Marriott is bringing to Miami its M Club, a lounge mainly for members in the elite tiers of its loyalty program. It's also rolling out full-service resorts under its Courtyard brand. Plus, other highlights from hotel news this week.
Daily Lodging Report
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Here are some excerpts from Daily Lodging Report from the past week. If you’re not a subscriber, you should be. Get news on hotel deals, development, stocks, and career moves. Sign up here, now.
Sunday, March 19
JP Morgan gave some takeaways from their recent JP Morgan Gaming and Lodging Forum. Lodging demand remains consistent with any concern of deterioration stemming from headline economic risk not yet manifesting in fundamentals. JPM said the leisure segment remains resilient while group continues its recovery momentum. They noted that both Hyatt and Wyndham highlighted exposures to sub-segments less tiled to cyclical demand, indicating some cushion amid the challenged economic backdrop. Hotel management teams expect Chinese and Japanese consumers will provide a boost to occupancy in U.S. urban and coastal markets.
Baird reported on something we touched on recently, insider buying at lodging companies. As we pointed out, Pebblebrook Hotel Trust is seeing the most activity by their CEO, recently spending $1.3 million to buy 90,000 shares. Chatham Lodging Trust’s CEO just bought 10,000 shares and their COO bought, too. Baird also said Apple Hospitality saw a director buy 1,000 shares. Insiders selling is a normal occurrence with Playa Hotels once again in the lead with the usual selling by one director (140,000 shares this time) and two officers selling a total of 47,000 shares.
According to a new report, “How Travel Managers Will Succeed in 2023”, from the Global Business Travel Association and Spotnana, a majority of the U.S. corporate travel buyers expect their company’s business travel to ramp up and return to pre-pandemic levels by the end of 2023. Only one in five travel managers say their companies have begun to limit business travel. Some key highlights from the report include: When asked which tasks they dedicate more time to now compared to before the pandemic, travel managers most frequently cited traveler communications / answering questions and overseeing their travel management company relationship.
Skift Take: Trends in insider buying and selling can provide clues to future company prospects.
Monday, March 20
Red Roof will open 50 properties, new builds and conversions, in 2023, representing 60% year-on-year growth. New Red Roof PLUS+ properties will be in cities including Brooklyn, NY; Jamaica, NY; Virginia Beach, VA; San Antonio, TX; and Belleville, MI. As the Red Roof brand draws closer to 700 properties systemwide, the company is also launching a new dual-branded prototype, offering franchisees an additional Red Roof option: Red Roof Inn and HomeTowne Studios, on the same property, with 150 rooms, a centralized reservation system, and shared labor.
AD1 Global Hotels LLC is offering a 1,210-key portfolio of seven Florida hotels through a Section 363 Sale. The properties include new and recently-constructed hotels currently flagged with Marriott, Hilton, Hyatt, and IHG brands and located in Orlando, Melbourne, West Palm Beach, and Daytona Beach. RobertDouglas and Berkadia are co-advising AD1 Global on the transaction. The Orlando and Melbourne properties will be auctioned on May 9th, Palm Beach on July 12th, and Daytona on August 4th.
Wyndham Hotels & Resorts announced strong growth in Asia Pacific as it closed out 2022, diversifying its offerings for guests and owners across the region. Highlights included 169 new hotel signings, 132 new hotel openings and the addition of more than 18,000 new rooms, resulting in 5% net room growth across Southeast Asia and 10% net room growth across its direct franchise and managed properties in Greater China.
The Economic Times said many more hotels would be signed in India this year compared to last year, with some chains even considering doubling their signing numbers from last year. Consulting company Hotelivate expects a 15-20 percent growth in new hotel signings compared to 2022. It’s doing nearly double the number it had signed in 2019. Lemon Tree Hotels sees conversion growth as “there are more than 30 lakh rooms in India, of which only 1.60 lakh rooms are branded.” Radisson Hotel Group told Economic Times they signed 12 hotels across brands last year. More examples and data at Economic Times.
Skift Take: Red Roof Inn’s stable growth as an economy brand in the U.S. may prompt suitors to make inquiries of parent company Westmont Hospitality Group, managed by Majid Mangalji.
