NH Hotel Group, the Spanish hotel chain, has launched a new Chinese joint venture with HNA Group, the owner of Hainan Airlines.
The company will now be known by the Chinese name ‘Nuo Han’, which it says represents “a promise to meet the guest expectations and bring them a brilliant future”. It also announced its Chinese development plans, including two new hotels to launch in southern China’s Hainan province before the end of the year.
The newly-formed joint venture, Beijing NH Grand China Hotel Management (NH China), will be based in Beijing. The partnership follows the Memorandum of Understanding signed between NH and HNA in 2014, during the visit of Spanish President Mariano Rajoy to China.
NH said in a statement that the purpose of the joint venture is to “build a portfolio of NH Hotels and NH Collection brand hotels in the midscale and upscale segments in China owned by HNA or by third parties”.
The companies have set a target of developing between 120 and 150 hotels by 2020, 10-20 of which are expected to launch before the end of 2016.
Two of these will be the 334-room NH Sanya Phoenix International Airport and the 1,001-room NH Haikou Meilan International Airport, which are scheduled to open in the second half of 2016. The new properties will exploit Hainan Airlines’ strong presence at these airports, and the Haikou property will become the largest NH hotel in the world.
The companies said they are also pursuing properties in Beijing, Shanghai and Hangzhou, as well as other “key tier two and three cities in China”.
HNA Group currently operates a vast portfolio of travel businesses, including multiple airlines, tourism businesses and hotels. It has also taken stakes in overseas airlines including France’s Aigle Azur and Brazil’s Azul. NH meanwhile, operates almost 400 hotels in across Europe, Africa and the Americas.