Ascott achieves record growth in 2021 with 15,100 units signed and highest-ever property openings of over 8,200 units
Secures 58 new franchise and management contracts to add over 12,500 units across Asia Pacific, Europe, Middle East and Africa. Continues to grow fee income through lodging operations.
CapitaLand Investment Limited’s (CLI) wholly owned lodging business unit, The Ascott Limited (Ascott) has secured 15,100 units across 72 properties globally in 2021. This marks the fifth consecutive year Ascott has achieved record growth in units organically despite COVID-19 headwinds in the past two years. Serviced residences continue to be Ascott’s mainstay, making up over 60% of the new signings while the number of hotels secured grew in 2021.
Ascott also closed 2021 to achieve its highest-ever property openings, launching over 8,200 units in 40 properties across 25 cities and 10 countries. This is more than double the units opened in 2020. The properties opened in 2021 includes Ascott’s first Adoor-branded rental housing property, Adoor Apartment Heda Hangzhou (Xiasha) and its first lyf-branded coliving property, lyf Mid-Town Hangzhou, in China.
Mr Kevin Goh, CLI’s Chief Executive Officer for Lodging, said: “In 2021, Ascott continued with our strong growth trajectory despite COVID-19. Our record signings for the fifth consecutive year anchors Ascott’s market leading position as an international lodging operator. More than 80% of the new units secured in 2021 were under management and franchise contracts, in line with Ascott’s asset-light growth strategy. We also opened a record number of units in 2021, readying ourselves for the recovery of travel in 2022. The newly signed and opened properties will be a welcome boost to our recurring fee income, as we build on this momentum to meet our target of 160,000 units globally by 2023.”
Ascott named ‘World’s Leading Serviced Apartment Brand’ despite COVID-19
In 2021, Ascott’s unwavering efforts to step up its operational excellence and offer guests a safe home away from home were recognised by its guests and the hospitality industry. In December 2021, Ascott won the coveted title of ‘World’s Leading Serviced Apartment Brand’ at the World Travel Awards 2021. Ascott also emerged the biggest winner at the World Travel Awards 2021 with a total of 28 accolades, the greatest number of awards won amongst serviced residence companies.
Furthermore, Ascott was recognised as the ‘Best Serviced Residence Group – Asia Pacific’ at the Travel Weekly Asia 2021 Readers’ Choice Awards for the sixth consecutive year. Ascott also won ‘Best Serviced Residence Brand’ in Asia Pacific and ‘Best Serviced Apartment Company’ in the United Kingdom at the Business Traveller Awards 2021, retaining the former title for 18 consecutive years since the award category was introduced in 2004.
Mr Goh added: “As a vertically integrated company, Ascott remains committed to delivering greater value for our guests, enhancing our loyalty programme, Ascott Star Rewards (ASR), providing our guests with more ways to enjoy ASR benefits, strengthening our corporate relationships and tapping on technology to provide us with an edge over our competition.”
Ascott continues to see strong domestic demand in China; opens first rental housing property in the country
Out of the 28 newly signed properties in the last five months, 11 properties are located in China. Ascott’s footprint in China is set to grow to more than 39,000 units in over 180 properties across more than 40 cities. Ascott’s resilient base of long-stay corporate guests and the strong domestic leisure travel market have enabled Ascott’s serviced residences in China to achieve robust occupancy rates. In 2021, Ascott’s properties in China’s tier one cities Beijing, Guangzhou, Shanghai and Shenzhen achieved an average occupancy rate of over 80%, exceeding the market average of around 57% for the same period.
Ascott has also tapped on its expertise in the extended-stay segment to expand in the rental housing sector in China. In addition to opening its first rental housing property in the country, Adoor Apartment Heda Hangzhou (Xiasha), Ascott signed an Adoor-branded property in Xi’an in 2021 which is slated to open in 2023. Ascott’s expansion in the rental housing sector leverages the growing demand from young and mobile professionals as well as returning students from abroad who are seeking to rent fully-furnished homes in the tier one and tier two cities on a longer-term basis in China. To date, Ascott has a total of 23 rental housing properties with over 3,200 units across 11 cities in China and Japan.
Ascott expands its global presence
Through the 28 newly secured properties, Ascott will expand its geographical reach to new cities such as Boao and Sanya in China; as well as Padang Pariaman and Tasikmalaya in Indonesia. Ascott has also entered Cameroon and Nigeria with the signing of its first property in the capital cities of Yaoundé and Lagos respectively.
In addition, Ascott will further strengthen its presence in Melbourne in Australia; Vienna in Austria; Guangzhou, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Tianjin, Wuhan, Wuxi, Xi’an and Zhuhai in China; Addis Ababa in Ethiopia; Bandung, Bekasi, Jakarta and Yogyakarta in Indonesia; Bangkok in Thailand; and Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam. The properties are slated to open between 2022 and 2026.
Ascott achieves record growth in units in Vietnam
In 2021, Ascott secured a record of about 3,000 new units in Vietnam, exceeding its full year signings in the country in the previous years. This includes Ascott’s partnership with Sun Group, one of the biggest real estate developers in Vietnam. Ascott will manage the country’s largest serviced residence integrated development, comprising 1,905 units across three distinct serviced residence brands within the Tay Ho View Complex in Hanoi. The iconic integrated development will be Hanoi’s new landmark, transforming the city’s skyline and rejuvenating the city’s exclusive waterfront Tay Ho district. The three serviced residences are expected to open in phases from 1Q 2023.