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Ritzy China wants to treat you right with new hotels
Investors see shining stars as the first Chinese luxury hotel brand, Ahn Luh, launches in Beijing
It's fair to say that Chinese hotels haven't always enjoyed a pristine reputation for four-star service.
But a new venture is aiming to reboot the concept of customer care in the world's fastest-growing travel market.
A new luxury hotel concern, Ahn Luh Hotel Management Company (安麓酒店管理有限公司), launched operations in Beijing in late May, according to China Travel News Agency (in simplified Chinese).
The launch marks China's first foray into direct competition with international luxury hoteliers.
Ahn Luh (which may be translated as "peaceful mountain") is a joint venture between Beijing Tourism Group (China’s largest tourism company), Singapore-based General Hotel Management Holdings Ltd. (GHM) and the Great Ocean Group, a Chinese private investment company.
China is expected to become the world’s largest hotel market by the end of 2025.
"China service concept"
Launched in 1997, Shanghai-based Jinjiang Inns was modern China's first hotel group company. The company quickly earned a reputation for lack of professionalism, leaving a stereotype image of Chinese hotels as being disorderly and lacking top facilities, and employing staff with an indifferent attitude toward service.
More on CNNGo: The rise of China-centric hotel brands
The new Ahn Luh brand aims to pioneer a new “China service concept.”
“In essence, the concept is to bring in the old world Chinese hospitality of caring and being considerate with contemporary elegance to create value-added products,“ said Beijing Tourism Group chairman Duan Qiang (段强).
“We've got an experienced management team from GHM, which has successfully run luxury hotels, including the Nam Hai Hoi An in Vietnam and Chedi Muscat in Oman," said Duan. "We believe with this team we can redesign a new image of Chinese hotels."
Planned features of Ahn Luh properties include a resident tai chi master and on-site tai chi center and spa, yoga and meditation centers with TCM physicians, dim sum breakfasts and all day Chinese-style tapas bar.
Other announced amenities include indoor-outdoor pools, libraries and cigar lounges, airport concierges and a fleet of Wi-Fi enabled cars.
First Ahn Luh hotel in Sichuan
The first Ahn Luh property will be a 15,000-square-meter, 80-room resort located close to two UNESCO World Heritage sites (Dujiangyan and Qingcheng Mountain in Sichuan Province). It's expected to open to the public within three years.
More hotels are planned for major cities and tourist destinations around China, including properties in Beijing, the Pearl River Delta and southwest China.
“We’re planning to build on the great architectural traditions that have evolved in China over the past three thousand years, but at the same time, we’re looking to exude the enthusiasm and the innovative spirit that abounds throughout China,” said Douglas Zhao, executive chairman of Ahn Luh group.