Sofitel, the Accor owned hotel chain, has been relaunched as an international luxury brand.


At a press conference in Beijing today the company unveiled its plans to upgrade its network of hotels by 2010.


The new brand, which is currently operating in the upscale hotel market, will exist in three formats: the luxury brand, unveiled at the new Sofitel Wanda Beijing today, the Sofitel Legend, which is a collection of historical properties, and So by Sofitel, a chain of boutique hotels.


Sofitel


Sofitel Wanda Beijing


Accor revealed it has set up a new stand-alone company to run the new range of hotels. A new chief operating officer, Robert Gaymer-Jones, has been appointed to reposition the brand. He joins from Marriott International where he was vice-president for the UK and Ireland.


Sofitel Wanda Beijing


Sofitel Wanda Beijing


Accor said it expects some properties which cannot meet the high specifications of the new Sofitel branding to be absorbed into others such as its newly launched Pullman brand.


Sofitel Wanda Beijing


Yann Caillere, Sofitel chief executive and a member of Accor’s executive committee, said: “By 2010 we will have a consistent network of 139 business and resort hotels in prime locations around three distinctive and clear offerings which address the specific needs and expectations of luxury guests.”