CP LAND PLC, a subsidiary of Charoen Pokphand Group, plans enter into a joint venture with PTT Plc to open budget hotels at petrol stations nationwide to serve the increasing number of motorists.
CP Land is also expanding its four star-hotel chain “Fortune” and building a new convention centre in Khon Kaen. Moving into the hospitality sector, the country’s largest conglomerate aims to cash in on growing tourism which now accounts for 16 per cent of national gross domestic product.
Naravadee Waravanitcha, executive vice president for investment and hotel management at CP Land Plc, said she would meet with executives of PTT this week to discuss cooperation in building budget hotels at PTT petrol stations.
CP Land will propose to PTT to select 50 PTT oil stations out of 1,400 stations nationwide for building budget hotels branded “Fortune D”.
CP Land and PTT, however, may consider creating a new hotel chain if they do not agree on the proposed brand.
“The new hotel projects are aimed at serving motorists particularly at prime-road traffic locations. Each room will feature entertainment from True Vision [another business unit of CP Group], fresh coffee and flexible one meal and check-out times,” she said. Rooms at PTT stations will be priced at Bt700 per night.
Aside from Fortune D projects at PTT stations, CP Land is expanding the chain into a new tourist destination, including Chiang Khong in Chiang Rai province.
She said Chiang Rai has the potential to help boost the country’s economy, cross-border trading and tourism, investment, and logistics management as the province is the gateway to Thailand and neighbouring countries in the greater Mekong Sub-region.
“Chiang Rai has high potential to become medical and health tourism, as well as agriculture and logistics hubs due to good infrastructure,” she added.
CP Land decided to build a four-star hotel, Fortune River View Chiang Khong, at a cost of Bt270 million, which opened earlier this year. The 147-room hotel targets the local and international markets.
According to Naravadee, the company has opened Fortune View Khong Hotel in Nakorn Phanom with an investment of Bt110 million and a Bt-270-million Fortune River View Nakhon Phanom. The company also plans to open Fortune D in Maesod in Tak province within this year, at an investment of Bt200 million.
In 2017, it is scheduled to open Fortune D Plus Khao Yai, Fortune D Loei, Fortune D Burirum, Fortune Grand Hotel In Nakorn Sri Thamarat, and other tourists destination in the South.
Average room rate at the Fortune D brand is Bt750 per night while the rate at Fortune D Plus brand is Bt1,200-Bt1,400 per night.
From 2012 until end of 2017, CPLand expected to invest at least Bt1.8 billion in the hotel business.
Aside from hotel expansion, CP Land is also entering into the meeting, incentive, convention, and exhibition (MICE) business by investing in a convention centre in Khon Kaen province at a cost of Bt1 billion. The new MICE centre, over 26,000 square metres, is expected to open in 2017. The company believes that the existing convention centre – Khon Kaen Convention Exhibition Centre – cannot meet demand, as it is operating with some limitations such as lack of free trade zone and also it is not suited for huge events.