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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.