St. Regis Luxury Hotel Set to Open in Lhasa, Tibet

Lhasa Tibet

The St. Regis Lhasa Resort in Tibet is set to open on November 15th of this year, just after the hotel group’s first foray into China with the St. Regis Sanya Yalong Bay Resort, scheduled to open on November 1st. The entry of luxury hotels into China is nothing new, but into Lhasa, just adjacent to the famed Potala Palace no less, is sort of mind-boggling. Tibet has certainly lured visitors for decades, but the area is still rife with poverty and ethnic tensions, not to mention a certain 11,500 altitude of its capital, Lhasa, that makes it hard to breathe. Luxury has literally reached new heights.

The entry of the luxury hotel into Tibet signals yet again our shrinking
planet. Also developing, Cambodia has its fair share of luxury hotels.
So what’s next–Hard Rock Hotel Tibet? Hard Rock Green may be more like
it. The St. Regis Lhasa Resort will be a “green” hotel, utilizing solar
panels and underground water as energy sources, and employing hybrid vehicles.

Tibet’s tourism industry is growing and diversifying–Tibet airlines is
set to grow
this year and the Shangri-La Hotels & Resorts group will be opening a
luxury hotel in Lhasa in 2012.

[Photo by Jenara Nerenberg]