New benchmark for SLH members to join ‘Finest Collection’

'Best of the best' stable of scrutinised SLH properties

Small Luxury Hotels of the World has revealed further details of its new ‘Finest Collection’ portfolio of properties which were previewed on social media last week.

Mark Wong, Senior Vice President, Asia Pacific for SLH said the ‘Finest Collection’ are the most superior hotels in the group, that have meet stringent quality controls year in, year out.

To qualify, properties within the Finest Collection have to pass quality assurance inspection for at least three years, and must score at least 90%. The members must also be within a recognised industry portfolio such as American Express or Forbes Travel Guide. SLH’s evaluation panel then select the hotels that best befit the ‘Finest Collection’ standards.

Castello di Reschio, Umbria, Italy - a member of SLH's Finest Collection

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“These are the best examples of an SLH hotel,” Wong said.

As LATTE revealed last week, the initial list comprises 21 hotels, with more than half based in Europe.

Wong explained that members of the Finest Collection will need to ensure they maintain a high performance to hold their place on the list.

“We are setting the bar high for the rest of the other hotels to keep up and make sure that you want to be part of this collection,” he said.

Wong also highlighted a new area of focus for Small Luxury Hotels of the World will be an “alternative form of accommodation” namely outdoor spaces through a partnership with Under Canvas. Under Canvas has 10 luxury tented products primarily in or near US National Parks, including the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, Zion, Moab and Bryce Canyon.

Under Canvas Grand Canyon

Small Luxury Hotels is a global community of 579 independent hotels ranging from farmhouses to urban resorts to desert oases. A further 18 hotels are going through the implementation of joining the stable. New territories for SLH include Pakistan, Poland and Ecuador.

Wong said the B2B market continues to be strong, driving bookings for Small Luxury Hotels of the World. He said agency reservations are up 32% year-on-year – representing 80% of SLH’s core channel of bookings.

The Asia Pacific region accounts for close to a quarter (23%) of SLH’s current portfolio. The average room size of properties network-wide remains around 50 keys, with the majority independently owned and operated, including Small Luxury Hotels of the World’s co-owners Daniel Shamoon and Jennica Arazi.

Shamoon and Arzai own seven properties between them, five of which are in Spain, one in Morocco and one in Antigua and Barbuda, giving them firsthand knowledge and understandings of how hoteliers operate within the SLH community.

Daniel Shamoon, Co-Owner, Small Luxury Hotels of the World
Jennica Arazi, Co-Owner, Small Luxury Hotels of the World

Wong added that Australia (through Ovolo Hotels) and India are focus markets for SLH in the Asia Pacific region.

He also hinted that a campaign to promote Small Luxury Hotels of the World’s strategic partnership with Hilton, announced in February, will launch in the near future.

Lead image: Mark Wong, SVP, Small Luxury Hotels of the World, at ILTM Asia Pacific 2024 yesterday.

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