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IHG partners with Hainan Airlines to create unique ground-to-air travel experiences

Images by IHG

IHG Hotels & Resorts (IHG) proudly announces a dynamic partnership with Hainan Airlines that offers a richly integrated travel experience across both air and land. The partnership brings to life the ‘IHG Explorer’, a branded aircraft featuring bespoke business class dining options, amplified member benefits and a creative co-branded safety video.

IHG is one of the first international hotel companies to enter the Chinese market and it remains committed to an ‘in China, for China’ business approach, prioritising the development of the Chinese market with a focus on providing a localised ‘True Hospitality for Good’, building hotel brands beloved by guests, and delivering outstanding returns for owners and shareholders. Together, IHG and Hainan Airlines are reimagining travel by incorporating diverse cultural elements into guests’ journeys, while driving the development of tourism through personalised experiences.

The two-year collaboration between IHG and Hainan Airlines was announced at a special event with Jerome Qiu, Chief Operating Officer, IHG Greater China; Florence Hu, Chief Marketing Officer, IHG Greater China; Fenny Chen, Head of Loyalty & Partnerships, IHG Greater China; Ding Yongzheng, Chairman of HNA Aviation Group Co.,Ltd and Hainan Airlines Holding Co. Ltd.; Gao Jian, Chairman of Labor Union, Hainan Airlines Holding Co. Ltd and Li Dianchun, Vice-President of Marketing, Hainan Airlines Holding Co. Ltd. and Liu Jun, Vice-President of Hainan Airlines Holding Co. Ltd. Bringing together the strengths and resources of both companies, the partnership aims to create exceptional ‘in-flight travel experiences’ while enriching travel for those venturing between Hainan Free Trade Port and other major cities.

Redefining Air Travel with Surprises and Innovation

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The partnership has seen the debut of the ‘IHG Explorer’ aircraft, which represents the ongoing commitment of both companies to deliver delightful travel experiences that are full of surprises for passengers. The fuselage of the ‘IHG Explorer’ is painted with IHG’s iconic deep blue colour, marking the first time that Hainan Airlines has launched a fully themed aircraft with a hotel group. The cabin’s overhead luggage compartment is decked with custom decals visible throughout whilst the business class section is adorned with tailored lumbar pillows co-created by the HUALUXE brand and Chinese artist Chen Jiu – immersing travellers in charming Chinese aesthetics as they enjoy the comfort of 180-degree reclining seats.

Before take-off, passengers will watch a creative co-branded safety video that blends IHG’s extensive and varied brand portfolio into essential flight safety instructions. The video highlights a myriad of captivating destinations of the group in China, heightening guests’ excitement for an exceptional journey.

Enjoy the Flavour of the Seasons In-Flight

Amidst a thriving culinary tourism market, guests are increasingly drawn to unique dining experiences and cultural immersions. With its deep understanding of traditional Chinese culture and innovative culinary concepts, IHG is introducing food from its sophisticated Chinese restaurant brand, Cai Feng Lou, aboard business class dining services. Through a seasonally inspired array of exquisite Chinese cuisine, the menu paints a vibrant picture of regional delicacies. The inaugural seasonal menu, ‘Cloud Banquet: Springtime Island Delights’, seamlessly blends classic Cantonese dishes with the local flavours of Hainan, capturing the richness of Chinese culinary heritage. Additionally, HUALUXE Hotels & Resorts has collaborated with Hainan Airlines to offer a co-branded signature tea, ‘HUALUXE Cloud Aroma’, elevating the airborne experience with a touch of the ‘Chinese aesthetics lifestyle’.

A Shared Journey of Seamless Hospitality

IHG and Hainan Airlines will gradually introduce more diverse member benefits during the second quarter of this year, offering IHG One Rewards and Fortune Wings Club members a range of exciting experiences – providing rich member benefits from ground to sky.

Jerome Qiu, Chief Operating Officer, IHG Greater China, said, “Throughout our 49-year presence in Greater China, IHG has consistently prioritised guests’ diverse needs, collaborating with like-minded partners to meet guest demands nationwide, whilst our IHG One Rewards is continually focused on maximising member benefits. Partnering with Hainan Airlines extends this commitment to the air, providing both groups’ members with more immersive travel experiences. From the moment they step onto the plane, guests will be able to enjoy the sense of ‘True Hospitality for Good’ which we aim to convey every day.”

Gao Jian, Chairman of Labor Union, Hainan Airlines Holding Co. Ltd, said: “Over the past two years, guided by Liaoning Fangda Group, New Hainan Airlines has steadfastly intensified its focus on aviation safety, refining its aviation core business to excellence, and aspiring to become a world-class comprehensive aviation service operator with an unwavering commitment to safety, service, and profitability. Demonstrating consistent improvement across all dimensions of safety, service, and efficiency, New Hainan Airlines embodies a revitalized spirit, perspective, and image.

With IHG, a global leader in hospitality, as our collaborator, we will harness our individual strengths in aviation and hospitality to offer customers even more convenient and premium travel services. Together, we will spearhead deep integration between the aviation and tourism sectors, setting a pioneering example for cross-industry collaboration.”

IHG’s extensive portfolio includes 19 hotel brands, with more than 6,300 open hotels in over 100 countries and regions worldwide. The group consistently keeps abreast of guests’ needs and stays sharp in the ever-evolving travel market. As one of the world’s largest hotel loyalty programmes, IHG One Rewards boasts over 130 million members and offers a comprehensive range of rewards including accommodations, entertainment, travel, and shopping.

Through its partnership with Hainan Airlines, IHG is introducing an entirely fresh travel experience that highlights the group’s localisation strategy and dedication to the Chinese market. In the future, IHG will continue to leverage its diverse range of brands, products, and services to surprise travellers with even more exhilarating moments, ensuring that every journey is an exciting adventure.

Tags: ground-to-air, Hainan Airlines, IHG, travel experiences


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