China Airlines, Accor sign contract to operate new hotel

The China Post staff

CAL Hotel Co. Ltd., China Airlines’ solely invested subsidiary, recently signed a deal with Accor, the European leader in hotel management, to operate a new world-class airport hotel near Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport. Philip Wei, Chairman of China Airlines, said CAL chose Accor as its partner because the French group’s four-star Novotel brand, with 450 properties globally, is a famous brand and a leading name in airport hotels.

The new hotel, called “Novotel Taoyuan International Airport Taipei,” is scheduled to open in September 2009. The 360-room hotel is being built by CAL Hotel Co. Ltd., and will be managed by Accor Group. The hotel will be eight stories tall, plus a one-story basement, with facilities for leisure and business travelers. These facilities will include two restaurants — one for all-day dining and one for special occasions — a ballroom, lounge bars, five meeting rooms, a business center, a swimming pool, a modern fitness center and a kids’ club. When it opens, Novotel Taoyuan International Airport Taipei will be the closest hotel to the airport, less than 1.5 kilometers from the main terminal complex. The airport itself is only 35 kilometers from Taipei city, and when the MRT system reaches the airport, it will provide even greater convenience for China Airlines passengers and Novotel guests. The new Novotel hotel will be the first Accor managed hotel in Taiwan. The potential market includes transit passengers, aircrew, and local corporate customers. At the signing ceremony, Accor Asia Pacific Regional Director Michael Issenberg thanked CAL for the opportunity to manage what will be an outstanding new Novotel presence. He added that the opening of the new hotel reflects the growing importance of Taipei for business, leisure and transit passengers. Novotel is Accor’s original and most famous brand. Accor manages nearly 4,000 hotels worldwide, ranging from economy to deluxe standards, and it is making an effort to extend Novotel as a leading airport hotel brand. Accor has already opened airport Novotels in four places in the region, namely Hong Kong, Guangzhou, Bangkok and Hyderabad, India. The new property at Taoyuan International Airport will be Accor’s fifth airport hotel in Asia. In September 2006, the Civil Aeronautics Administration and China Airlines signed a 50-year contract to construct a large build-operate-transfer project at Taoyuan International Airport. The project, called Taoyuan International Airport Airlines Operation Center, spans 50 years, including three years for construction, and the remaining 47 years for operations. There will be three developments in this new complex: CAL’s corporate head office, its crew training and dispatch center, and the four star Novotel airport hotel. The new Novotel hotel and the China Airlines operation center will further elevate the international status of Taoyuan International Airport, the airline said.