12 December 2022, etc.venues Monument, London
Business Travel Show Europe, presented by The BTN
21 November, London Hilton Metropole
The deluxe Pensinsula Hotels chain has finally secured a property in Paris. The location is close to the Arc de Triomphe and the building will be redeveloped ready for a 2012 opening. Although known around the world for its iconic properties, most particularly the Peninsula Hong Kong and the Peninsula Bangkok, the chain has only eight properties and has struggled to find appropriate locations in Europe.
The building in Paris to be redeveloped was once home to the Majestic Hotel, though in more recent times it was the home of the Kleber International Conference Centre. The history is important to Peninsula Hotels, which prefers to redevelop historical buildings, one of the reasons roll out of new hotels has been slow.
The company has been actively searching for a property in London, as has Shangri-La hotels. Shangri-La eventually opted for a new build project ” nicknamed The Shard of Glass, which has been subject to several delays and which at present does not have even a provisional opening date. Mandarin Oriental, meanwhile, refurbished an existing property in Knightsbridge at great expense, and has seen great success as a result.
Perhaps a lesson has been learned, and though there will never be a relaxation in the strict requirements for the right location and quality of service, new buildings will be considered. The next project is The Peninsula Shanghai, opening in 2009 on the Bund. It will have a classical exterior and interiors inspired by the Art Deco era, but is a new-build hotel, complete with grand ballroom, function rooms, themed lounge, a fully-equipped business centre, swimming pool, spa, fitness centre, retail shops and a Peninsula boutique.
For Hongkong and Shanghai Hotels ” the parent company of The Peninsula Hotels ” this is being billed as a return to Shanghai. The company has a 142-year heritage as Asia”s oldest hotel company. It was formed in 1923 by the merger of the Hongkong Hotel Company (originally registered on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange in March 1866, and owning The Hongkong, Peak and Repulse Bay Hotels) and the Shanghai Hotels Limited (which owned the Kalee Hotel, Astor House, Palace and Majestic Hotels in Shanghai and approximately 60 per cent of The Grand Hotel des Wagons-Lits in Beijing). The present locations are: Hong Kong (1928), Manila (1976), New York (1988), Beijing (1989), Beverly Hills (1991), Bangkok (1999), Chicago (2001) and Tokyo (2007).