The company’s 2021 development performance was particularly strong in Europe, China, and the Middle East. Europe represented the #1 market for Accor with 153 new hotels signed, representing +20% growth vs 2020. China held Accor’s #2 spot for signings last year, with the highest percentage growth at +39% vs 2020, while the Group’s India, Middle East, Africa, Turkey (IMEAT) region increased its strategic position year-over-year. In terms of overall value, the IMEAT region is now the largest growth driver for Accor. Of note, more than 40% of Accor’s worldwide development projects involve the refurbishment of existing buildings rather than new builds, in line with the company’s environmental, social and governance (ESG) commitments.
“In 2021, we continued to reinforce our leadership position in the regions where we have historically led the competition, while building strong momentum in the key markets of North America and China,” said Agnès Roquefort, Global Chief Development Officer, Accor. “We are projecting an even higher pace of growth this year and are pleased to have resumed signing new hotels at a rate of one per day. We are extremely grateful to our development teams around the world who are doing a fantastic job of pushing projects forward, exceeding targets, and opening new doors – despite ongoing supply chain challenges, geo-political tensions, stringent health and safety regulations, and post-pandemic recoveries which continue at a varied pace.”
2021 – a year of firsts
Accor’s development team achieved several milestones in 2021, particularly in China, where new project signings reached an all-time high – leading to more than 520 hotels currently operating in the region and an additional 350 under development. The first destination was signed for Accor’s newest luxury brand, Emblems Collection, for the development of a magnificent flagship hotel in Guizhou province: Guiyang Art Centre Hotel, Emblems Collection.
The first two Orient Express destinations in the world were also announced in 2021, with the signings of Orient Express Grand Hotel de la Minerve in Rome, Italy and Orient Express Diriyah Gate in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Complementing the hotel projects, the luxury brand also announced a rail tourism project in partnership with Arsenale S.p.A. in December, Orient Express La Dolce Vita. Welcoming passengers in 2023, the exciting endeavor includes six trains that will travel from Northern to Southern Italy, across 14 regions and beyond, including three international destinations from Rome to Paris, Istanbul and Split.
Another luxury milestone included the first Banyan Tree in the Middle East, Banyan Tree Doha La Cigale Mushaireb in Qatar, which made its official debut in 2021. Continuing the brand’s momentum in the region, a second location will follow later this year, Banyan Tree AlUla in the Asher Valley of Saudi Arabia.
Brilliant design concepts were key to Accor’s strength in its high-volume economy and midscale brands last year, such as the introduction of the first ibis Square concept hotel at ibis Timisoara, Romania. The first Novotel RF Studio guestroom reflecting the brand’s new vision for hotel design debuted at Novotel Dubai Jumeirah Triangle, UAE; while Novotel Mexico City Toreo proudly opened the first Novotel showcasing the Sundukovy Sisters guestroom design concept. In addition, Accor was delighted to receive its first Polish Green Building Council (PLGBC) Green Award for sustainable real estate development at Mercure Katowice Centrum, Poland.
With the hospitality industry’s most diverse network of brands, Accor’s luxury and premium offerings continue to drive up the value of the Group’s development portfolio, while its economy and midscale segments continue to drive volume. This balance is key to Accor’s successful development model, providing the Group with the power and flexibility to seize growth opportunities the moment they arise.
Versatile brands such as greet, ibis Styles, Mercure, and Mövenpick represented 48% of signed rooms in 2021 (182 hotels and 27,500 rooms, +54% versus 2020) and are anticipated to generate significant interest again in 2022. Also contributing to the aforementioned growth metric were Accor’s two collection brands, MGallery Hotel Collection and Emblems Collection. Both are designed with the needs of independent and boutique hotel owners in mind, providing brand standards that are flexible, light, and respectful of the hotels’ unique identities while allowing immediate access to the power of Accor’s sales, distribution and loyalty platforms.
Looking ahead to the remainder of 2022 and early 2023, Accor’s development and operations teams will open the doors at a myriad of new flagship properties throughout the Group’s brand portfolio, including Raffles London at The OWO; Raffles & Fairmont Doha; Raffles at Galaxy Macau; Raffles Boston Back Bay Hotel & Residences; Sofitel Barcelona Skipper; Sofitel Shanghai North Bund; Rixos Doha Qetaifan Island; The Admiral Hotel Manila – MGallery; Pullman Orchard Singapore; Novotel Mexico City Insurgentes; and Novotel Liverpool Paddington Village; among many more.
