And the winners are ... The votes are in and business travellers across the region have had their say on Asia's best hotels.

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For the fourth time, the Portman Ritz-Carlton, Shanghai has been named Overall Best Business Hotel in Asia and Ritz-Carlton has also been named Hotel Group of the Decade 1997 - 2005, a new award for 2005.

The Best Business Hotels in Asia Awards, now in their eighth year, have become one of the most sought after prizes in the highly competitive Asia Pacific hotel industry. The awards were established in 1998 to recognise the hotels that provide the business travellers with excellence in service and facilities, and to encourage quality throughout the business hotel industry.

The prestigious Awards honour the top business hotels from 14 countries across Asia Pacific in 17 different categories with two new categories listed for 2005--Hotel Group of the Decade and Best & Most Consistent Business Hotel in Asia 1997-2005.

This year over 100 hotels were nominated and more than 16,000 votes were received--both online and using the coupon found in Business Asia Magazine.

Business travellers were asked to nominate their favourite hotels across the 16 different categories and then to name their choice for Best Business Hotel in Asia.

The Ritz-Carlton has again this year dominated the awards taking out the top prize for its Shanghai hotel and winning Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea and Hotel Group of the Decade categories. This will be the 6th time in a row the hotel has won the Malaysia category.

Conrad Hong Kong has shown great form, winning the Hong Kong category as well as the new award for 2005--Best & Most Consistent Business Hotel in Asia.

Pan Pacific Hotel International Airport, Kuala Lumpur, has held it's position as the dominating hotel for Best Airport Hotel category. The hotel has won the category since it's introduction in 2000. The hotel continues to keep it's secret on how to be the best Airport hotel--many others would love to know what it is.

The Taj West End Hotel in Bangalore is a first time winner of the Best Business Hotel in India and Shangri-La, Jakarta has returned to win the Best Business Hotel in Indonesia category--the first time they won the award was in 1999.

The Park Hyatt Tokyo has also had a return to victory, since first winning the award in 1999 for Best Business Hotel in Japan.

And another first time winner is the Sheraton Saigon Hotel & Towers taking out the title of Best Business Hotel in Vietnam.

OVERALL BEST BUSINESS HOTEL IN ASIA

WINNER: Portman Ritz-Carlton, Shanghai

Located 20 minutes from the Hong Qiao International Airport and 40 minutes from Pudong International Airport, the 578-room Portman Ritz-Carlton, Shanghai is a landmark located in a retail, dining and entertainment complex on the famous Nanjing Road.

Services and facilities include six restaurants and lounges serving Chinese, Italian, Japanese and Western favorites. An extensive health club with swimming pool, gym, squash and racquetball courts, 24-hour business centre, 24-hour gymnasium and a full service hair salon.

From a private dinner for 10 to an annual meeting for 500, The Portman Ritz-Carlton, Shanghai has all the ingredients that event planners look for in a five star hotel partner. Complete catering, conference and audio-visual services are offered at the hotel, as well as 24-hour Business Center and Technology Butler services. Clients seeking distinctive entertainment venues outside the hotel can arrange for outside catering services in several of Shanghai's landmarks and the "Sheng Rong Guo Ji" Luxury Cruise Boat that is exclusively catered by The Portman Ritz-Carlton.

All meeting and event planners work with a dedicated conference services and catering manager who personally supervises the details of the event, including the decor, entertainment and transportation; ensuring functions run smoothly at every phase. A team of progressive, world-class chefs designs menus according to individual tastes and budgets, including creative themed coffee breaks.

PORTMAN

RITZ-CARLTON SHANGHAI

1376, Nanjing Xi Lu

Shanghai, 200040, China

Tel: +86 21 6279 8888

Fax: +86 21 6279 8800

Website: www.ritzcarlton.com

HOTEL GROUP OF THE DECADE 1997-2005

WINNER: Ritz-Carlton

Among the grand hotels of the world, the Ritz-Carlton hotels and resorts are renowned for indulgent luxury. Sumptuous surroundings and legendary service await every guest that passes through our doors. Their award-winning hotels reflect the 100 years of tradition that stand behind them.

Headquartered in Chevy Chase, Maryland Ritz-Carlton has 57 hotels worldwide (35 city hotels and 23 resorts) in Bahrain, Canada, Cayman Islands, Chile, China, Egypt, Germany, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Jamaica, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Mexico, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Singapore, Spain, U.S. Virgin Islands, the United Arab Emirates and the United States.

They employ 28,000 people worldwide and have sales offices in Atlanta; Chicago; Dubai; Los Angeles; New York; Washington D.C.; Frankfurt; London; Tokyo; Hong Kong and Singapore

The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, L.L.C. was established in 1983 with the purchase of The Ritz-Carlton, Boston and the rights to the name "Ritz-Carlton." The management company has grown from one hotel to 54 hotels worldwide with plans for major expansion in Europe, Africa, Australia, Asia, the Middle East, North America and Latin America.

