Best Western Premier Hotel Shwe Pyi Thar has become the first internationally operated hotel to open its doors in Mandalay for more than a decade.
For many years, Myanmar’s second-largest city has had only two large international-standard hotels, both of which are rated 4 stars. Keppel Land’s Sedona Hotel Mandalay is targeted at business guests, and the Mandalay Hill Resort Hotel, formerly managed by Accor, is aimed at tourists.
But since international sanctions began to be relaxed in 2012, global hotel groups have been looking for opportunities across the country, and several have committed to operating hotels in Mandalay.
As of May 6, Best Western International has taken over management of the 91-room Hotel Shwe Pyi Thar, according to a company statement.
The hotel is owned by local company KT Construction Group, and is located around 20 minutes by car to the east of the city centre.
Best Western also noted that it is building a new 200-room wing, with construction on the expansion due to be completed by the fourth quarter of next year.
The project will feature a restaurant, a bar, a swimming pool, a fitness centre, a spa and retail space, according to the announcement, as well as a 660 square metre ballroom, a conference room and a lawn for outdoor events.
Best Western already operates two hotels in Yangon, the 91-room Best Western Chinatown in Latha township, which opened last month, and the 201-room Best Western Green Hill Hotel in Tarmwe township.
In the future, the US hotel group has plans to open a hotel in Nay Pyi Taw, as well as a second hotel in Mandalay, according to the May 6 announcement.
Other international hoteliers are not far behind.
French group Accor has signed with Construction and Decoration (CAD) Construction to operate a Pullman Hotel as part of the Mingalar Mandalay complex, located to the south of the city centre.
The hotel, which is designed by architects Stephen O’Dell and Colin Okashimo, was initially due to be branded as a Novotel.
When it opens later this year, the Pullman will become the city’s first five-star hotel, marking Accor’s return to Mandalay after more than a decade.
The operator managed a Novotel Hotel, which is now the Mandalay Hill Resort Hotel, between 1993 and 2002, before exiting from its Myanmar investments due to the worsening political and economic environment.
Best Western International, based in the American city of Phoenix, has more than 4000 hotels in more than 100 countries and territories worldwide.
Source: Myanmar Times