Best Western hotel chain keeps on expanding in Romanian market

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International hotel chain Best Western seeks to hold 20 hotels by 2010 up from the current 12, thus keeping on its expansion plans.
„The Bucharest-based Best Western Parc will go under Ramada umbrella, while on the other hand we have begun the expansion by the affiliation of Stil hotel and we are currently in talks for another two locations. We have 12 units at present, with such number to go up to 15 or 16 next year; our target is to hold 20 hotels by 2010”, Best Western Romania development coordinator Malin Malineanu told the Ziarul financiar daily.
 
He explained there will be affiliated in Bucharest hotels of up to one hundred rooms, while Hotel Parc that has already been affiliated to Best Western had 267 rooms.
The hotel chain also plans to introduce the four-star-plus brand Best Western Premier in Bucharest. The hotels currently affiliated to Best Western are ranked three- and four stars.
 
Other hotel chains like Ramada and Golden Tulip continue their expansion in the Romanian market, mostly seeking units located in cities other than Bucharest.
Thus, Ramada currently owns six hotels in Romania, while Golden Tulip has affiliated five hotels so far.
The Bucharest hotel market has begun showing its first signs of a sluggish growth this year. „It is obvious that Romania and Bucharest notably have had a beneficial time with large profit margins.
 
As the years went by, such profit margins dwindled under the pressure put by costs. If we had looked at Prague, we could have seen what would happen in Bucharest. Besides the low occupation level at the weekend, we are now seeing a major slowdown of the occupation rate on Mondays and Thursdays”, Malineanu explained.
 
Best Western hotels target both leisure and business traffic, depending on location. The mainly business locations include the capital city, Timisoara and Arad in the west and Cluj-Napoca (central-western Romania), while locations such as Gura Humorului (northern Romania) and St. Ana Lake in the central Carpathians see leisure traffic.
The Best Western affiliated hotels conducted some 12 million euros worth of business last year, with this year’s businesses seen to climb to 16 million euros.
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