Asia leads the global hotel pipeline and many more luxury hotels and wellness resorts will be opening in its fragile environments. Low-impact advocates are trying to lead by example, but they're too small and too few to effect a sea change.
A lot of new hotels are opening in Asia-Pacific. Hotel data company STR’s research shows 2,109 projects representing 470,650 rooms were being built as of July, a 27 percent increase over July 2018. Many of the new properties are in the upscale segments.
Asian countries with the largest pipelines are Indonesia, India, Japan, Thailand, and Malaysia, in that order, according to another report by Lodging Econometrics.
Whichever report you turn to, it’s clear Asia leads the global hotel pipeline, and international chains dominate that growth.
Many projects are also opening in remote or fragile areas. Ever-demanding guests seeking fulfillment in unique stays is a trend that fits like a glove with luxury and wellness. But as the article below by our Singapore contributor Yixin Ng shows, much greenwashing is still going on in development, and it starts right at the drawing board, where the owner or developer imperative to maximize returns clashes head-on with the environmental obligation.
Amid a sea of projects, low-impact luxury advocates like Bangkok-based architect Bill Bensley who are attempting to change the status quo are too few in number and swimming against the current.
If they lose the battle, so does Asia’s beautiful land that is being heavily harvested for tourism.
Somebody throw a life buoy, please.
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Asia Editor Raini Hamdi [[email protected]] curates the Skift Asia Weekly newsletter. Skift emails the newsletter every Wednesday.
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Photo credit: Indonesia: The archipelago has the largest hotel pipeline in Asia, according to Lodging Econometrics. Scott Kuo / Flickr