Most Clicked AH&LA SmartBrief Stories

1. Starwood to continue expansion of luxury brands in North America

AH&LA SmartBrief | Jan 26, 2015

Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide will keep expanding its upper upscale and luxury brands in North America in an attempt to meet the growing demand for new-build hotels prompted by the continued economic recovery and increased funding potential, said Allison Reid, Starwood's senior vice president of North America development. Luxury Travel Advisor (01/23)

2. 4 hotel trends set to stand out in 2015

AH&LA SmartBrief | Jan 28, 2015

The top four trends that hotels are expected to capitalize on to increase bookings this year include mobile bookings; high-tech amenities such as check-in kiosks and keyless room entry; wellness-focused amenities; and services that cater to guests' pets. U.S. News & World Report (01/27)

3. Strategic pays $360 million for Montage Laguna Beach in Calif.

AH&LA SmartBrief | Jan 30, 2015

Strategic Hotels & Resorts has purchased the 250-room Montage Laguna Beach in Laguna Beach, Calif., for $360 million. As part of the deal, Strategic assumed a $150 million mortgage loan attached to the property. The hotel will remain under management by Montage Hotels & Resorts. (01/29)

4. NYC's super-luxury hotel scene is booming

AH&LA SmartBrief | Jan 29, 2015

Hotel industry experts say the number of super-luxury rooms in New York City with rates of $1,000 or more per night is at an all-time high. The Park Hyatt and the Baccarat Hotel are among the newcomers catering to this market. Crain's New York Business (01/27)

5. San Francisco hotel sold to LaSalle Hotel Properties for $350M

AH&LA SmartBrief | Jan 27, 2015

LaSalle Hotel Properties has paid $350 million to acquire the 681-room Westin Market Street hotel in San Francisco. The hotel, which was renamed Park Central San Francisco, is the company's seventh property in the city. American City Business Journals (01/26)

6. Report: Hotels spent most on CapEx, repairs in 2008

AH&LA SmartBrief | Jan 29, 2015

Capital expenditures and repair and maintenance spending in the lodging industry peaked during 2008, accounting for 16% of hotels' yearly revenue, according to a study set to be released by the International Society of Hospitality Consultants and the Hospitality Asset Managers Association. Resort properties outspent all other hotel types from 2007 to 2012, while real estate investment trust owners spent more than non-REITs with 9.5% of revenue. (01/28)

7. Marriott to acquire Delta Hotels and Resorts

AH&LA SmartBrief | Jan 28, 2015

Marriott International is buying Canadian hotel firm Delta Hotels and Resorts for $135 million. Upon completing the deal, Marriott will add Delta's 38 hotels in more than 30 cities to its portfolio in Canada, bringing up its total footprint there to 27,000 rooms in more than 120 hotels. USA Today (01/27) Wall Street Journal (tiered subscription model), The (01/27)

8. Hyatt introduces Centric brand aimed at "modern explorers"

AH&LA SmartBrief | Jan 28, 2015

Hyatt Hotels unveiled its new full-service lifestyle brand, Hyatt Centric, with plans to open at least 15 hotels by this summer. Among Hyatt Centric's amenities are free Wi-Fi access, an open-concept lounge, a fitness studio and an open area for work and socialization. The concept is designed to appeal to a multigenerational group of experience-focused travelers, or "modern explorers," according to a news release. (01/27)

9. Column: Bundling buffet offerings creates win-win situation

AH&LA SmartBrief | Jan 30, 2015

Hotels that offer buffet-style food-and-beverage outlets should consider bundling the products to add value for consumers and themselves, writes S Lakshmi Narasimhan, founder of Ignite Insight. "Contribution margins are enhanced, service employees can be reduced with a buffet spread laid out and revenues are boosted. Moreover, beverage costs are much lower than food costs and tend to boost profitability through contribution margin," Narasimhan writes. 4Hoteliers (01/28)

10. ALIS attendees express confidence in industry's future

AH&LA SmartBrief | Jan 28, 2015

Optimism reigned at the Americas Lodging Investment Summit this week in Los Angeles as data from industry analysts backed up delegates' outlooks of continued growth for the lodging industry. Among the positive data presented were STR's predicted 6.4% increase in revenue per available room this year amid a 5.2% rate increase. Industry leaders tempered the positivity by enumerating the challenges that lie ahead, with AH&LA President and CEO Katherine Lugar citing efforts to raise the minimum wage in some areas and the National Labor Relations Board's ruling on McDonald's among the issues to monitor. (01/27) Hotel Management online (01/27)

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