Tune sells sleep and shower

Posted on May 3, 2012

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Red Planet Hotels, the parent company of Tune Hotels, will open 15 more properties in Southeast Asia with two properties scheduled to open in Thailand this year in Bangkok and Phuket.

Red Planet Hotels chief executive officer, Tim Hansing, told TTR Weekly that the group is now looking for more opportunities in Indonesia, the Philippines, China and Thailand.

Fifteen properties are scheduled to open by the end of 2013 in three countries; Thailand (two properties), Philippines (five properties) and Indonesia (eight properties).

In Thailand, Tune Hotel Asoke, Bangkok and Tune Hotel Patong, Phuket will open this year. The first property is scheduled to open in September with 130 rooms, while the second property will open in December with 150 rooms.

“The two properties in Bangkok and Phuket are now under construction,” said Mr Hansing. “We are now looking for additional sites in Bangkok to add more properties soon,” he added.

Brand Tune Hotels entered Thailand last year with the opening of Tune Hotel Hat Yai with148 rooms and was followed by Tune Hotel Pattaya (192 rooms) in February this year.

When asked about possible expansion in the Mekong region, he said: “Red Planet Hotels will definitely own and operate Tune Hotels in Vietnam, Cambodia, Myanmar and Laos. We are very much looking forward to taking the Tune brand and concept to these countries in the near future.”

“However, for now our focus remains on Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand, China and Bangladesh and we have a team of acquisition experts looking for opportunities in China.”

Mr Hansing says the business model is based on the success achieved by low-cost airlines.

“Guests can book on line through http://www.tunehotels.com to get the best rates. The earlier you book, the better rate you will gain.”

“When people book a room they get a five-star bed, a shower with a large shower-head, toilet, a ceiling fan, hair dryer and a safe for valuable. These are the basics. What we don’t have are function rooms, swimming pools, spas that are a cost calculated in the room rates even if you do not use them – you are still paying for them.”

At a Tune Hotel, guests pay extra for air conditioning, Wi-Fi, a towel and basic toiletries if they did not bring them along.

Will the low-cost hotel business model have a similar impact on Thailand’s traditional hotel market as it did on the airline industry?

“I don’t believe there will be any real impact on other hotels that can adapt and change to new trends. We believe there is a segment of the travel market that our concept will appeal to. The huge success of low-cost carriers in the region illustrates this point.”

Tune Hotel is delivering the basics and all the extras, some of them traditionally considered basics by many travellers, have been stripped out  to lower the room rate.

In Thailand, taking the air-conditioning out of the basic product, could be a deterrent for travellers considering the heat and humidity. It could also be a mistake to have rooms shut for days without air-conditioning adding to the cost of long-term up-keep.

But Tune is giving a whirl and confidently predicting success.
“We believe our concept will cater to a market in Thailand and expand the country’s attractiveness to travellers that may not have come here before,” he added.

Red Planet Hotels Limited (RPHL) is a regional hotel investment company focused on Asia’s emerging markets. RPHL is developing a portfolio of budget hotels in the following key countries: China; Indonesia; Philippines; Thai and Bangladesh.

The company is an asset owning company that operates its own hotels under a franchise agreement from Tunehotels.com

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