Tuesday, March 21
Aimbridge Hospitality has acquired the management arm of Terrapin Hospitality, with 71 hotels located in 21 states. This aggregates to over 8,100 keys transitioning to Aimbridge management within its dedicated Select Service operating division. The portfolio Aimbridge manages on behalf of hotel investors and owners Waramaug Hospitality and Terrapin Investments increased to 42 hotels from 12 prior to the transaction.
Wyndham Hotels & Resorts announced the continued expansion of its innovative ECHO Suites Extended Stay by Wyndham brand, which in just one year, now has more than 200 hotels in its development pipeline. The first ECHO Suites hotel is on track to open by the end of this year, with additional hotels following in 2024.
Extended Stay America entered into an agreement with BASK Development for eight new Extended Stay America Premier Suites located throughout major markets in Florida. Extended Stay America currently has 36 Extended Stay America Premier Suites open and operating throughout the United States. BASK Development is a real estate development and investment company located in Chicago, IL BASK has 30 hotels under management and six under construction.
Construction work on Dream Las Vegas has fully stopped, as the developers’ stalled financing plans left them owing tens of millions of dollars for the hotel-casino project. According to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, Shopoff Realty Investments owes approximately $25 million to $30 million for work on the resort. Dream is slated to cost $550 million to $575 million. It was recently acquired by Hyatt.
A development team led by Redbrick filed plans with Washington, D.C.’s Historic Preservation Office for a five-building development at the St. Elizabeth’s campus, reported UrbanTurf. Dubbed Sycamore and Oak, the project will include a 178,000-square-foot office building, a hotel, and residential buildings with upwards of 300 units.
Skift Take: Aimbridge, the largest hotel property management company, just keeps getting bigger. Meanwhile, the D.C. project to place a hotel alongside residential, commercial, and government agency buildings on a hill overlooking the city has the potential to become the latest booming district in the nation’s capital.
Wednesday, March 22
The Miami Marriott Biscayne Bay said it had finished a multi-million dollar renovation project that included adding downtown Miami’s first M Club, the brand’s signature lounge. Miami’s first M Club, is a brand signature exclusive lounge, a place to retreat, recharge and refocus, available to Marriott Bonvoy Platinum, Titanium and Ambassador members as well as available for guests interested in upgrading their stay. The Miami, FL, hotel now includes 607 remodeled guest rooms and suites, many with a private balcony, all offering views of Biscayne Bay and the surrounding cityscape. The property has a reimagined lobby, a one-stop convenience store, and an expansive, two-tiered 18,000-square-foot pool deck. The outdoor space will be available as early as Summer 2023. The hotel will continue to roll out enhanced features, including a large grassed lounge area, private cabanas, and a pool bar with a curated selection of tequilas and poolside dishes.
Shaner Hotels announced the completed conversion of the 124-room Courtyard by Marriott Marathon Florida Keys to the Courtyard Faro Blanco Resort. The newly converted property is owned by Prime Group and operated by Shaner and marks the first Courtyard Resort in the US from Marriott. The hotel plans to add cabanas and additional lighting to the pool deck with more activities and on-site experiences for guests. The full-service resort includes an infinity pool, marina view pool, outdoor whirlpool, fitness center, private cabanas, firepits, family game lawn, private dock and private sunning beach. The resort provides 14,000 square feet of flexible indoor and outdoor venue space and dining options.
The U.S. Federal Reserve Board raised interest rates by a quarter of a point and the financial markets rallied. Then Fed Chief Jerome Powell held his press conference and the DJIA ended the day down 530 points, Nasdaq was down 190, the S&P 500 fell 66 points but the 10-year treasury yield was down .11 to 3.50%. We can’t tell if the markets genuinely hate Powell or if the guy should just have a stand-in for his press conferences.
Compass Point cut its rating on Sunstone Hotels to Sell from Neutral, lowering their price target to $9 from $12. Host Hotels was cut to Neutral from Buy with the PT going down to $18 from $25. They also cut their rating on Apple Hospitality to Neutral from Buy, cutting their PT to $17 from $22.Redburn Partners lowered its rating on InterContinental Hotels Group to Sell. UBS Group downgraded shares of Melia Hotels International from a Buy rating to a Sell rating.
