Next Story Group Acquires Melbourne Property to Establish the First LinQ Hotel

Singapore, Singapore City. June 19, 2019

International hospitality company Next Story Group has acquired a new-build hotel at 167 City Road in Melbourne's vibrant waterfront hub of Southbank. The soft opening of the 16-storey, 162-room property is scheduled for 1 September 2019. After a complete fit-out, the hotel will deliver a guest experience that is reflective of the Group's upper midscale LinQ Hotels brand from 1 November 2019.

This will be the Group's first hotel under its LinQ Hotels brand, which offers unconventional independent hospitality for the next generation of travellers. It also delivers a hassle-free experience and offers a great base to explore the destination.

Representing the Group's three core brands, the LinQ Hotel Melbourne Southbank will complement the Next Hotel Melbourne at 80 Collins Street, which is slated to open in Q2 2020 and the Sage Hotel Melbourne, Ringwood, which has been in operations for over a year.

Next Story Group's acquisition further reinforces the importance of Australia as a key market where most of its hotel portfolio is located. It is also aligned with Next Story Group's expansion plans, which focus on strategic growth in Australia, South East Asia and South Asia. Next Story Group is committed to creating differentiated experiences for travellers and aims to establish the right brand in the right location.

"This latest addition to our hotel portfolio has a superb location, right in the heart of Melbourne's Southbank precinct. We are excited about the opening of the LinQ Hotel in Melbourne which is famous for its year-round calendar of social, sporting, arts and cultural events. Coupled with the unique value proposition of our LinQ Hotels brand, we are confident that our new property will be able to deliver strong trading performance," said Darren Edmonstone, Chief Executive Officer of Next Hotels & Resorts.

The LinQ Hotel Melbourne Southbank is the ideal accommodation for both corporate and leisure travellers visiting Melbourne. Just a short walk from the Southbank Promenade, Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre and Crown Entertainment Complex, it provides guests easy access to all the offerings of Southbank, the city's premier destination renowned for its restaurants, art galleries and stylish retailers.

Business travellers will appreciate that the Melbourne CBD is a short walk across the Yarra River from the hotel and it is a 20-minute ride from Tullamarine Airport. Public transport nodes including the Flinders Street Station are also close by, allowing guests to catch a train or tram to anywhere in and around Melbourne. This also makes the LinQ Hotel Melbourne Southbank the perfect base for leisure travellers to explore Melbourne and its multitude of attractions. Sports fans in particular will be thrilled with the hotel's proximity to sporting venues including AAMI Park, MCG and Rod Laver Arena.

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Coming up in November 2019...

Architecture & Design: Biophilic Design

The hospitality industry is constantly evolving to meet and exceed guest expectations. As a result, hotels are always on the lookout for new ways to improve the guest experience, and architecture and design is an essential part of this equation. Bold design is often the most effective way to make an exceptional first impression - an impression guests use to distinguish between brands. One design trend that is being embraced worldwide has become known as “Biophilic Design.” Biophilic design is based on the concept of biophilia, which is the theory that human beings have an innate tendency to seek out nature, natural elements, and natural forms. Biophilic design is more than hotels simply adding a surplus of plants; it involves incorporating specific design elements into a hotel in order to imbue it with a sense of wellness and well-being. Some of those elements include exposure to natural lighting; views of nature and rooms with a view; natural architectural patterns; salvaged or reclaimed woods of all types; reclaimed metals; sustainably sourced stone; living green walls and vertical gardens; and direct and indirect exposure to nature. Hotels that have incorporated biophilic design into their properties are reaping the benefits associated with this trend including reduced stress responses, better air quality, lower energy costs, and more positive guest reviews. Biophilic design has also been shown to improve guest moods and to satisfy consumer demand for environmental responsibility. Savvy hotel owners and managers are aware that nature-inspired elements enhance their guests' comfort and well-being, which is why this trend is becoming so prevalent. Biophilic design is just one topic in the fields of hotel architecture and design that will be examined in the November issue of the Hotel Business Review.