CHECK OUT! – latest hotel highlights from across the globe

CTC – Corporate Travel Community brings you the second of this week’s round up of some of the latest accommodation news from across the globe.

  • Four Seasons adds a room with a view as it debuts second San Francisco property
  • Hyatt adds its first property in Sweden as Hotell Reisen joins its Unbound Collection
  • Holiday Inn Express opens its first airport hotel in Australia
  • Data metrics – latest performance insights from STR
  • News briefs – bitesize updates of latest industry news and developments

Four Seasons adds a room with a view as it debuts second San Francisco property

The Four Seasons Hotel San Francisco at Embarcadero occupies the top 11 floors of the 48-storey 345 California Center building on Sansome and California Streets, located twenty minutes from San Francisco International airport. The former Loews Regency San Francisco has undergone renovations to deliver a 155 room and suite property that offers all guests panoramic views of such landmarks as the Golden Gate Bridge, the Transamerica Pyramid, Alcatraz Island, the Bay Bridge and San Francisco Bay. This hotel with a view also offers another perspective with most floors featuring a Sky Bridge with floor-to-ceiling windows on both sides. The property, located in San Francisco’s financial district, is Four Seasons second in the city, and guests are just steps – or a cable car ride – from major international businesses, Michelin-starred restaurants, luxury shopping in Union Square, walkable neighbourhoods such as North Beach and Chinatown, and the Embarcadero waterfront. Just 20 minutes from San Francisco International Airport, the new hotel is also a few blocks from the city’s original Four Seasons on Market Street in the SoMa district, known for its world-class museums.


Hyatt adds its first property in Sweden as Hotell Reisen joins its Unbound Collection

Hyatt Hotels Corporation has confirmed an affiliate has entered into a franchise agreement with First Hotel Reisen to open the first Hyatt property in Sweden. The existing Hotell Reisen is currently undergoing extensive refurbishment and will be available on Hyatt’s booking system on an unbranded basis as of 01-Dec-2020 with plans to join The Unbound Collection by Hyatt brand in early 2021. In the Nordics, the hotel will join the planned Grand Hansa Hotel in Helsinki, Finland as part of The Unbound Collection by Hyatt and Hyatt Centric Reykjavík in Reykjavik, Iceland. Located in the heart of Stockholm’s old town directly on the waterfront and on Skeppsbron, Hotell Reisen is rich in history, dating back to the 17th century. The name Reisen originates from a 1750s coffee house run by a Dutchman, Frederik Reiss. As the coffee house was a popular meeting space for merchants and travellers from all over the world, Frederik Reiss’s daughter soon started to rent rooms in the early 19th century. Ever since, the building has been in use as a hotel and today is a celebration of the vibrant and rich history of Sweden’s capital.


Holiday Inn Express opens its first airport hotel in Australia

InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) has confirmed the opening of its Holiday Inn Express airport hotel in Australia as it builds on its partnership with Pro-invest Group. The new-build Holiday Inn Express Sydney Airport is located on the doorstep of Sydney’s domestic airport terminal and minutes away from the international terminal, making it an ideal home to welcome the increasing number of Trans-Tasman and domestic arrivals, as travellers start to step out and explore as regional and national border restrictions are lifted. The 247-room, 8-storey hotel is inspired by the jet-setting ambiance of the local surrounds, featuring aeronautically-themed motifs throughout the hotel. Starting at the lobby entrance, two large vintage propellers are displayed, followed by wayfinding signage in the guest lifts as a nod to those found around the airport terminal. The gym and meeting room walls are reminiscent of runways, and the hotel has its own ‘business lounge’ inspired by the classic airport concept. The airport motifs continue throughout the hotel guestrooms, with bathroom shower screens printed with airport arrival and departure signage. The Holiday Inn Express Sydney Airport is the seventh Holiday Inn Express hotel opened by Pro-invest Group, since 2016, following the launch of Sydney Macquarie Park, Brisbane, Adelaide, Newcastle and Melbourne Southbank hotels in Australia, and Queenstown in New Zealand.