TUI’s global leisure hotel brand, TUI Blue, has added five hotels for this summer. They include the TUI Blue Victoria in Menorca in the Mediterranean and hotels in Hurghada, Egypt; Ayia Napa, Cyprus; Cala Bona, Majorca, and in Thailand. The 4+ star TUI Blue Victoria Menorca will open on May 1. Also expected to open that day will be the TUI Blue Crystal Bay in Hurghada in Egypt. Two more additional Mediterranean hotels, the TUI Blue Levante, Majorca and TUI Blue Atlantica Sungarden Park in Cyprus will open even earlier, ready for Easter guests. The TUI Blue The Passage will become the third TUI Blue hotel in Thailand when it opens in the northwest of Koh Samui island this summer. TUI is planning to add to its nearly 100 TUI Blue hotels.
Raman Sarin is finally about to open his four-star hotel in Lower Hutt in New Zealand, Stuff reported. Sarin has confirmed the hotel is taking bookings and is set for a soft opening on May 1. Sarin first announced the hotel in 2015, saying it would open in 2017. While Sarin would not confirm the final budget, it certainly was more than his initial cost projection of between $12 and $15 million.
Plans to develop and open the first all-inclusive Club Med in the U.S. at Snowbasin Resort in Utah will no longer proceed for 2025, reported KSL. Club Med said the agreement was mutual.
Sonder Holdings announced they expanded their business travel segment to include group bookings. Sonder also announced a new partnership with HelmsBriscoe, considered the global leader in meetings procurement and site selection. SOND said they had $70 million in booked corporate sales in 2022, five times more than in 2021.
Skift Take: You can learn more about TUI’s plans for the TUI Blue brand and for hotels and resorts in general next week at Skift’s Future of Lodging Event in London.
Thursday, March 23
City Developments Ltd is acquiring an 87.9% effective group interest in Australia’s Sofitel Brisbane Central hotel for US$120 million. Through CDL’s wholly-owned Millennium & Copthorne Hotels, and in a 50/50 joint venture with its New Zealand listed subsidiary, M&C New Zealand, the group will acquire the hotel from Brookfield Asset Management. The hotel will continue to be managed by Accor Group under its Sofitel brand.
Sabre said after sifting through its extensive shopping and booking data to examine the impact of the reopening through February 9, 2023, on tourism in China and globally, it has found strong demand among Chinese travelers for trips despite high airfares, with fares peaking at more than 2x in January and 1.5x in February when compared to pre-pandemic prices. As of February 9, Japan, Thailand and Korea are the top three destinations for Chinese outbound travel so far in 2023. Bookings for the UK, Thailand and Philippines have bounced back the fastest versus bookings made in the same period in 2019. Indonesia lost its spot in the top 10 to the Philippines. Sabre’s bookings show the largest sources of inbound travel for China so far in 2023 are Taiwan, the US, Thailand, Korea, the UK and Canada.
Marriott International announced the milestone opening of its 1,000th hotel in Asia Pacific, signaling its continued confidence in the long-term growth potential of the region. The company entered the region nearly 50 years ago and has steadily increased its Asia Pacific footprint. The 1000th property is the Ritz-Carlton Melbourne, the second Ritz-Carlton in Australia. On the western side of Melbourne’s central business district, the hotel has 257 guestrooms, a Sky Lobby Reception on Floor 80, three culinary venues, the Ritz-Carlton Spa, over 2,500 square meters of event space and more. The rooms include The Ritz-Carlton Suite, one of the city’s largest, spanning the length of the building. There are Club Level suites giving access to the signature Ritz-Carlton Club. After this 1,000th hotel, Marriott anticipates adding 100 hotels, roughly two a week, in Asia Pacific in 2023
Skift Take: Sabre is a global distribution system that helps to process a significant share of all airline tickets worldwide. It also sells a central reservation engine and other tools to hotels, giving it insight into hotel booking patterns. So its data on China’s outbound travel recovery is worth watching.