CHAIN hotel brands will be overshadowing independent establishments in Phuket in the near future, with 90 per cent of all developments in the pipeline belonging to an international brand, according to data by consultancy C9 Hotelworks.

From a total of 32 projects slated to open within the next few years, only four will be operated by independents while Marriott and Best Western will come to dominate, collectively controlling more than 25 per cent of Phuket’s supply pipeline in terms of rooms.

An increase of 5,216 rooms between 2016 and 2019 is forecasted, with chains accounting for 4,677 keys.

In terms of number of properties, Louvre has the most in the pipeline with four total, followed closely by Marriott with three. Giants Wyndham, Accor and Starwood, among others, will open two properties each, while small to medium-sized brands such as IHG, Banyan Tree and Kempinski will be unveiling a single property each.

“Sentiment by developers is now firmly leaning on the side of the chains. It is not only reflected by the current pipeline but also demonstrated by a number of recently announced conversions, notably led by French hotel group Accor,” said Bill Barnett, managing director, C9 Hotelworks.

He adds: “We expect this trend to continue, with a secondary shift that takes the form of increased number of hospitality-led residences.”

According to the study, around 34 per cent of these new hotels will be erected in the popular west coast region of Patong.