Data metrics – latest performance insights from STR

  • In Brazil the three key performance metrics in Sep-2020 reached their highest absolute level since Mar-2020. In comparison with Sep-2019, occupancy was down -57.5% to 26.1%, ADR fell -17.1% to BRL243.11 and RevPAR declined -64.7% to BRL63.34.
  • In Colombia each of the three key performance metrics hit their highest level since Mar-2020 in Sep-2020. Showing the magnitude of the pandemic impact, Colombia had reported five consecutive months of single-digit occupancy prior to then. In comparison with Sep-2019, occupancy was down -79.3% to 13.0%, ADR fell -23.0% to COP202,815.26 and RevPAR declined -84.0% to COP26,291.91.
  • In Ireland each of the three key performance metrics in Sep-2020 were down from Aug-2020 but came in higher than most of the other pandemic-affected months. In comparison with Sep-2019, occupancy was down -58.4% to 27.0%, ADR fell -29.5% to EUR102.59 and RevPAR declined -70.7% to EUR38.00.
  • In Poland each of the three key performance metrics were down in Sep-2020 from levels seen the prior month with ADR the lowest since May-2020. In comparison with Sep-2019, occupancy was down -52.4% to 37.7%, ADR fell -22.2% to PLN257.34 and RevPAR declined -63.0% to PLN97.02.
  • In Saudi Arabia the key performance metrics slipped slightly lower than Aug-2020 in Sep-2020 as the previous month was boosted by summer staycations and domestic demand following Eid al-Adha. In comparison with Sep-2019, occupancy was down -32.5% to 34.4%, ADR slipped -12.7% to SAR508.80 and RevPAR declined -41.0% to SAR174.78.
  • In South Africa each of the three key performance metrics in Sep-2020 were the highest for any month since Mar-2020. In comparison with Sep-2019, occupancy was down -59.6% to 27.4%, ADR declined -17.5% to ZAR982.48 and RevPAR fell 66.7% to ZAR268.75.

News briefs – bitesize updates of latest industry news and developments

  • Accor and BNP Paribas have concluded a pan-European partnership to launch a co-branded payment card. Members of the ALL-Accor Live Limitless lifestyle loyalty programme who subscribe to the card will be able to use it for all their day-to-day purchases. The card has three different tiers: ALL – VISA Pulse (aimed at Millennials), ALL-VISA Explorer (for clients who travel extensively for work or leisure) and ALL-VISA Ultimate (for super-premium clients).
  • Arora Group announced plans to offer COVID-19 testing at its Sofitel hotel at London Heathrow Airport terminal 5. Guests will be able to book a package consisting of an overnight stay and a self administered saliva based PCR COVID-19 test kit provided by HALO. The testing will also be rolled out to the group’s other hotels shortly.
  • The new Daxton Hotel will become the “poshest property” in the Aparium Hotel Group when it opens its doors in Birmingham, Michigan in Feb-2021, located just 30 minutes north of Detroit. The 151-room hotel aims to bring a modern vision of Birmingham luxury incorporating fine art, wellness, dining, and retail. Located on the city’s iconic Woodward Avenue, it will feature a minimalist-luxe design with close to 400 pieces of cutting-edge art curated by world-renowned Saatchi Art, including at least two custom pieces of artwork in each guestroom.
  • Hotel Internet Services (HIS) has helped to significantly enhance the quality and speed of guest Wi-Fi services at two Radisson properties in Albany, Georgia with the deployment of its internet service solutions. Both the Country Inn & Suites by Radisson, Albany, and Park Inn by Radisson, Albany, previously experienced issues related to slow internet speeds and dropped connections that had been leading to a considerable reduction in guest satisfaction.
  • Hotelbeds has announced the launch of The Green Hotels Programme, a turn-key solution to bring Hotelbeds and its partners to the green economy and accelerate the transition of the travel industry towards sustainability. Hotelbeds now has over 15,000 properties within its portfolio certified as sustainable and these will now be easily identifiable to its more than 60,000 travel trade client partners. As part of this initiative, Hotelbeds has also become a full member of the Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC), a global authority setting and managing standards for sustainable travel and tourism.
  • Life House has expanded into international markets having taken responsibility for the Cotelier Hotels portfolio of boutique hotels in in the heart of Playa Del Carmen, Mexico. The  four-star Calixta Hotel, Marquee Playa Hotel, and the Newport House Hotel will initially be operated under the company’s tech enabled hotel management platform, Life Hospitality, with the subsequent conversion to Life House branded hotels in the near future.
  • Meliá Hotels International has resumed work on an expansion plan which aims to double its presence in China within two years, from 5 to 10 hotels in operation. This is being kick-started by the opening of the Gran Meliá Chengdu and Gran Meliá Zhengzhou. The Chengdu property opened in late Sep-2020 and is located in the south of the city facing Jincheng Lake. It has 265 rooms and is spread across seven buildings that combine the traditional “Shu-Han” design of the city with modernist elegance and lush gardens.
  • The Mondrian brand from Accor and partner SBE will return to the London market after a two year hiatus after an agreement was reached for the existing hotel and members’ club The Curtain to be rebranded as the Mondrian Shoreditch London. The new 120-room property will open in spring 2021 following an update and restyling.
  • WebBeds has announced a new partnership with existing Health and Safety partner, Intertek Cristal Standards and all 30,000+ directly contracted hotel partners have been invited to participate in a programme providing guidance and assessment criteria to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. WebBeds has defined a list of minimum standards based on WHO recommendations and input from Intertek Cristal that will enable hotels to demonstrate to guests and the wider travel market that suitable controls have been implemented to prevent the spread of infection.