Brands look to customer exposure and high demand as a means of growth, but it’s their legacy and name familiarity from rural properties that lead to their urban success.
Raj Trivedi believes major urban markets like New York are the “final destination” for successful brands. It’s why La Quinta spent almost $50 million in downtown Chicago five years ago and is now actively pursuing partners and projects in Manhattan and other major markets.
“When a brand has become successful, has created distribution that is recognized by consumers first and developers in terms of a return on investment, that’s when you see growth in high-barrier-to-entry markets,” said the franchise and chief development officer for La Quinta Inns & Suites, which owns and franchises more than 800 hotels in North America.
It’s the same path brands like Holiday Inn Hotels & Resorts and Hampton Inn took, Trivedi said, and why a new wave of brands that began on the sides of roads and moved into the suburbs are now aggressively targeting markets like Manhattan.