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@Ease to open in Sabah

@Ease to open in Sabah
Wednesday, September 05, 2007
It’s a new hotel brand of Value Hospitality Group

By Marsha Tan

MALACCA: Value Hospitality Group, which currently manages eight hotels under the four-star Everly and three-star Prescott brands, will open its first hotel under a new brand – @Ease – in Sandakan, Sabah, next month.

Group general manager Dennis Tan said @Ease, which is a mid-level boutique hotel, would feature a new design but offer the same efficient management and services as the group's other brands.

“The rooms are smaller but set up in a trendy and contemporary design. The name @Ease is to reflect our concept which is just that – to put our guests at ease,” Tan said in an interview.

If discussions went well, a second hotel under the new brand would open in Kuala Lumpur by year-end, he said.

The 129-room boutique hotel in Sandakan would be run by an initial 20 staff, Tan said, adding that the opening room rates would be RM80 to RM120. In 2006, the group achieved revenue of RM44.5mil, gross operating profit of 15%, and average occupancy rate of 72.8%.

Tan said to ensure customer satisfaction, the group had invested some RM750,000 over the last five years in research and development (R&D).

“We are different in the sense that we develop a lot of software that makes us not only more efficient but able to provide better customer service,” he said. For example, the R&D department had developed software to improve the night audit process.

“We can programme (the system), say, for everything to be completed by 3am, so if the person in charge does not finish the audit on time, automatically an e-mail goes out to me that the audit was not done,” said Tan.

The group’s hotels would be the first in the world to implement such an audit system when it was fully installed, he said, adding the group was looking into the use of personal digital assistants instead of walkie-talkies to check rooms.

Set up in 1990, the hotel operator and turnaround specialist currently employs over 600 professionals in all properties under its management.

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