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February 6, 2013News for hotel and lodging professionals

  Front Desk 
  • Franchisors sweeten rebranding deals with financial incentives
    More hotel owners are being enticed to reflag their properties as franchisors add financial incentives to their offers, this feature says. For instance, Wyndham Hotels and Resorts secured rights to rebrand eight Holiday Inn properties owned by FelCor Lodging Trust in a deal that includes a $21.5 million annual guarantee setting a minimum yearly net operating income for each hotel. "The guarantee level is above what the hotels ever did as Holiday Inns, so we're basically guaranteed a return on our investment -- the termination fees and the incremental capital -- that we just couldn't say no to," said Stephen Schafer, a vice president at FelCor. (2/5) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Business Update 
  • Choice CEO touts firm's diversified growth strategy
    Steve Joyce, president and CEO of Choice Hotels International, says his company has taken major steps with new hotel segments in its bid to elevate its brand image. "For forever Choice was the company that was a stopover when you were on the way to something else. Now we want to be the destination," Joyce said. Three large deals recently secured by Choice have granted it a stronger foothold in the budget and time-share segments as well as the European lodging market. (2/5) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Rockwood Capital acquires Aloft and Element Lexington in Mass.
    Rockwood Capital has completed its purchase of the Aloft Lexington and Element Lexington in Lexington, Mass., from Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide. The dual-hotel property, which includes 136 rooms under Aloft Lexington and 123 rooms by Element Lexington, was sold for $36 million. The new owner plans to retain the property's branding and place it under the management of Paramount Hotel Group. Travel Daily News International (Greece) (2/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
  Market Trends 
  • Relevant rewards are key to future of loyalty programs, hotel execs say
    During the Americas Lodging Investment Summit in Los Angeles last month, leaders of several major hotel chains participated in a round-table discussion to share their views on key industry issues. The executives noted consumers' rising demand for value-for-money, reliable Wi-Fi and relevant rewards for loyalty program membership. "I personally don't think the loyalty program in the hotel industry is going to go away any time soon. ... [I]f you consider that someone who signs up for a loyalty program, that person is demonstrating affinity to that brand," said David Kong, CEO of Best Western International. USA Today/Hotel Check-in blog (2/5) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Side-by-side hotel-branding trend emerges
    When AEG opened a 1,001-room property in Los Angeles in 2010 that houses a JW Marriott and a Ritz-Carlton, officials may not have known that dual-branded properties would be a growing trend. Other concepts are opening with two brands on one site. "It's not something that's going to go super-mainstream, but you can have economies of scale on the cost side and still charge very different rates," said Jan Freitag, a senior vice president at STR Global. "Maybe the company's chairman of the board stays at the Ritz and your VP-level guy stays at the JW." Travel Weekly (2/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Hotels offer creative modes of transport
    Hotels are offering more than typical shuttle service, giving guests the ability to get around on land and water. The Affinia Dumont and Affinia Shelburne in Manhattan provide free bikes, while Conrad New York and Conrad Miami offer bike rentals. The Peninsula property in Bangkok offers four riverboats and an open air taxi (known as a tuk tuk), while the Italy's Four Seasons Hotel Firenze rents Vespas and guests can rent Segways at Berlin's Circus Hotel. The New York Times (tiered subscription model) (2/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
  Best Practices 
  • Customer loyalty may not be dead
    Hotels need to focus on customer loyalty in the coming year, as results from the past few years did not show major growth. Mark A. Ratekin of Walker Information suggests getting an idea of how your company is viewed from customers' perspectives, and remembering that part of the stagnant loyalty numbers are simply a result of volatile markets and economic uncertainty. 4Hoteliers (2/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • NYC's Union Square prepares for 2 hotel openings
    The hotel capacity in New York's Union Square area is set to receive a boost of 300 new rooms with the scheduled opening of two hotels -- the Jade Hotel in March and the Hyatt Union Square in April. Damage caused by Hurricane Sandy last year forced the openings to be postponed. Crain's New York Business (2/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  AH&LA News 
  • Educational Institute celebrates 60th anniversary
    The American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute was founded in 1953 to provide working hospitality professionals with education and training. EI continues to meet the needs of the hospitality industry with online learning, 22 professional certification designations and targeted resources for high schools, colleges and workforce development agencies. Visit LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Connect with leading women in the industry‚Ä®
    AH&LA's Women in Lodging (WIL) Connect is a network of more than 2,000 nationwide that enables you to connect with top women in the industry and gain career momentum. Access the Who's Who database of expertise, participate in the mentor program and in national and state events and educational programs. Membership is free if you are employed at a member organization. Visit LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
Learn more about AH&LA ->Home  |  Join AH&LA  |  Educational Institute  |  Foundation

I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel."
--Maya Angelou,
American author and poet

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