Hilton Worldwide (NYSE: HLT) and DoubleTree by Hilton today announced the signing of a management agreement with Ryukyu Hotel Resort Naha Co., Ltd to re-brand Hotel Nikko Naha Grand Castle and to manage the hotel as DoubleTree by Hilton Naha Shuri Castle. When the converted DoubleTree by Hilton Naha Shuri Castle opens in July 2016, it will be Hilton Worldwide’s 13th operating hotel in Japan.
The DoubleTree by Hilton Naha Shuri Castle will be Hilton Worldwide’s third operating hotel in Okinawa, after Hilton Okinawa Chatan Resort and DoubleTree by Hilton Naha.
Okinawa is a tourism-driven region that is enjoying a steady growth in international visitor arrivals, supported by the government’s tourism promotion campaigns, visa deregulation, favorable exchange rates and an increase in flights and cruise ships. The number of international visitors expected to top 10 million by 2021, which translates to 1 trillion yen in tourism income. The number of domestic visitors is also growing. When the second runway at Naha Airport is completed in 2020, the increased capacity is projected to boost the growth of domestic arrivals from a 1% annually to 7%.
Located at the top of Shuri Hill in Okinawa’s capital city of Naha, DoubleTree by Hilton Naha Shuri Castle is adjacent to the tourist attraction of Shuri Castle, a UNESCO World Heritage site that was once the residence of royalty. Other historical and cultural sites, as well as the city’s most popular shopping and entertainment districts of Kokusai-Dori (about three kilometers) and Makishi Marketplace (about two kilometers), are also less than a 15-minute walk (about 800 meters) from the hotel. DoubleTree by Hilton Naha Shuri Castle is accessible by monorail and also served by Naha Airport, located about seven kilometers away.
“Hilton Worldwide’s global reputation as a leading hospitality company and its intimate knowledge of the Japanese market will give DoubleTree by Hilton Naha Shuri Castle a significant competitive edge that will deliver a strong performance,” said Tatsuaki Makino, Representative Director of Ryukyu Hotel Resort Naha Co., Ltd.
The 20-story DoubleTree by Hilton Naha Shuri Castle will have 333 rooms that offer panoramic views of the city. The hotel will have two specialty restaurants, an all-day dining restaurant, a lounge and a bar. DoubleTree by Hilton Naha Shuri Castle will also offer 1,728 square meters of meeting space, including a 568-square meter ballroom and a chapel for weddings. Recreational facilities will include an outdoor swimming pool.