Ascott Targets 40,000 Apartments by 2015

Travel News Asia Latest Travel News Podcasts Videos Monday, 2 August 2010

Ascott is planning to grow its global portfolio to 40,000 apartment units from the current 26,000 by 2015. Its global expansion plans were unveiled at the launch of the 278-unit Ascott Huai Hai Road Shanghai.

The company has also secured contracts to manage four premier Ascott-branded properties with over 800 apartment units across four cities in China, namely Ningbo, Hangzhou, Suzhou and Guangzhou.

In Europe, Ascott is converting its Citadines Paris Louvre into Ascott Louvre Paris, the companys first Ascott- branded property in France. Conversion of the 51-unit serviced residence will be completed in 2011.

The latest additions to Ascotts portfolio namely Ascott Raffles City Ningbo, Ascott Raffles City Hangzhou, Ascott Suzhou and Ascott Guangzhou IFC - are slated to open by 2015.

When all these five properties are completed, Ascott will have 20 premier Ascott-branded properties with over 3,800 apartment units in key cities around the world.

Mr Lim Ming Yan, Ascotts Chief Executive Officer, said, We are aiming for transformational change in Ascott. Growing our global portfolio to 40,000 apartment units by 2015 is one important part of this change. The greater scale will allow us to further upgrade our people and systems to create more value for our customers and ultimately more value for our properties. Besides adding new properties, such as the four new Ascott branded residences in China, we are also investing Sin$50 million to refurbish over 10 existing properties in Asia and Europe in the next 12 months. Recently upgraded Citadines South Kensington, Somerset Liang Court and Somerset Grand Cairnhill are all well received and appreciated by our customers.

 Our strategy is to extend Ascotts dominance in key cities in Asia Pacific and Europe through investments and management contracts. Our Singapore listed REIT, Ascott Residence Trust, and private equity funds such as Ascott China Fund are strong platforms that will enable us to grow rapidly. China, Vietnam, Singapore and India continue to be our key growth markets in Asia. In Europe, we will build upon our strong presence in France, Germany and the United Kingdom. We will also seek opportunities in Spain, Italy, Switzerland, Turkey and the Eastern European countries. Over the last few years, Ascott has been contributing about 10% of CapitaLands earnings. Looking ahead, for Ascott to be a significant part of CapitaLand, we hope that Ascott will be able to contribute up to 20% of CapitaLands earnings, added Mr Lim.

The 278-unit Ascott Huai Hai Road Shanghai is Ascotts largest serviced residence in the city. It is part of the prestigious Hong Kong Plaza, an integrated lifestyle development comprising offices, retail outlets and entertainment facilities. The property is a short walk to Xintiandi, Shanghais premier lifestyle and entertainment hub with a variety of restaurants, cafs, pubs and boutiques. Ascott Huai Hai Road Shanghai also provides immediate access to various business, entertainment and cultural destinations. These include Raffles City Shanghai, Peoples Square, Bund Centre, Shanghai Times Square, Shanghai Grand Theatre and Shanghai Museum.

The 160-unit Ascott Raffles City Ningbo is Ascotts first property in the city. Scheduled to open in 2012, the serviced residence will be located in the commercial district along South Daqing Road. The property will be part of Raffles City Ningbo, a one-stop office, dining, shopping and lifestyle destination. Designed by renowned architectural firm SMC Alsop, Raffles City Ningbo will be an iconic landmark of the city.

Ascott Raffles City Hangzhou is also Ascotts first property in Hangzhou and is slated to open in 2015. The 151-unit serviced residence will be part of the Raffles City Hangzhou integrated development which comprises Grade A offices and a major shopping mall. It will be located within the central business district of the Qianjiang New Town which is set to become the new city centre. The property will also be next to the Qiantangjiang River area which is being developed into Hangzhous municipal, commercial and recreational centre.

Ascott Suzhou is the first Ascott-branded serviced residence in Suzhou. Scheduled to open in 2012, the 178-unit property will be centrally located at the intersection of Jingji Lake Road and East Ring Road. It will be within the Suzhou Industrial Park which is home to major projects such as the Suzhou International Expo Centre and International Science and Technology Park. The serviced residence will be part of a mixed development comprising a retail podium. Many multinational companies, the Suzhou University and a major shopping mall will be in its vicinity.

Ascott Guangzhou IFC is the second Ascott-branded property in Guangzhou. Slated to open in 2011, the 314-unit serviced residence will have a prime location in Zhujiang New Town, the new Central Business District of Guangzhou. The property will be part of the prestigious Guangzhou International Finance Center which comprises a Grade A office block, shopping mall and an international conference centre. Ascott Guangzhou IFC will also be surrounded by many Grade A commercial buildings, multinational companies and consulates. It will provide convenient access to a wide range of dining, retail and entertainment facilities at the nearby Guangzhou Opera House and major shopping centres including the Guangzhou Friendship Mall and Happy Valley Mall.

Ascott Louvre Paris is just opposite Grand Louvre Museum and next to Palais-Royal and Tuileries gardens. The serviced residence is a few minutes away from renowned shopping districts such as Rue St-Honor, Avenue de l'Opra and Place Vendme. Numerous monuments, museums, boutiques, antique shops, restaurants and several Metro stations are near the property. Many multinational companies, embassies and government offices are also in the vicinity.

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