Luxury residential condominiums are located at Ritz-Carlton hotels and resorts. Added features include marble foyers, walk-in closets, custom kitchen cabinetry and the services of The Ritz-Carlton, including twice daily maid service, valet, 24-hour room service, access to extensive fitness facilities and services such as massages, facials and hairdressing. Locations include Washington, D.C.; New York; Boston; Sarasota, Coconut Grove and Key Biscayne; Grand Cayman; and Berlin.

RITZ-CARLTON--HEAD OFFICE

4445 Witlard Avenue, Suite 800

Chevy Chase, Maryland 20815

Tel: + 1 301 547-4700

Website: www.ritzcarlton.com

BEST & MOST CONSISTENT BUSINESS HOTEL IN ASIA 1997-2005

WINNER: Conrad, Hong Kong

The Conrad offers business and leisure travellers a superb location and a unique sense of style. Soaring 61 floors above Pacific Place it offers easy access to all major transportation, including Mass Transit Railway, Star Ferry, bus and tram services.

Conrad offers 513 guest rooms and suites. Each room offers breathtaking views of Victoria Peak and Hong Kong Harbour. Rooms feature satellite and cable television, marble bathrooms, deep soaking bath and separate shower. All rooms are equipped with high speed Internet access, CD players, dual line telephones with international direct dial, electronic safes, bathrobes, umbrellas, iron and ironing board, slippers and coffee-and-tea making facilities.

The Executive Floors on levels 57 through 61 offer exclusive check in, butler service and complimentary full breakfast, afternoon tea and evening cocktails. The Executive Lounge also offers a private meeting room with a panoramic view of the city's skyline. The hotel offers a full service Business Centre, state-of-the-art Health Club, heated outdoor pool and spa pool. It also has one of the city's largest pillar-free Grand Ballrooms complete with state-of-the-art technology and a dedicated floor of 11 meeting rooms.

The hotel's Business Centre also provides offices with computer work station and high speed Internet access, portable computer rental, mobile phone rental, translation and full secretarial service.

CONRAD HONG KONG

Pacific Place,

88 Queensway, Hong Kong

Tel.: (852) 2521 3838

Fax: (852) 2521 3888

Email: hongkonginfo@conradhotels.com

Website: www.conrad.com.hk

BEST BUSINESS HOTEL IN AUSTRALIA

WINNER: Park Hyatt, Sydney

Seated majestically in the dress circle to one of the world's most glittering harbours, Park Hyatt Sydney is located in the historic Rocks district, just five minutes from the central business, cultural and shopping districts of Sydney.

One of a select brand of Park Hyatt hotels known throughout the world for its exceptional design and elegant style, Park Hyatt Sydney opened in 1990, quickly earning a reputation as Australia's most luxurious hotel, welcoming royalty, heads of state, corporate leaders, celebrities and a host of local and international guests who chose to make this Sydney hotel home while staying in the city.

In 2004, the hotel completed its most significant undertaking since opening, with the appointment of newly designed hotel rooms. In line with the select brand of Park Hyatt's worldwide, the direction is an uncluttered timeless style with a strong local flavour honouring the hotel's superb position on Sydney Harbour.

It offers a sanctuary of privacy and refined unobtrusive service with most of the hotel's 158 guestrooms enjoying private balconies with views overlooking Sydney's spectacular harbour, Opera House and/or Harbour Bridge.

The hotel has an elegant spa, rooftop terrace and pool, a selection of six function areas with seating capacity for up to 150 as well as a hotel business centre featuring a separate boardroom for 12. Whether it be a rooftop wedding, conference, board meeting or product launch, the attention to detail and specialised service of the Park Hyatt Sydney's banqueting and catering staff will ensure that your event is an outstanding success and one that will be remembered by your guests.

Other Finalists: Crown Towers Melbourne, Four Seasons Hotel Sydney, Grand Hyatt Melbourne, Park Hyatt Melbourne, Shangrila Hotel Sydney, The Westin Melbourne, The Westin Sydney, W Hotel Sydney.

PARK HYATT SYDNEY

7 Hickson Road, The Rocks,

Sydney NSW 2000, Australia

Tel: +61 2 9241 1234

Fax: +61 2 9256 1555

E-mail: sydney@hyatt.com.au

Website: www.sydney.park.hyatt.com

BEST BUSINESS HOTEL IN CHINA

WINNER: Grand Hyatt, Shanghai

Grand Hyatt Shanghai is the 'highest hotel in the world', in the heart of Pudong, Shanghai's financial and business district. The hotel is just 50 minutes' drive from Pudong Airport (PIA) and 30 minutes from Hongqiao International Airport (HIA).

The most impressive of Shanghai hotels it has a 33-storey central atrium that...

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