Japanese luxury inn and hotel booking site Relux was launched in February 2013 in beta followed by a switch to an official edition in April of the same year. Members had to obtain qualification by Relux to start booking inns using the site, but the regulation was subsequently abolished in late 2013. Loco Partners, the company behind the service, announced on Friday that it has surpassed 100,000 registered members since its launch almost two years ago.
What’s unique about Relux is that their screening committee chose Japanese hotels or inns from all across the country, aiming to give users a satisfaction-guaranteed staying experience. In addition to listing high-end Japanese inns, Relux provides member-only limited packages in association with participating hotels and inns.
As their user base grew, booking inquiries from outside Japan have also increased. While many people from Hong Kong, China, and Singapore now use Relux for booking their stays, some of them pay even millions yen a night for a luxury accommodation package. Based on these responses from users, Relux has enhanced and improved their services to better fit foreign visitors to Japan. As part of these efforts, they launched the global edition of its booking site last September, followed by launching a multilingual concierge service and an English version of their Facebook fan page.
Since Loco Partners has been receiving many inquiries, in particular from China, they are planning to launch a local office in China in March to explore local partners, aimed atxbetter serving Chinese user needs. Towards the Chinese new year holiday later this month, the company started a time-limited promotional campaign on Friday, offering a complimentary travel voucher worth 10,000 yen to foreigners who sign up fully for a Relux membership, until 11:59pm of 18th February (Thursday), Japan Time.
The Japan National Tourism Organization announced that more than 13.41 million foreign visitors have visited Japan through last year, which was a 29.4% increase from the previous year, the highest ever figure. Since typical foreign visitors to Japan must rely on conventional online booking sites like TripAdvisor or Hotels.com due to language barrier, it is only natural that Relux is so attractive for them because of its highly-selected curation of Japanese hotels and inns.
Translated by Masaru Ikeda
Edited by “Tex” Pomeroy