25 new properties signed as domestic demand for serviced residences remains resilient while international travel gradually resumes
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Singapore, 17 June 2020 – CapitaLand’s wholly owned lodging business unit, The Ascott Limited (Ascott), has set a new record by securing contracts for 25 new properties with over 5,400 units across nineteen cities globally. This is the largest number of new properties Ascott has clinched in the first five months of any year. This is also a 139% year-on-year increase in the number of units secured, compared to the same period in 2019.
Through the new properties, Ascott will expand its geographical reach into four new major cities in China, Indonesia and Morocco. Ascott will enter Zhengzhou, the capital of Henan Province; and Nanchang, the capital and largest city of Jiangxi Province. In Indonesia, it has expanded into Jayapura, the capital and largest city of Papua Province; and in Morocco, it has ventured into Casablanca, the largest city of Morocco. Ascott will also further strengthen its presence in key gateway cities such as Shanghai, Guangzhou and Chengdu in China; Batam and Surabaya in Indonesia; as well as Manila in the Philippines.
The 25 new properties are secured under management contracts, franchise contracts and a lease. The properties will open in phases between 2020 and 2024. This year, Ascott has also opened six new properties in Singapore; Changsha and Tianjin in China; Gold Coast in Australia; Osaka in Japan; and Tours in France.
Ascott continued to ramp up its presence with these new signings and property openings amid the COVID-19 outbreak, when many of Ascott’s serviced residences remained operational to provide a safe haven for its guests, including healthcare workers, returning nationals, and those affected by border closures. As cities emerge from their lockdowns, Ascott’s value proposition as a ‘home away from home’ continue to resonate well with its guests and partners across the world.
Mr Kevin Goh, CapitaLand’s Chief Executive Officer for Lodging and Ascott’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “Ascott’s record signing of 25 new properties globally despite the challenges of COVID-19 demonstrates that our partners recognise the resilience of our lodging products and the value Ascott brings as one of the leading international lodging owner-operators. We have a strong base of long-stay guests who appreciate the comfort of our spacious apartments where they can live and work. This has enabled our serviced residences globally to maintain robust average occupancy rates. We have already taken steps to ready Ascott to be the accommodation of choice in a post COVID-19 landscape and will continue to cement Ascott’s position as a dominant lodging player and deliver more value for our guests and business partners.”
Domestic demand for serviced residences remains resilient in China
Half of the 25 new contracts secured are in China. Ascott has also signed its first rental housing property in China, located in Shanghai. The expansion into the segment taps on the growing demand from young, mobile workers as well as returning students from abroad who are looking to rent quality fully furnished homes in the tier one and tier two cities on a long-term basis in China.
In 2Q 2020, a quarter of Ascott’s properties in China have achieved occupancy rates of over 70%. Ascott has also achieved 100% occupancy rate across some of its properties in cities such as Hangzhou, Suzhou and Wuxi over China’s five-day ‘Mini Golden Week’ public holiday.
Mr Tan Tze Shang, Ascott’s Managing Director for China and Head of Business Development for China, said: “Ascott remains confident in China’s long-term growth and will continue to seek good investment and partnership opportunities to expand our footprint. Since May 2020, Ascott has fully resumed operations of our properties in mainland China and we are seeing encouraging signs of recovery driven by the country’s strong domestic demand. With the implementation of green lanes between China and other countries such as Singapore and Korea, we expect demand for our properties to pick up pace as international travel gradually resumes. We stand ready to welcome our new and returning guests to Ascott, their home away from home.”
In May 2020, Ascott launched ‘Ascott Cares’ to deliver stringent hygiene and cleanliness standards as well as safe distancing to continue providing safe homes for its guests, and a safe working environment for its staff. Covering nine commitments, ‘Ascott Cares’ is in compliance with the World Health Organization standards and local regulations. It is being rolled out progressively to its properties globally from June 2020. For more information on ‘Ascott Cares’, please visit: www.the-ascott.com/ascottcares.
With the addition of the 25 new contracts, Ascott has a total of close to 118,000 units in over 700 properties worldwide. These new contracts will offer a boost towards achieving Ascott’s global target of 160,000 units by 2023.
About The Ascott Limited
The Ascott Limited is a Singapore company that has grown to be one of the leading international lodging owner-operators. Ascott's portfolio spans more than 180 cities across over 30 countries in Asia Pacific, Central Asia, Europe, the Middle East, Africa and the USA.
Ascott has about 70,000 operating units and over 48,000 units under development, making a total of about 118,000 units in over 700 properties.
The company’s serviced residence and hotel brands include Ascott The Residence, he Crest Collection, Somerset, Quest, Citadines, lyf, Préférence, Vertu, Harris, Citadines Connect, Fox,
Yello and POP!.
Ascott, a wholly owned subsidiary of CapitaLand Limited, pioneered Asia Pacific’s first international-class serviced residence with the opening of The Ascott Singapore in 1984. Today, the company boasts over 30 years of industry track record and award-winning brands that enjoy recognition worldwide.
Ascott’s achievements have been recognised internationally. Recent awards include DestinAsian Readers' Choice Awards 2020 for 'Best Serviced Residence Brand'; World Travel Awards 2019 for ‘Leading Serviced Apartment Brand’ in Asia, Europe and the Middle East; Business Traveller Asia-Pacific Awards 2019 for 'Best Serviced Residence Brand'; Business Traveller China Awards 2019 for 'Best Luxury Serviced Residence Brand'; and TTG China Travel Awards 2019 for ‘Best Serviced Residence Operator in China’. For a full list of awards, please visit https://www.the-ascott.com/ascottlimited/awards.html.
About CapitaLand Limited
CapitaLand Limited (CapitaLand) is one of Asia’s largest diversified real estate groups. Headquartered and listed in Singapore, it owns and manages a global portfolio worth S$131.9 billion as at 31 December 2019. CapitaLand’s portfolio spans across diversified real estate classes which includes commercial, retail; business park, industrial and logistics; integrated development, urban development; as well as lodging and residential. With a presence across more than 200 cities in over 30 countries, the Group focuses on Singapore and China as its core markets, while it continues to expand in markets such as India, Vietnam, Australia, Europe and the USA.
CapitaLand has one of the largest real estate investment management businesses globally. It manages seven listed real estate investment trusts (REITs) and business trusts as well as over 20 private funds. Since it pioneered REITs in Singapore with the listing of CapitaLand Mall Trust in 2002, CapitaLand’s REITs and business trusts have expanded to include Ascendas Real Estate Investment Trust, CapitaLand Commercial Trust, Ascott Residence Trust, CapitaLand Retail China Trust, Ascendas India Trust and CapitaLand Malaysia Mall Trust.
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