Hotel Nikko Nara to Open in Historic Nara City July 2005 … Sixth Nikko Property in Kansai Area

TOKYO, May 2 /PRNewswire/ — JAL Hotels Co., Ltd., operator of the Nikko Hotels International group of luxury international hotels, announced today that it will open “Hotel Nikko Nara” in historic Nara City, Japan, on July 1, 2005. Currently operated as “Mitsui Garden Hotel Nara,” the hotel will undergo gradual renovations without closing.

Opened in 1998, the large hotel is fully equipped with a wide range of facilities that cater to both domestic and international tourists. Located a short walk from the JR Nara Station, which serves as an entrance to this renowned tourist destination, the hotel has 330 guest rooms, three dining facilities, seven banquet facilities and a Japanese-style communal bath. Hotel Nikko Nara will be JAL Hotels’ sixth hotel in Kansai area.

Originally known as Heijo, Nara was Japan’s first permanent capital, established in 710. Nara is the home of various World Heritage sites such as Todaiji Temple, which houses one of the world’s largest Buddha statues. The city is famous for its Buddhist art and architecture, classified in Japan as National Treasures and Important Cultural Assets. It is also well-known for Nara Park, home to hundreds of free-roaming deer. They are considered messengers of the gods in the Shinto religion and have become a symbol of the city and have even been designated a National Treasure.

Nikko Hotels International is an international luxury hotel group operated by JAL Hotels Co., Ltd., a subsidiary of Japan Airlines, headquartered in Tokyo. In addition to Nikko Hotels, JAL Hotels also operates Hotel JAL City, a chain of 11 mid-priced hotels for business travelers in Japan. JAL Hotels Co., Ltd. has 59 hotels worldwide, in Europe, the Americas and throughout Japan and the Asia/Pacific region. Through a global alliance with the Le Meridien hotel brand formed in 2000, Nikko Hotels’ guests now have access to Le Meridien hotels worldwide, extending Nikko Hotels’ marketing network to more than 170 hotels in over 63 countries and territories. The Nikko Hotels partnership with Le Meridien covers Le Meridien properties worldwide.

In June 2005, the company will open 121-room “Hotel Nikko Hitachi” and 257-room “Hotel Nikko Himeji” in Japan, and 160-room “Palau Royal Resort.”

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