Updated: 2012-09-29 07:41
By Xu Xiao (China Daily)
Competition in China's luxury hotel market is likely to become tougher as NUO, the first Chinese international luxury hotel brand, enters the fray.
Launched at an inauguration ceremony on Sept 20 at the Temple of Heaven in Beijing, the brand is wholly owned by state tourism giant BTG and jointly developed by German luxury hospitality group Kempinski Hotels.
NUO aims to serve the lifestyle and attitudes of modern China while honoring its cultural heritage as well as supporting contemporary art and culture, said Michael Henssler, president of Kempinski China operations.
Henssler said the NUO brand stands on four pillars: Chinese heritage, luxury, contemporary feel and a "green" approach.
An example is the tea pavilion under a Chinese scholar tree at every NUO hotel experience.
However its properties will vary according to locale. In Beijing, the hotel will feature Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) culture and style, while in Shenyang, it will have Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) attributes. In Hangzhou, it will have a Southern Song Dynasty (1127-1279) feel to reflect the city's status as the dynasty's capital.
Along with the anticipated opening of its flagship hotel in Beijing in 2015, NUO will also open a Shanghai property and several other landmark properties in different Chinese cities.
Henssler said NUO will grow to be "modern but rooted in Chinese culture".
The chain vows a commitment to the environment and home communities. Henssler said that the NUO Hotel Beijing will have its own organic farm to ensure the quality of food served in the hotel.
(China Daily 09/29/2012 page13)