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First luxury Raffles brand hotel in Beijing

Raffles International Limited signed an agreement with Beijing Hotel, a hotel under the Beijing Tourism Group (BTG), to rebrand and manage two…

Raffles International Limited signed an agreement with Beijing Hotel, a hotel under the Beijing Tourism Group (BTG), to rebrand and manage two of the four blocks of the Beijing Hotel under Raffles International`s luxury Raffles brand. After a period of renovations and refurbishment, it will be re-launched as the Raffles Beijing Hotel in 2006.

The Beijing Hotel is a historical building of French architectural design. In its illustrious past, it was the center of the social scene in Beijing and had hosted many statesmen, dignitaries and luminaries. A timeless classic, the hotel sits amongst Beijing`s iconic national monuments. It is a stone`s throw away from the Forbidden City and a 5-minute walk from Tiananmen Square. In terms of convenience, its location is unmatched, being within walking distance to the Wangfujing commercial street, only 2 km from the Beijing Railway Station and 30 km from Beijing International Airport.

This contract marks the very first entry of Raffles International`s luxury Raffles brand into China and is our ninth management contract in the past 24 months. With the Raffles Beijing Hotel, the growing portfolio of Raffles International will comprise 40 hotels and resorts in 20 countries, in 34 destinations.

China is a strategic market for Raffles International. Its membership in the World Trade Organisation and the selection of Beijing as the venue for the 2008 Olympics augurs well for China`s economic development and the hotel market.

Said Ms Leong Wai Leng, Chief Executive Officer of Raffles International Limited, I am very pleased that Raffles International has secured this contract to manage the magnificent Beijing Hotel. We are honoured by the show of confidence of the Beijing Tourism Group in Raffles International`s hospitality management expertise. In terms of its landmark status and its rich tradition, the Beijing Hotel is not only a perfect match for the Raffles brand, it also represents a fitting entry of the brand into Beijing, the political capital of China and the seat of its great historical past.

The signing ceremony was graced by Mr Zhang Mao, Deputy Mayor of Beijing City. It was also well attended by senior government officials and top officers of the Beijing Tourism Group, including its Chairman, Mr Duan Qiang and its Director & Vice-President, Mr Li Zhonggen.

Said Mr Duan Qiang, To us, the partnership between Raffles International Limited and Beijing Hotel, a hotel under the Beijing Tourism Group, can be described as a bold and beneficial exploration. The Beijing Tourism Group, in an effort to enhance the branding of its historic, culturally rich hotel and to meet international market demand, had been in discussion with many international hotel management companies. It was Raffles International that we decided to partner, and it is an internationally renowned hotel management company with the highest standards of quality and service. We entrust Raffles International to manage our hotel which has a unique political and historical background as the host of numerous dignities, delegates, leaders and famous people from all over the world. It is an icon and representation of Beijing`s tourism industry at its best.

Established in 1998, the Beijing Tourism Group (BTG) is a wholly owned company of the Beijing Municipal Government. BTG is a rapidly growing organisation, that invests and manages state-owned hotels, restaurants, transport and other travel and tourism related services. BTG has a number of established international partnerships and has been involved in overseas joint-venture investments in the United States, France, Hong Kong, Vietnam and Hungary. Currently, the Group owns total assets worth more than RMB20 billion.

The Raffles Beijing Hotel will have 179 rooms, four food and beverage outlets, meeting facilities, a brand new ballroom and a fitness centre with an indoor swimming pool. It will be resplendent with charm, luxury and the highest service standards that are the marks of distinction of the Raffles brand.