Leisure real estate gears up for tourism recovery

After a gap of two years due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many hotel projects of international brands in Vietnam are expected to be put into operation this year.

Such projects as Regent Phu Quoc, Voco Hotel Da Nang, Best Western Plus Marvella Nha Trang, Radisson Resort Phan Thiet and Mercure Da Lat are scheduled to offer services soon.

Mauro Gasparotti, Director of Savills Hotels APAC, said investors and hotel managers have begun to resume operations, kickstart employment and training plans, and boost marketing campaigns in anticipation of the recovery of the international market.

Many countries in the region like Thailand, Indonesia and Cambodia have gradually restored tourism, he said, suggesting Vietnam’s tourism sector step up promotion to affirm itself in the global tourism map.

This needs coordination between agencies, local authorities, organisations and businesses operating in the sphere, he added.

Since Vietnam piloted the “vaccine passport” programme last November, the country welcomed nearly 9,000 international tourists, which is a modest number due to the programme's rather stringent requirements. 

However, the country will fully open its doors to international tourists from mid-March, and foreign arrivals will not need to book tour packages as required in the trial phase once they satisfy regulations set by the Ministry of Health.

The policy would help hotels and leisure real estate revive after the pandemic hiatus.

Vietnam aims to serve 65 million holidaymakers this year, including 5 million foreigners.

Matthew Powell, Director of Savills Hanoi, held that although leisure real estate is benefiting from domestic tourism, international vacationers will give a boost to the Vietnamese tourism industry.

According to statistics by Savills, the number of branded hotel and resort projects in Vietnam increased from 36 with 8,200 rooms in 2010 to 120 with 32,000 rooms late January, 2022. About 64 regional and international brands have come to the Southeast Asian nation.

Citing the example of cooperation between Vinpearl JSC and Meliá Hotels International, Gasparotti said such partnerships help to raise project values and competitiveness, boost regional development and lure more investors.

Gasparotti and other experts, however, stressed the need to select brands carefully, saying they should match operational models of projects to match diverse tourism demand.