Hilton enters Fukuoka

Guest Writer

MCLEAN, Va. and FUKUOKA, Japan – Hilton Worldwide today announced it has entered into a management agreement with Hawks Town Corporation, to re-brand and manage the JAL Resort Sea Hawk Hotel Fukuoka, on the island of Kyushu in Japan.

The hotel, which first opened in 1995, is slated to commence a USD 20 million refurbishment with the aim of enhancing the guest experience before opening its doors as Hilton Fukuoka Sea Hawk, in June 2010. This latest deal will mark the ninth Hilton Worldwide hotel in Japan, as well as the entry of the full service Hilton Hotels brand into Fukuoka.

With over 1,000 rooms, the existing property is one of the largest hotels in Japan and is uniquely positioned to cater to large MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions) groups and weddings. Located on the waterfront of Fukuoka, the hotel enjoys ocean views and forms part of an extensive and dynamic entertainment complex, Hawks Town, which has been established as the premier regional centre for entertainment and shopping in Kyushu. It also includes the famous FUKUOKA Yahoo! JAPAN DOME, home stadium of the Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks baseball team. Fukuoka is the largest city in Kyushu and considered a strategic gateway city to East Asia, as it overlooks the Korean Strait and is Japan’s closest city to Korea, China and Taiwan.

“Hilton is very proud to have been selected to manage Hilton Fukuoka Sea Hawk,” said Martin Rinck, President – Asia Pacific, Hilton Worldwide. “This landmark deal enables us to expand our nationwide presence and ensures our guests can enjoy the legendary Hilton experience in most of the major Japanese cities. With plans for a comprehensive refurbishment, including enhancement of the executive lounge, food & beverage offerings and leisure facilities, this hotel will soon become a favorite among local, as well as international guests. We are highly committed to working closely with the hotel owner to further develop the already strong reputation of this well regarded property.”

“We are delighted that Hilton Worldwide will manage this hotel which forms an integral part of the Hawks Town complex, one of Fukuoka’s prominent landmarks,” said Eiji Ikawa, President Hawks Town Corporation. “Hilton’s extensive management and Japan market expertise and the attractive mix of facilities within Hawks Town will help ensure that this hotel continues to build on its leadership position in the market and provide guests to Fukuoka with memorable experiences of this exciting and dynamic city.”

Hilton Fukuoka Sea Hawk will feature 1,052 guest rooms and an extensive array of food and beverage outlets, including an all-day dining restaurant, and speciality restaurants and bars. The meeting and conference facilities comprise over 6,000 square meters of function space, including a 4,114 square meter ballroom, six function rooms and 13 meeting rooms.

Other facilities include indoor and outdoor swimming pools and a sauna. It will also feature three wedding chapels that can accommodate more than 900 weddings annually. One of the chapels is scheduled to be completely refurbished as part of the rebranding process. The property’s extensive catering and meeting facilities, its unique location as well as Hilton’s renowned service and brand recognition will position it well to capture a large share of the local wedding market, and international and domestic MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions) business. The hotel is located 20 minutes from Fukuoka Airport by expressway and only 13 minutes from Hakata station. The hotel will remain open during the refurbishment process and will be re-branded and re-launched as Hilton Fukuoka Sea Hawk on 1 June 2010.

About Hilton Worldwide

Hilton Worldwide is the leading global hospitality company, spanning the lodging sector from luxurious full-service hotels and resorts to extended-stay suites and mid-priced hotels. For 90 years, Hilton Worldwide has been offering business and leisure travelers the finest in accommodations, service, amenities and value. The company is dedicated to continuing its tradition of providing exceptional guest experiences across its global brands. Its brands are comprised of more than 3,500 hotels in 81 countries and include Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts, Conrad Hotels & Resorts, Hilton, Doubletree, Embassy Suites Hotels, Hilton Garden Inn, Hampton Inn & Suites, Homewood Suites by Hilton, Home2 Suites by Hilton and Hilton Grand Vacations. The company also manages the world-class guest reward program Hilton HHonors

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