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October 1, 2012News for hotel and lodging professionals

  Front Desk 
  • Accor plans $1.5B expansion in Brazil
    Accor is undertaking a four-year expansion strategy in Brazil that is designed to increase its portfolio there to 250. The effort is expected to cost $1.5 billion and produce about 25 hotel openings a year. Bloomberg (9/28) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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  Business Update 
  • Globalization will remain Rezidor's top priority, new CEO says
    Rezidor Hotel Group will continue to strive for globalization and greater consumer loyalty as it executes its growth strategy in international markets, says Wolfgang Neumann, the company's newly appointed CEO. "Fighting the loyalty battle to me is a critical one. It's all about globalizing the brand and communicating with the customers across the globe," Neumann said. (9/28) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Inland American Lodging Group is acquiring boutique hotels
    Three boutique hotels under Marriott's Autograph Collection are being acquired by Inland American Lodging Group. The purchase of the Bohemian Hotel Savannah Riverfront in Savannah, Ga., has already been finalized. Inland says it expects to complete the transactions for the Grand Bohemian Hotel Orlando in Florida by December and for the Bohemian Hotel Celebration, also in Florida, by January. American City Business Journals/Chicago (9/28) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Resorts CEO: Atlantic City should lift hotel room rates
    Resorts Casino Hotel CEO Gary Van Hettinga said Atlantic City casino hotels should raise room rates and invest in nongaming attractions to help improve business. "The successful casinos are going to have to figure out how to make profits beyond the casino floor. I just think we have so much to offer here compared to the other markets," Van Hettinga said. He said Resorts, which has been reducing its promotional spending, looks to increase its room rates as part of a new business plan. The Press of Atlantic City (N.J.) (9/28) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
  Market Trends 
  • Recovery in U.S. resort segment is ramping up, STR says
    U.S. resort markets are steadily returning to peak performance, STR reports. The segment saw a 6.1% growth in revenue per available room, a 2.7% rise in occupancy and a 3.3% increase in average daily rate in August year to date, STR says. STR attributes the improvement in average daily rate to solid increases in transient demand and minimal supply growth. (9/28) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Hyatt hotel in NYC invites community to join the club
    The Hyatt 48 Lex in midtown Manhattan has opened its new Lex Club, selling annual memberships for $500 a year. The club offers food through room service, a private concierge and access to the fitness club. For a $450 fee, members can also access meeting and boardrooms. "We pride ourselves on being a unique and fresh concept," said Hyatt 48 Lex's Deirdre Yack. Travel Weekly (9/27) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Ski resorts expect pent-up demand to boost business this year
    A number of ski resorts have launched attractive packages to bring in more business for the coming ski season even as skiers are reportedly booking rooms early because of pent-up demand, this feature says. Bad ski conditions last season led many skiers to cancel plans, resort operators said. "People who decided not to come last year really missed skiing. They're eager to get their reservations on the books and start planning," said Linda Warren, chief marketing officer of Talisker, the parent company of Canyons Resort in Utah. USA TODAY/Hotel Check-in blog (9/30) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
  Hot Topics 

Top five news stories selected by AH&LA SmartBrief readers in the past week.

  • Results based on number of times each story was clicked by readers.
  Best Practices 
  • Column: Offering solutions gives more weight to a marketing pitch
    Hoteliers can make their marketing efforts more effective by offering solutions to common traveler problems instead of simply declaring their property's value proposition, writes Tom Costello, principal of Groups International. "If you want to attract and engage prospective customers and lead them down the sales funnel, you need to focus on them and their problems. The more your message helps to solve your customers problems, the more apt they are to respond to your message and move that much closer to a conversion," Costello writes. 4Hoteliers (9/27) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Rotate Black gets approval to build Gulfport, Miss., casino
    The Gulfport, Miss., Planning Commission gave casino company Rotate Black the final major approval it needed Thursday for its planned casino in Gulfport, Miss. Rotate Black President Dual Cooper said long-term plans for the Hemingway Resort and Casino resort include construction of additional hotel rooms and a parking garage. "We're going to probably take the casino up another 60 percent. Add a couple of restaurants. Really make it larger and better," Cooper said. WLOX-TV (Biloxi, Miss.) (9/28) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • 21C Museum Hotels buys building in Louisville, Ky., for redevelopment
    Plans for a boutique hotel and art museum in Louisville, Ky., moved forward with 21C Museum Hotels' acquisition of the historic First National Building. The hotel group has secured approval for its tax increment financing plan from the city's Planning Commission to aid its $38 million project, which will include an 80-room hotel, a restaurant, meeting rooms and an art museum. Lexington Herald-Leader (Ky.) (9/28) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
  AH&LA News 
  • AH&LA partners with groups assisting veterans
    AH&LA is working with two groups that share a similar mission -- hiring veterans. America Wants You brings together the private sector and corporate America to find job opportunities for men and women who have served in the U.S. military. First lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden's Joining Forces is a comprehensive national initiative to mobilize all sectors to give service members and their families the opportunities and support they have earned around employment, education and wellness. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • American Express and AH&LA give hospitality credit
    Now on AH&LA's site, you'll find an array of business services from American Express to help you better understand and connect with your guests. Resources include Business Insights, which analyzes consumer spending trends and Loyalty Edge, which provides tools to optimize loyalty programs, as well as small business resources and gift card options. Visit to learn more. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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