All Property Residences: Travelling Home
The design-centric hospitality management company Alila Hotels & Resorts introduces the opportunity for investors to own a piece of their dream holiday destination. Luo Jingmei reports.
Mention the name ‘Alila’ and seasoned travellers will rave about the boutique hotel management company’s design-centric establishments, unique locations and high-end hospitality experiences. Established in 2001 by Mark Edleson, in collaboration with his Indonesian partners, the brand is also synonymous with its ethos of sustainable tourism that integrate “commerce, conservation and community”. Its establishments meet high eco standards with EarthCheck certifications and places great emphasis on the preservation and promotion of local site and culture.
The brand’s properties have engaged the region’s best architects, such as Singapore-based WOHA Architects and SCDA Architects (for Alila Villas Uluwatu and Alila Villas Soori respectively), in the creation of iconic architecture that nestle into the landscape of pristine beaches and hilltop enclaves in Asia. Growing from strength to strength, Alila now manages 13 establishments, with an additional 19 currently under construction including three that opens this year: Alila Seminyak in Bali, Alila Solo in Java, and the company’s first China hospitality destination, Alila Anji in Zhejiang.
In February this year, the Alila brand continued the development of its portfolio with the launch of four Alila Property Residences: Alila Dalit Bay, Sabah in the Malaysian Borneo Rainforest located on the island’s northern coast, Alila Villas Bintan on the Indonesian island just a 45-minute ferry ride from Singapore, Alila Villas Koh Russey in Cambodia amid the Koh Rong archipelago, and The Cliff at Alila Villas Uluwatu, the last an expansion of one of Alila’s most popular resorts in Bali’s Bukit Peninsula with its iconic slatted villas located on a limestone cliff. All of these properties will be completed in 2016.
Investors will be able to choose from a range of one- to four-bedroom villas. They not only will have exclusive access to the respective resort’s luxurious facilities, but also have an opportunity to generate a return on their investments by ‘leasing’ their property on the respective resort’s rental pool of villas. Of course, owners will also be able to enjoy the creative work of established and up-and-coming architects, interior designers and landscape designers from Singapore and around the region. Alila Dalit Bay’s longhouse-inspired architecture is by AREA Designs, with interiors by Distillery, green environs by Salad Dressing and lighting design by Switch. Alila Villas Koh Russey’s architecture is designed by Singapore-based, husband-and-wife firm studiogoto, and WOHA Architects continue their sensitive architectural touch with Alila Villas Bintan and The Cliff at Alila Villas Uluwatu.
Alila Hotels & Resorts’ Chief Marketing Officer Doris Goh shares more about this new adventure.
How would you describe the philosophy of the Alila Hotels & Resorts’ brand of hospitality establishments and how has it evolved since its inception?
Brand Alila has stayed true to its founding philosophy – of bringing authentic destination experiences that showcase the place, culture and its people but at the same time minimising the carbon footprint, in support of sustainable tourism. Alila has come into its own as an innovative, purpose-driven design brand. As we expand brand Alila into new developments, we work with our partners on adopting our green ethos as the foundation to operate, manage and grow the business.
What about these properties are unique compared to other kinds of hotel-related properties?
Alila is about artisanal living and experiential travel where we promote sustainable and green tourism as part of our operating ethos. Our hotels are developed with an end in mind. Some of our developers offer individuals and companies the opportunity of lifestyle investment into the real estate component within an Alila resort. It fulfils the wish for someone to own a vacation home yet being able to invest in tourism hospitality. It also gives owners a peace of mind to know that the property upkeep and maintenance will be executed to the Alila hospitality standards while enjoying unlimited access to their ‘Alila journey’ whenever they want to in a genuine home-away-from-home context.
What are your thoughts about the current hospitality environment and SE Asia’s position as a destination?
The hospitality industry in Asia is growing in leaps and bounds as there are many under-developed regions and affordable real estate. In China and India alone, there are now more new travellers than all the matured markets put together. These new aspiring travellers are curious and hungry for new concepts and are just learning about trends and finding their leisure likes and options.
What is brand Alila’s reaction to this?
In the last two years, our company has been working towards a multi-brand lifestyle hospitality platform, which has resulted in a successful partnership with Commune Hotels & Resorts in the USA. Under Commune in Asia, we now offer a leading portfolio of boutique hotel brands catering to the diverse interests of our global travellers for business and leisure, [where they are able] to customise [experiences] towards their pursuit of eco-luxury, adventure, and cultural and community interaction.