post shared by EDITION Hotels (@editionhotels) on Oct 29, 2017 at 10:38am PDT <!--//--><![CDATA[// ><!--\n\n\n//--><!]]> As we saw in our Chinese traveller report, over 90 per cent of affluent Chinese respondents consider it “very important” that a hotel/resort overseas has WeChat functionality, such as a loyalty programme and customer service operating within WeChat. So, you can imagine the expectations of luxury travellers within China. China is a digital pioneer – even KFC operates facial recognition, street buskers take donations by WeChat Pay and there is an artificial intelligence (AI) anchor reading the news on TV. The idea of checking in to your luxury property in China not via digital means, of having to find and pick up the room’s telephone to order food or book an attraction, of locating the borderline archaic white-plastic-box a/c controls, is digital blasphemy in a country that is at the forefront of life meeting tech. Brand learning – Swire Hotels View this post on Instagram Congratulations to our Houses @templehousecdu @upperhouse_hkg @oppositehouse for being listed on the Condé Nast Traveler’s Readers’ Choice Awards 2018 for Top Hotels in China! Shout out to @eastmia for being named in the Top Hotels in Miami category as well! . . . . #TheTempleHouse #TheUpperHouse #TheOppositeHouse #TheHouseCollective #EASTMiami #atEAST #SwireHotels #cntraveler #Chengdu #HongKong #Beijing #Miami A post shared by Swire Hotels Social (@swirehotels) on Oct 12, 2018 at 2:55am PDT <!--//--><![CDATA[// ><!--\n\n\n//--><!]]> The House Collective, Swire Hotels’ group of individual hotels, offers a travel experience that breaks with convention. Swire Hotels includes The House Collective – The Opposite House, The Upper House, The Temple House and The Middle House, in Beijing, Hong Kong, Chengdu and Shanghai respectively – and the EAST hotels in Beijing, Hong Kong and Miami. Which travel hotspot suits your Chinese zodiac sign in 2019? We spoke to Teresa Muk, head of brand and communications at Swire Hotels, to find out what the group has learned about domestic Chinese travel. Q: What is your key concept and differentiator when communicating with your target demographic, relevant to your positioning? Teresa Muk: What sets us apart from other luxury boutique hotel brands is our deep understanding of our guests and what they expect and want while travelling, which also means we are not trying to target everyone. To provide the best curated and personalised service, we understand that we cannot please everyone and must focus our efforts on specific groups instead. Swire Hotels is soulfully individual in every way, shape and form, celebrating individuality and straying from the norm. Both of our brands, The House Collective and EAST, break from the traditional notions of luxury and business hotels and have filled in gaps in the market, offering another option to those that do not fit or relate to existing offerings and are seeking a new concept of luxury. For these people, we strive to provide a place they can call home, from our spacious and thoughtfully designed rooms to our personalised service delivered by our fun and spontaneous team members. View this post on Instagram Tunnel vision from @itsmekatttttttt @thatsbeijing #beijing #beijinglife #beijing #beijingphotography #forbiddencity #forbiddencityphotography #chinese #chineseculture #luneng #chaoyangdistrict #dongzhimen #landscape #roastedduck #beijingtrip #thatsbeijing #december #winterstyle #visitingbeijing #beijingwonders #cityhopper A post shared by The Opposite House (@oppositehouse) on Dec 3, 2018 at 10:33pm PST <!--//--><![CDATA[// ><!--\n\n\n//--><!]]> Each of the Houses in The House Collective also celebrates individuality as no one House is the same. From the architecture and design to the personality and vibe, each one expresses the local culture and displays art in their own ways, creating experiences that cannot be found elsewhere. The Opposite House is all about art and design; The Upper House is the place to be inspired; The Temple House pays tribute to Chengdu’s rich history; The Middle House stays stylish with the newest fashion. 5 ways to time travel – and celebrate New Year’s Day twice Q: What have been the most successful channels for having your target customer understanding what you stand for and what they can expect? TM: Providing highly personalised service for our guests to experience and building lasting relationships with them have been the best ways for guests to fully understand our brand. Word of mouth has become another powerful channel through which our guests and potential guests have come to know us. Word of mouth, online and offline, has been a way for guests to know us in a more authentic way and for us to build trust. Our loyal guests have naturally become our brand ambassadors. Beyond the hotel stay experience, our events have been another avenue to engage with our target audience on a more personal level. We purposely invite speakers and collaborate with brands that are more niche and would attract specific groups that are already in the know. Our events tend to be on a smaller scale, creating an intimate setting with a sense of community. View this post on Instagram Start the new year with a rejuvenating experience with our A New Year, A New You room package. Offer details on link in bio. . . Photo @mabel.lau #ANewYearANewYou #Rejuvenating #Bathtub #Enjoy #Relax #Refreshing #Experience #ThisView #Luxury #LuxuryHotel #NewYear #OurHouseIsYourHouse #TheUpperHouse #TheHouseCollective #SwireHotels #LuxuryHotels #LifeWellTravelled #BeautifulView #Spacious #Spa #City #Traveller #Travel #BeautifulHotels #BeautifulDestinations #HongKong #HKIGer #VisitHongKong #ThePreferredLife... A post shared by The Upper House Hong Kong (@upperhouse_hkg) on Jan 8, 2019 at 9:16pm PST <!--//--><![CDATA[// ><!--\n\n\n//--><!]]> We are working to strengthen our WeChat strategy so that we can utilise the platform to more effectively engage in one-on-one communication with our guests and potential guests, another way to provide personalised service as well as information about our brand. How green has become the new gold for luxury Chinese travellers With most our hotels located in China and Chinese tourism booming, both domestically and internationally, we must provide Chinese tourists with ways to gather information and book in a way that they understand and are comfortable with, and WeChat is one of those ways. Q: What are the special points of experience that are rising trends in terms of domestic guest preferences? TM: Wellness tourism is a rising trend in China. With the long work hours and urban pollution, the younger Chinese population is placing more importance on and paying more attention to their health. Short R&R weekend getaways will become more popular as Chinese guests look for convenient ways to relax and escape without having to plan a long holiday away. View this post on Instagram TIVANO’s lunch set menu is available from 11:30-14:30 daily~ Hop over this weekend to give it a try Activate your weekend the right way~ https://goo.gl/DRBX1Q #tivano #thetemplehouse #thehousecollective #swirehotels #lunch #setmenu #tasty #italiancuisine #hungry #weekday #weekend #diningout #lifestyle #gourmet #feedme A post shared by The Temple House (@templehousecdu) on Jan 11, 2019 at 4:34am PST <!--//--><![CDATA[// ><!--\n\n\n//--><!]]> In China, mobile technology has allowed Chinese people to essentially have a portable control panel for their daily lives consolidated and organised all in one place. Smartphones are used for everything; hotels should utilise this technology to give guests the option of controlling everything from their mobile, from practical hotel conveniences such as booking, checking in and out, lighting, concierge, room key, payment, scheduling and messaging, to shopping, city guides and finding curated experiences. Opening Ceremony just designed a gold travel bag for your Hennessy In the process of doing so, it’s not only about the convenience of technology. In making some processes more efficient, this frees up time and capacity to bring personalised service to the next level, never forgetting that human interaction is still the most impactful. Want more stories like this? Sign up here . Follow STYLE on Facebook , Instagram and Twitter This article originally appeared on The Luxury Conversation .