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ASCOTT ACHIEVES RECORD HIGH SIGNINGS OF OVER 5,600 UNITS IN CHINA TO DATE DESPITE COVID-19

10-15-2020 08:31 AM CET | Tourism, Cars, Traffic

Press release from: CapitaLand Limited

CapitaLand’s wholly owned lodging business unit, The Ascott Limited (Ascott) has secured more than 2,100 new units across 12 properties in China in the last three months. With these new units, Ascott has added a record high of more than 5,600 units across 26 properties, which represent a 60% year-on-year growth in units in China. Globally, Ascott has sealed new contracts for more than 3,700 units across 22 properties; about 60% of which are from China and the rest are in various countries including Austria and Indonesia.

Ascott is also seeing strong recovery in China on the operations front. Its apartment revenue in September 2020 performed close to 95% of that in September 2019. Meanwhile, Ascott has been maintaining a steady stream of openings as demand for extended-stay properties continues to grow. In 2020, Ascott has opened 17 properties with over 2,400 units, with about half of these units in China.

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 September 2020, close to 75% of its guests in China were domestic travellers. During the same period, Ascott’s properties in tier one cities such as Beijing, Guangzhou, Shanghai and Shenzhen achieved an average occupancy rate of over 86%. In Chongqing, despite facing the pandemic and the worst floods in decades, Ascott Raffles City Chongqing achieved high occupancy rate of 80% in August 2020. The property continued to enjoy high occupancy in September 2020 when it celebrated its first anniversary with a cheque presentation ceremony to the Chongqing Charity Federation, in support of flood relief efforts.

Mr Kevin Goh, CapitaLand’s Chief Executive Officer for Lodging and Ascott’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “The COVID-19 pandemic has brought the resilience and flexibility of Ascott’s business model to the fore. In 2020, we have signed more than 9,300 units in 48 properties worldwide while expanding in China at a record rate. We are also planting new flags in markets such as Austria and Indonesia, offering our guests a wider network of Ascott properties. At the peak of the COVID-19 situation, many of Ascott’s properties worldwide remained open to provide a safe haven for our long-stay corporate guests, maintaining a robust average occupancy rate. With China being the first major economy to resume growth after the pandemic and the easing of domestic travel restrictions in the country, we are seeing strong recovery at our properties in China.”

“To provide guests with peace of mind, we launched the ‘Ascott Cares’ commitment to continue to deliver stringent hygiene and cleanliness standards. Ascott has also partnered with Bureau Veritas to provide independent audits for the hygiene and safety standards of our properties worldwide. At the same time, we have also been actively implementing various initiatives such as the launch of our ‘Discover ASR’ mobile app, ‘Work-In-Residence’, ‘Space-as-a-Service’ and our digitalisation efforts, to ensure Ascott is future-ready,” added Mr Goh.

Mr Tan Tze Shang, Ascott’s Managing Director for China and Head of Business Development for China, said: “During China’s Golden Week holiday from 1 to 9 October 2020, several of Ascott’s properties in cities such as Beijing, Shanghai, Hangzhou, Suzhou, Chongqing, Xi’an and Wuxi, which are popular destinations amongst domestic travellers, achieved 100% occupancy. Apartment revenue for our properties in China was also higher during the Golden Week holiday compared to the same period last year.”

Mr Tan added: “With the 12 new properties secured in China, Ascott will make inroads into three new Chinese cities, Baotou, Ningbo and Yantai, while strengthening our presence in Changchun, Guangzhou, Hangzhou, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Suzhou and Xi’an. These properties are slated to open between December 2020 and 2026. The new additions will reinforce Ascott's position as the largest international serviced residence owner-operator in China with about 30,000 units in over 150 properties.”

Ascott forays into Austria, expands in Indonesia
In addition to the properties secured in China, Ascott has also signed contracts for 10 more properties and over 1,600 new units across various countries such as Austria and Indonesia. These properties are set to open between 2021 and 2024.

Ascott has made its first foray into Austria, one of Central Europe’s most popular travel and investment destinations. Citadines Danube City Vienna will open in the country’s capital, Vienna in 2022. The new addition will expand Ascott’s footprint in Europe to more than 6,500 units in 54 properties.

Ascott has also further strengthened its presence in Indonesia, adding six properties in prominent cities such as Jakarta and Batam.

New properties opened in 2020
In 2020, Ascott has opened 17 properties with over 2,400 units. This includes seven new properties with over 1,200 units in Changsha, Guangzhou, Shanghai and Tianjin in China.

Outside of China, Ascott has opened 10 new properties with close to 1,200 units in Singapore; Bangkok in Thailand; Bangka Belingtung Island in Indonesia; Bundang in Korea; Gold Coast, Perth and Sydney in Australia; Osaka in Japan; London in United Kingdom; and Tours in France.

Please see Annex for highlights of some of the newly secured properties.

To deliver more value, flexibility and enhance the experience for members of its loyalty programme, Ascott Star Rewards (ASR), Ascott has recently launched its new ‘Discover ASR’ mobile app, which is available on Apple App Store, Google Play Store, Huawei AppGallery and Xiaomi App Store. From now till 10 November 2020, Ascott is also running the #DiscoverASR ‘Level Up: Local Insider’ weekly contests and content series through its #DiscoverASR Virtual Travel Festival, to give away over S$6,000 worth of ASR points and staycations at ASR participating properties. Ascott has also launched a series of other initiatives such as the ASR Points Purchase feature and ASR Elite Status Match programme.

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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 190 cities across over 30 countries in Asia Pacific, Central Asia, Europe, the Middle East, Africa and the USA.

Ascott has more than 69,000 operating units and over 50,000 units under development, making a total of more than 119,000 units in 770 properties.

The company’s serviced residence and hotel brands include Ascott The Residence, The 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 Business Traveller Asia-Pacific Awards 2020 for ‘Best Serviced Residence Brand’; 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 China Awards 2019 for ‘Best Luxury Serviced Residence Brand’; and TTG China Travel Awards 2019 for ‘Best Serviced Residence Operator in China’.

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 about S$134.7 billion as at 30 June 2020. 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 220 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.

CapitaLand places sustainability at the core of what it does. As a responsible real estate company, CapitaLand contributes to the environmental and social well-being of the communities where it operates, as it delivers long-term economic value to its stakeholders.

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