APPLE HOTEL KUALA LUMPUR
Apple Hotel Sdn Bhd. is a unique budget hotel franchise, is expected to be made the Permodalan Nasional Bhd. (PNS) as its partner to expand hotel operations throughout the country.
Apple Hotel Managing Director, Jerry Ho, said the both sides have held a series of negotiations to make it a reality. According to Ho, civil servants have been interested in becoming a partner and invest into the company, but the amount of investments and holdings have not been finalized.
He said:”We are still in discussions on matters of technical and financial structure in the Apple Hotel. “However, the partnership is expected to be implemented this year,” Ho told Utusan Malaysia. Apple Hotel was established in 2008 and has a branch in Jalan Alor, Bukit Bintang. PNS is said to have its own agenda and to adopt the concept of Apple’s business model in franchise hotels.
Ho said that one model is to create a civil and syariah compliance operations to increase the involvement of local entrepreneurs, including hotels. “PNS are interested in the concept offered by Apple Hotel to develop local bumiputera entrepreneurs, all our staff are local employees,” he said. Ho said the PNS also offers a number of new properties located throughout the country to be developed as Apple Hotel included in Langkawi in Kedah and Kelantan.
Asked about his future plans, he said he is currently renovating the phase 2 Apple hotel at Jalan Alor in Kuala Lumpur, intends to open four more branches next year Apple Hotel. He said the four hotels are located in Ipoh with 200 rooms, Pontian (50 rooms) and Batu Pahat (80 rooms) at Sunway in Selangor and Johor with 50 rooms.
Ho said the cost of building four hotels is about RM50 million, adding that there is also shortlist 10 applications to open Apple Hotel as a Franchise in other areas.
Ho explained, Apple Hotel differs from another budget hotel because it prioritizes comfort to the user with five star rooms and pillow cases and towels are provided free of charge. He said each room is an area of 11,square meters (120 feet). Ho said he now enjoys 85 percent occupancy rate on weekdays and 100 percent on weekends with guests from Asia and Europe. He said that so far, 50 percent of its customers are foreign tourists covering 144 countries, while others are professionals, corporate executives and families.
Apple Hotel is a smoke-free hotel stays and rates as cheap as RM88 to RM138 He added that it hoped to penetrate the overseas market next year at the earliest after three years based in Malaysia and Singaporewould became the first target. Ho said it is reviewing the price of living in the Malaysia in budgt hotels and is to ensure that Apple Hotel occupancy room rates reasonable.
”After Singapore, we are aiming for operations in Indonesia and Thailand, “he said.