Richard Solomans, CEO of IHG Richard Solomans, CEO of IHG

InterContinental Hotels Group has launched Hualuxe, its first hotel brand specifically designed to target the Chinese market.

The group has developed the upscale brand, eyeing an opportunity for it to be introduced to 100 Chinese cities in the next 15-20 years, as well as in international cities.

Already with 160 properties across 60 cities in the country, IHG will focus on an increasing domestic tourism market, expected to reach 3.3 billion travellers by 2015. Outbound trips from China are also expected to increase from 10 million to 100 million in the next 10-15 years.

IHG has already signed 20 letters of intent for the brand, which they are now looking to develop into contracts, with the first property expected to open in late 2013 or early 2014.

Richard Solomons, CEO IHG, said: “Building on our proven ability to build, develop and nurture brands, we are very proud to be launching Hualuxe Hotels and Resorts - a genuine first for the industry and a unique brand developed by our Chinese team that we know will resonate with the very important, fast-growing, Chinese consumer base.

“Hualuxe takes the best aspects of renowned Chinese hospitality and applies IHG’s international scale, powerful systems and unparalleled insights into the Chinese market to deliver a traditional high-end consistent experience.”

Keith Barr, CEO IHG Greater China, said: “IHG was the first international hotel group to enter China nearly 30 years ago, which gives us a deep understanding of the market and its consumers. We have had great success over the years with the five brands we already have in this market, and we will now leverage our experience, and the strong relationships and reputation we have with customers and owners to establish and grow Hualuxe.”

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