Skift Take

What was once one of the most well-known hotel brands in the U.S. isn't any longer. The redesign is an attempt to reintroduce Howard Johnson to a new set of design-conscious travelers that have few preconceived perceptions of the brand.

The quintessential American hotel brand Howard Johnson is getting a brand new look.

Plans for Howard Johnson’s multi-year revitalization were unveiled Wednesday at Wyndham Hotel Group’s 2013 Global Conference in Las Vegas.

Everything from property design to amenities and services will be spruced for the 21st century.

The company describes the new design as “clean, fresh, fun and timeless” and “a playful nod to its past.” The brand’s iconic color orange accents all aspects of the new design.

Test properties with new Howard Johnson look are set to appear in the U.S. in early 2014. Locations have not yet been announced, but brand executives expect that franchises will be able to join the new Howard Johnson as soon as 2015.

Howard Johnson tiers including Howard Johnson Inn, Howard Johnson Express Inn and Howard Johnson Plaza will be phased out in the multi-year transition.

When HoJo Still Had Its MoJo

The hotel arm of Howard Johnson launched in 1954 in Savannah, Georgia.

The brand, one of the most well-known budget family-friendly hotels in the U.S., reached its peak in the 1970s with over 500 hotels in 42 states and Canada. Many other hotels would go on to replicate the model it created.

Click through the slideshow above to compare today’s Howard Johnson to the brand’s new look.

Have a confidential tip for Skift? Get in touch

Tags: branding, budget, wyndham

Photo credit: Howard Johnson's new lobby design is a mix of modern and retro furniture. The brights playful colors and fixtures are a 180 degree design change for the brand. Howard Johnson / Howard Johnson

Up Next

Loading next stories