YOO Worldwide, the global designer residence and hotel brand, has set its sights firmly on Vietnam following the recent launch of its new regional headquarters in Southeast Asia.
The UK-based company was created by leading property developer John Hitchcox and international designer Philippe Starck with a mission to enrich lives through extraordinary living spaces. It is now the largest pure residential design brand in the world, with 81 projects in 36 countries, and a number of hotel management and design projects in the pipeline.
Building on these foundations, YOO is now planning to introduce its “out-of-the-box” place-making concepts into Vietnam, one of the world’s most exciting emerging destinations and a hot ticket for tourism and real estate developers.
There are several factors contributing to the desirability of Vietnam; the country’s economy is forecast to expand 6.8 percent in 2019¹, faster than China, and Vietnam’s middle class is expected to account for approximately one-third of the total population by 2020. This rising affluence is driving a strong domestic real estate sector, as well-heeled Vietnamese seek stylish new investment opportunities.
By opening its first Southeast Asian office, located in Bangkok, YOO is now able to tap into the soaring demand for high-end branded residences in Vietnam. The company will now offer its visionary, design-led services to the region’s high-end property developers. Its partnership with ONYX Hospitality Group will also create opportunities for hotel projects under two distinctive hotel brands, YOO Collection and Yoo2.
Driving the company’s expansion will be Rich Millar, YOO Worldwide’s Vice President of Business Development – Asia Pacific, who will be addressing this month’s Hospitality Vietnam Conference (HVC). Running from 10-11 April 2019 at the Hotel Nikko Saigon in Ho Chi Minh City, this important event will cover a broad range of tourism, hospitality and leisure topics with high-level speakers.
“YOO is very excited about the potential for growth in Vietnam. This is a highly populous country with a burgeoning middle class and a government that is creating positive conditions for investment and development. We see huge opportunities for YOO’s cutting edge concepts among Vietnamese investors, who are increasingly seeking innovative, design-led brands. YOO will bring something truly unique to the market,” Mr Millar said.
“We are looking to shake things up a bit. We don’t believe in residences or hotel rooms – we believe in amazing spaces. Harnessing the creative flair of star designers like Philippe Starck, Marcel Wanders, Jade Jagger, Steve Leung and Sussanne Khan, supported by our own incredibly talented design studio, YOO will work with Vietnam’s leading developers to bring their visions to life,” he added.
Vietnam’s tourism industry is currently riding the crest of a wave; the country welcomed a record 15.5 million international visitors in 2018², up 20 percent compared to the previous year. This is driving a wave of new hotel developments, with more than 23,000 new rooms currently under construction nationwide³ – almost 25 percent of the country’s existing supply.
This surge is not only confined to major cities like Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City and Danang, however; Vietnam is seeing rising demand in many emerging destinations such as Cam Ranh, Phu Quoc, Vung Tau, Quang Binh and many more. With a warm tropical climate and 3,260km of stunning coastline, including pristine sandy shores, it is no surprise that tourists and investors are flocking to Vietnam.
Branded residences are among the hospitality industry’s fastest-growing sectors, and YOO is at its forefront with 13% of the world’s total portfolio. YOO’s international team is now primed to enter Vietnam’s emerging lifestyle market by delivering branded residences and hotels to design-conscious consumers and property developers.
For more information about the Hospitality Vietnam Conference (HVC) 2019, please visit hospitality-asia.com/hvc2019.
¹ Asian Development Bank (ABD) forecast
² VNAT International Visitor Statistics Full-Year 2018
³ STR Asia Pacific Pipeline Report February 2019