Leading the way with lifestyle hospitality
Lifestyle is one of the fastest growing segments of the global hospitality industry, and Accor plans to triple its number of lifestyle hotels by 2023. The Group’s unmatched position in lifestyle hospitality is led by Ennismore, a joint venture in which Accor holds a majority shareholding. Ennismore is a global collective of 14 brands, with 90 operating properties and a further 160+ in the pipeline.
Notable growth and development highlights from Ennismore in 2021 included the signings of a Morgans Originals Legacy in Miami, USA; The Hoxton, Brussels in Belgium; Hyde Paradox Hotel London City, UK; SO/ Maldives; and TRIBE Phnom Penh Post Office Square, Cambodia. Successful openings in 2021 included SO/ Sotogrande, Spain; SLS Dubai & Hyde Dubai Business Bay, UAE; Mondrian Shoreditch London, UK; 25Hours Florence and The Hoxton, Rome, Italy; Mama Shelter Lisbon, Portugal; and JO&JOE Vienna, Austria.
Exciting new Ennismore openings to watch in 2022 include Maison Delano Paris; three openings for The Hoxton with Barcelona, Shepherd’s Bush and Brussels; SO/ Paris; 25hours Copenhagen; Mama Shelter Paris La Défense and Dubai; SLS Puerto Madero; and Mondrian Singapore Duxton.
Gaurav Bhushan, Co-CEO of Ennismore said: “Lifestyle is one of the fastest-growing segments of the hospitality industry, and we’re seeing that through increased demand for our brands, as we quickly bounce back to pre-pandemic levels. In 2021 we opened 15 new hotels, and we’re set to almost double that this year with strong growth in all regions, especially Europe, Americas and the Middle East. There’s no doubt lifestyle brands are recovering faster from the impact of the pandemic, helped by strong local and domestic demand, in particular for our restaurants and bars.”
The rising star of branded residences
Accor is the leading global player in the red-hot hotel branded residences sector, achieving a top global position over the past three years. Accor’s portfolio of branded residences is comprised of 35 existing properties operating under 16 brands, 20 newly signed projects in 2021, and 90 branded residences in the pipeline (16,300 units). According to Savills International Development Consultancy, the branded residential sector has grown 230% over the past decade, adding more than 50,000 units across 356 schemes.
Accor’s branded residence projects range from the high-end luxury market to premium and midscale offerings, with an increasing number of highly compelling lifestyle-driven communities. In 2021, Accor launched a dedicated website, allowing interested buyers and browsers to explore Accor’s entire portfolio of private residential enclaves around the world, including residences already in operation and those in development.
Residential development highlights from 2021 included the record sell-out of Mondrian Residences Gold Coast, Australia, and the new sales record of £49 million for a penthouse at The OWO Residence by Raffles, London UK. New Accor openings to watch for in the branded residences space in 2022 include Raffles Boston Back Bay Hotel & Residences; Fairmont Century Plaza Residences in Los Angeles, USA; MGallery Residences MontAzure Lakeside in Thailand; and Pullman Residences Newton, Singapore.
Excited about the year ahead
Overall, Accor plans to open more than 300 new hotels and resorts in 2022, and has a robust development pipeline that is ideally positioned for a return to travel industry growth and recovery. Moreover, with luxury and premium segments now representing close to 40% of future openings for Accor, and travel industry fundamentals steadily improving, the Group expects to see strong growth in fee generation over the next several years.
“Development is the engine that drives Accor and our ability to offer the most diversified brand portfolio in the world allows us to stand out in the market,” added Roquefort. “Throughout 2021, hoteliers turned to us because of the significant revenue boost that Accor’s powerful sales, distribution and loyalty platforms provide, and their satisfaction comes in knowing we’ve got a brand that will comfortably match their property, their guest profiles, and their unique, local aesthetic. This is where we will continue to focus our efforts in 2022, aiming to deliver the right product to the right market, with the right partner, every time.”