Lyon-based company Huttopia is opening a village near Shanghai

Tout Lyon

Almost 10 years after taking its first steps in China, Huttopia opened a 16-hectare bamboo heartland village in early October. Located in Zhejiang province, 2h30 from Shanghai and 40 minutes from Hangzhou, this site has a hundred tents, huts and log cabins. “This is the standard Huttopia village model”justifies Philippe Bossanne, who specifies that the company designed and manages the site without investing in it.

To make Deqing Village a reality, Huttopia partnered with Chinese outdoor equipment manufacturer Hengfeng through a joint venture. Previous experiments were conducted with public partners.

Huttopia targets new villages internationally

Exploiting the flourishing of individual tourism in China and due to the natural envy of the townspeople, the place was full during the first week with 100% local customers, including 80% Chinese and 20% expats. “This exemplary place is a real exhibition space to show our knowledge and the execution of new projects in China. For now, we do not plan to open to other Asian countries”says the founder and chairman of the supervisory board of Huttopia, which continues to expand to other continents.

A unique camping experience? What a Huttopia!

In North America, the company Saint-Genis-les-Ollieres operates five villages, with two locations under construction in California and Florida. “Opening is planned for the summer and fall of 2023. We are working on other projects in Canada and the United States”shared by Philippe Bossanne.

In Europe, the new location will be operational next year in Nazareth, Portugal, followed by 2024 in Santiago de Compostela, Spain. “We are preparing projects in the Middle Atlas in Morocco and the Dominican Republic in partnership with national parks”.

Revenues up 38%

Under the Huttopia, CityKamp and OnlyCamp brands, the family business, which employs between 700 and 1,600 people depending on the season, had 90 locations in seven countries this year. It plans to offer 115 locations in 2023.

“Our turnover increased by 38% in the financial year 2022 to 95 million euros. Covid has accelerated the movements in which we have been investing for 20 years, such as the return to nature and simplicity”analyzed by Philippe Bossanne.

This success in outdoor camping is also reflected in the industrial aspect as Hekipia, a manufacturer of mountain houses based in Beaujolaisincreased turnover from 21 to 32 million euros.

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