Ivy Sung, CEO, Faces of Hong Kong
Definition of mid- and upscale hotels in terms of prices and brands
– Midscale: HK$1200-HK$1300; W, Sheraton and New World Millennium Hong Kong.
– Upscale: HK$2000-HK$3000; The Peninsula, Four Seasons and Shangri-La.
Current demand (Looking at corporate travel trends), industries like pharmaceuticals are opting for midscale over upscale accommodation (as they are limited by) their compliance policies amid existing economic conditions.
Current supply The supply seems enough for both categories unless inbound traffic, especially from China, recovers.
Areas for improvement Service standards have dropped (relative to) other Asian cities. The immediate cause is higher labour cost and manpower shortage. Greater work pressure also leaves staff less time to mingle and interact with customers.
Clarificaiton or confusion? Some five-star hotels are beyond five-star standards so the grading cannot reflect the reality. Also, some suppliers are not clear on the difference between the four- and five-star premises.