The times when Western hotel chains where the ones expanding in Asia seem to be over. As the International Herald Tribune reports, the latest trend is Asian hotel chains opening hotels in European locations. Raffles will open the Royal Monceau in Paris, where both Peninsula and Shangri-La Hotels will also be opening new properties soon. In addition, Shangri-La is looking into further projects in London, Moscow and Vienna. Banyan Tree will open hotels on Korfu and Santorini islands in Greece, while Six Sense is looking into the island of Milos. Given the growth prospects in Asia, the stagnating market in Europe and the increasing pressure hotel chains find themselves under, their moves seem counterintuitive at first sight. Considering, however, that an ever more affluent group of Asian tourists is and will be visiting Europe, their plans make perfect sense. Ultimately, these hotels will eat into the market share of European and American hotel chains. Will there be difficulties connected to the entry of these hotels into Europe? I am sorry to say, but I doubt it.
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