Low-cost carrier Air Asia is extending its presence to the hospitality industry as budget hotel group Tune, closely linked with the airline, plans to open four locations in Thailand. According to the Bangkok Post, the first property is expected to open in Hat Yai in December, followed by locations in Pattaya, Bangkok, and Phuket in 2012.
This expansion, which began in late 2009, aims to have over 100 locations by 2014. In addition to the announced branches, Tune plans to open 10 more locations throughout Thailand, investing around THB900 million (US$30 million). The Hat Yai Tune Hotel will be renovated from an older property, offering 148 rooms. The Bangkok, Pattaya, and Phuket locations will be newly built, with 130, 192, and 150 rooms, respectively.
A standard room at local Tune hotels, including a bathroom, “five-star” bed, and electric fan, will cost between THB700-900 (US$23.38-30.06) per night. Additional services such as air-conditioning, laundered towels, and WiFi will be available for an extra fee.
Tune Hotels currently operates 12 facilities, with nine in Malaysia, two in Bali, Indonesia, and one in London’s Westminster borough. Since the first Tune Hotel opened in central Kuala Lumpur four years ago, the group has accommodated over 2 million guests. More Tune Hotels are planned for Malaysia, the Philippines, Indonesia, India, Australia, and the UK. Tune is also co-sponsoring the EBA Share Love Charity Concert to raise funds for kidney-dialysis machines at Chulalongkorn Hospital.