Earlier this year, I reported that the InterContinental Hong Kong will be undergoing a major renovation soon. The project is estimated to take 12 – 16 months; other than Yan Toh Heen, the 2-Michelin star Cantonese restaurant, the hotel will basically be closed for reservations and other functions. I think the hotel is sorely in need of an update, and I’m definitely interested to see what management decides to do with the renovation.
InterContinental Hong Kong Will Rebrand as the Regent Hong Kong
As a Hong Kong native, the InterContinental Hong Kong has always had a special place in my heart. Back in the late 1990s, this hotel was still known as “The Regent Hong Kong,” before its eventual sale to IHG (then known as Six Continents) in 2001.
But as some of you night know, IHG recently purchased a 51% stake in Regent Hotels & Resorts. Apparently, the chain now plans to rebrand the InterContinental Hong Kong to the Regent Hong Kong (reference in Chinese). This is a very interesting move, but I think it sort of makes sense.
Older Hong Kongers still have an emotional tie to the Regent brand, or remember it as a symbol of “old money.” Heck, I know people from Hong Kong who still call the InterContinental Hong Kong by its old name.
But since there are now two InterContinental properties in Hong Kong, the rebrand will likely be able to help highlight the IC Hong Kong Grand Stanford, which has sort of been under the shadow of the IC Hong Kong. At the same time, they can harness the Regent brand to re-establish an already iconic hotel by the harbor.
IHG plans to rebrand the hotel upon its re-opening, which is slated to occur in 2021.
The InterContinental Hong Kong Pushes Back Renovation Plans
Now, here is an interesting tidbit about the renovation project I mentioned earlier.
The hotel has still not officially announced the exact date on which they would close, though the project was supposed to commence in 2019. At the time, I speculated that they likely wanted to close out the business from Lunar New Year, which is occurring on February 5, 2019.
Yet, reservations for the InterContinental Hong Kong are showing some unusual trends. For instance, you can book a stay for the night of February 16, 2019, at a pretty reasonable price of $325.
Meanwhile, if you attempt to book a stay starting on February 17, 2019, you will notice the price jump to almost $10,000 a night for a Superior Room. Stays after that date incur similar rates, which is likely the hotel deterring people from booking a stay. At $10,000 a night, they can basically afford to “walk” just about anybody.
Given that all media sources now basically say the hotel won’t begin its renovation project until 2020, and the hotel has retracted the press release about a 2019 renovation, I see no reason to believe otherwise. Perhaps the decision to rebrand means some design elements will have to change, and that may very well be the reason for a delay in renovation. Still, I think the fact the hotel has all but “zeroed-out” reservations after February 17, 2019 is pretty interesting.
We shall wait and see…