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Banyan Tree Group moves into a hybrid service apartment/hotel brand

Banyan Tree is looking at launching five properties under a new brand, Cassia which will be an hybrid between service apartments and a hotel.

SINGAPORE – Banyan Tree Group unveiled earlier this month his intention to launch a new brand, taking the hospitality group into a new segment, looking at the ‘service apartment’ market.

Cassia lies in a niche sector between hotels and serviced apartments. It will offer fully-finished one and two-bedroom units for sale, with flexible living and investment options.

Projects are already being planned and developed in Thailand (Phuket), Indonesia (Bintan), China (Lijiang) and Sri Lanka (Beruwala), More projects are planned in Thailand (Bangkok and Chiang Mai), Sri Lanka, Australia (Brisbane), New York, Japan, Seychelles and Vietnam. The group also mulls out the opportunity to invest in the UAE, particularly Dubai and Abu Dhabi. 
With Cassia, Banyan will now have three brands in its portfolio. The group is seeking to expand globally. It has a target of 66 hotels and resorts, with more than 100 spas and galleries, across 33 countries by 2017.
Said Mr Ho Kwon Ping, Executive Chairman of Banyan Tree Holdings: “It is a hundred per cent real-estate, but focusing with a very strong hospitality element to it, and that is bringing our expertise in both areas to launch this new brand.” The group will also stick with Cassia to its principles of sustainable development. 
By certifying to leading global sustainable design standards, Cassia ensures energy & water efficiency as well as an overall low footprint of operations. The built-in environmental management plans and ongoing operational benchmarking commitments of Cassia developments help to ensure a healthy and sustainable home which also safeguards the cultural and ecological beauty of each destination. To best deliver upon Cassia’s commitment to sustainable hospitality, specialist GPS Green is managing the development process. Cassia is committed to both EarthCheck’s design and operational standards, ensuring it meets world’s best practice in holistic sustainable tourism.
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Luc Citrinot a French national is a freelance journalist and consultant in tourism and air transport with over 20 years experience. Based in Paris and Bangkok, he works for various travel and air transport trade publications in Europe and Asia.