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Hotel Industry News In Brief
Some current conversation starters…
A word seldom associated with Las Vegas casinos in recent years — profits — may be making a comeback…
Fourth quarter 2011 financial results are in, and, for the most part, they show broad improvements as tourists return to Las Vegas. Even the locals’ casino market, hit hard by high unemployment and foreclosures, appears to be stabilizing. Locals’ gaming giant Station Casinos LLC, now free from the shackles of bankruptcy, posted year-end numbers that are a good example of the improvements that appear to be continuing this year. Its net revenue in 2011 rose 5.7 percent to $1.18 billion — quite a turnaround from the 10.5 percent decline in revenue in 2010. Experts say the improving numbers will eventually be reflected in overall local economic improvements. “Gaming remains the primary engine that runs our local economy. When the gaming industry begins to show improvement, it can provide confidence to the business community at large. A healthy Las Vegas gaming industry can spark job creation in many sectors of our economy,” commercial real estate broker and hotel expert Mike Mixer said.
Russia’s inbound tourism industry was described as a ‘disaster’ during a debate at WTM Vision Conference – Moscow.
Speaking at the inaugural WTM Vision Conference – Moscow, KMP Group President Vladimir Kantorowich labelled the inbound Russian market as the ‘Cinderella of the Russian tourism industry’, claiming the government has done nothing to develop it. He told the conference’s 150 senior industry delegates: ‘The global travel and tourism industry is one of the five top cash generators in the world. Yet in Russia we are addicted to oil and gas. ‘In destinations where there is no oil and gas, inbound tourism can be the driver for the local economy.’ Kantorowich, who is also the vice president of tourist board association ANTOR, criticised the Russian government for failing to keep accurate inbound tourism statistics and making it difficult for tourists to visit the country. ‘Officials cheat and exaggerate tourism numbers to the extent that some regions apparently have more tourists than the whole country,’ he claimed. Kantorowich slammed Russia’s visa entry requirements which mean it is easier for business travellers to enter the country on tourist visas than business visas. His comments followed exclusive research from Euromonitor International which revealed Russia is set to see a 20% increase in inbound tourists over the next four years, fuelled by the hosting of major sporting events. Inbound visitors will increase to 28.3m in 2016, up from 23.7m in 2012, as Russia hosts sporting events including the 2013 World Athletic Championships and 2014 Winter Olympics.
The luxury playground of W Retreat & Spa — Maldives and the destination Maldives has won accolades of Lonely Planet reader’s choice awards.
In the results of the Lonely Planet Magazine India’s Travel Awards 2012 which was announced recently, W Retreat & Spa — Maldives was voted as the ‘Best Resort Hotel’ (International), while the destination Maldives was voted as the ‘Best Destination for Relaxation’ (International). This year, both Maldives and W Retreat & Spa – Maldives have been tipped for a number of international accolades; having been nominated in multiple categories at the World Travel Awards 2012 as well.
Key Appointments in the Industry
Congratulations to these new appointments…
King Hussein Bin Talal Convention Centre managed by Hilton has recently appointed Mr. Jan Heesbeen as a Director of Sales and Marketing. Heesbeen is an accomplished tourism and hospitality marketing and development professional with extensive experience in destination and product marketing and sales. With more than 13 years of Middle East experience, 6 of which in Jordan, Mr. Heesbeen has a keen understanding of the international opportunities and local challenges of marketing Jordan’s tourism abroad. He has led sales and marketing operations for key regional destinations in the Asia-Pacific and Middle East as well as country destinations as Jordan, Netherlands, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Bangkok Thailand.
Crestline Hotels & Resorts, Inc. today announced the appointment of Marianne Alberti to General Manager for the Homewood Suites by Hilton, Washington, DC. Ms. Alberti joins Crestline Hotels & Resorts from Modus Hotels where she was the General Manager at the Colony South Hotel, Clinton, MD. She brings more than 16 years of hospitality industry management and operations experience having also held management positions at the Washington Suites Georgetown, Washington, DC, and the Lincoln Suites Downtown, Washington, DC. She began her hospitality career as the Director of Human Resources for Hospitality Partners Hotels.
The Latest in Hotel Openings
Hôtel Le Bristol, Paris, unveiled the completion of Spa Le Bristol by La Prairie, two new signature suites and Epicure, the newly decorated three star Michelin restaurant formerly known as the Gastronomique. The launch heralds the completion of a three year restoration program that included the launch of a new wing in 2009, and addition of restaurant Le 114 Faubourg. The entire restoration program was designed by hotel owner Maja Oetker, in close collaboration with architect Pierre-Yves Rochon. Spa Le Bristol by La Prairie includes eight beauty treatment cabins, a Russian Wet Room with the first affusion shower in Paris, a Turkish bath for women only, a double VIP suite, a fitness center, children’s area and a hairdressing salon. The spa is also working with five other brands including Organic Pharmacy, Russie Blanche, Maison D’Largon, Les Thermes Marins de Saint Malo and By Terry. The spa, set over three floors of the hotel, is bathed in natural light and opens out onto an indoor garden.
The Joule, Dallas entered Phase II of a two-year-long $78 million renovation and expansion, expected to be complete by Fall 2012. The transformation of The Joule is led by interior designer Adam D. Tihany. Forrest Perkins, the Architect of Record, is coordinating the design and construction of the project consisting of multiple historic buildings and new building construction, as well as the existing Joule hotel. The design team also includes Architexas, the historic preservation architect. The Joule will expand its hotel through three historic buildings. One, constructed in 1913 in a classical revival style, was originally known as the Scholar Building. The second was originally a Salvation Army constructed in 1911. Lastly, the project includes Dallas' neo-gothic National Bank building in which the Joule currently resides. The Joule's room collection will add 29 new guest suites, one single-story penthouse and two three-story penthouses. Guestrooms designed by Tihany will feature white oak furnishings, complimented by sapphire mohair seating and contrasting gold accents. Suites will take on a red scheme with deep red and brown leather lounge chairs complemented with bright yellow details.
Bethesda-based Pebblebrook Hotel Trust has acquired its third hotel in San Francisco, paying $30 million for the Hotel Milano. The company says it will invest as much as $10 million to renovate and reposition the hotel as an upper-end luxury property and will rename the property once complete. Viceroy Hotel Group will manage the property for Pebblebrook. The 108-room Hotel Milano is located in downtown San Francisco’s South of Market and Convention Center submarket. Pebblebrook says the San Francisco hotel ma
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