December 15, 2000 — HVS International — Mandarin Oriental, the Hong Kong-based hotel company, which recently acquired the Rafael Group for US $142.5 million, plans further expansion to confirm its position as one of the leading global players in the luxury hotel market.
The Rafael acquisition resulted in Mandarin Oriental increasing its bedroom stock by 20% to around 7,000 bedrooms. The group now comprises ten hotels in Asia, seven hotels in the USA and the Caribbean, and four hotels in Europe.
Further expansion is planned in strategic markets which currently escape the brand, such as Tokyo, Seoul, Beijing and Shanghai in North Asia; Los Angeles and Chicago in the USA; and Paris and Frankfurt in Europe.
China is considered a most important location due to its potential as an outbound market. A flagship hotel in such a key destination as China is perceived as the best way to market the group.
Since the acquisition most Rafael hotels have been rebranded into Mandarin Oriental hotels, although exceptions include The Mark in New York and the Hotel Schloss Fuschi in Salzburg.
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