First Free Story (1 of 3)

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Throughout the week we post dozens of original stories, connecting the dots across the travel industry, and every weekend we sum it all up. This weekend roundup examines hospitality.

For all of our weekend roundups, go here.

>>Barr is touting his experience in China and his company’s long presence there as an advantage in understanding global consumer trends. But is that enough to raise the company’s cool factor in western markets? Video: IHG CEO on Where He’ll Break New Ground

>>When everyone else in hospitality is going asset light or turning to soft brands, Study Hotels is content to do its own thing and at its own pace: Study Hotels Founder on Why True Independence Matters More Than Ever

>>Brand proliferation continues, but we wonder: Will there be a point where there are simply just too many hotel brands out there? Or have we already reached it? Jumeirah Hotels Is Launching a New Lifestyle Brand in Early 2018

>>Marriott recognizes that business travelers want more than just fast Wi-Fi, convenient locations, and flexible cancellation policies. CEO Arne Sorenson is right to be considering the kind of emotional experience the hotel company is delivering to road warriors: Marriott CEO Sees the Line Between Leisure and Business Travel Blurring

>>As more affordable sharing economy, serviced apartment, and mid-scale hotel options have become popular with business travelers, high-end hotels have taken a hit: Travel Buyers Spend Less on Five-Star Hotels and More on Sharing Economy

>>Everyone agrees that service is key to the luxury experience. That means there’s a great deal of pressure on hiring managers to find the right talent. They should be looking for certain key psychographic factors that have consistently proven to be strong indicators of employee success: The Top Traits of Luxury Hospitality Employees

>>Luxury boutique hotels are suddenly sprouting up near the campuses of small liberal arts colleges. But most seem to be shunning franchise flags in favor of independence. We examine the reasons why: Luxury Boutique Hotels Become Part of the College Experience

>>Property managers are racing to sign up new rentals, and online agencies are racing to add new inventory. A new model that promises to guarantee incomes may lure more homeowners into the pool and extend the vacation rental tech boom: Rented’s New $125 Million Arm Aims to Give Steady Income to Vacation Home Owners

>>Again, do we really need another lifestyle brand? We’ll just have to see if this new brand, Khos, makes strides in reinventing hospitality for business travelers: Rosewood’s Newest Brand Is Aimed at Modern Business Travelers

>>Airbnb has gained in popularity on the claim that chain hotels offer a cookie-cutter experience. Hilton can fight back with technology that enables guests to personalize their experience: Hilton Unveils Plans for Its Smart Hotel Room Rollout in 2018

>>If hotels could out-innovate Airbnb, then Schrager is right that would certainly be part of the answer to the threat posed by the homesharing company. However, Airbnb is more nimble than many big chains. And they are unlikely to give up their legislative efforts anytime soon: Ian Schrager Calls Out Hotel Industry’s Airbnb Strategy as Misguided

Photo Credit: Burj Al Arab Jumeirah in Dubai is pictured. Jumeirah Group plans to launch a new brand for younger travelers early in 2018, its interim CEO said. Jumeirah Hotels & Resorts