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Hotel News In Brief
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Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group has announced the findings of the 2013 International Travel Trends Survey, conducted by Kelton among more than 1,000 Americans ages 18 and older January 2-8, 2013.
The survey found domestic leisure travel to be the most common reason for travel, with 55% of respondents having flown or taken a road trip somewhere within the United States during the past 12 months. Those who travelled domestically in 2012 took an average of four U.S. trips, and international travellers averaged two trips out of the country. The most popular international destinations for the last two years have been Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean, with 45% of respondents visiting these spots. Europe followed next, with 29%. When it comes to booking travel experiences, there is no stronger influence than the power of word of mouth, as 41% of survey participants who travelled for leisure in the last year noted that a trusted source’s description of a past vacation experience has the greatest impact on their decision to book similar arrangements. Social media outlets have a particular draw for Americans ages 18-34 when making travel decisions — 29% of respondents ages 18-34 are impacted by these digital influencers, compared to 10% of respondents ages 35 and older. Nearly a quarter (24%) of individuals ages 18-34 are impacted by a hotel’s packages, while only 12% of individuals ages 45 and older take note of the inclusive offerings. Among individuals ages 18-34, 22% are impacted by a discount or deal website, compared to 11% of individuals ages 35 and older.
International tourist arrivals grew by 4% in 2012 to reach 1.035 billion, according to the latest UNWTO World Tourism Barometer.
Emerging economies (+4.1%) regained the lead over advanced economies (+3.6%), with Asia and the Pacific showing the strongest results. Growth is expected to continue in 2013 only slightly below the 2012 level (+3% to +4%) and in line with UNWTO long term forecast. With an additional 39 million international tourists, up from 996 million in 2011, international tourist arrivals surpassed 1 billion (1.035 billion) for the first time in history in 2012. Demand held well throughout the year, with a stronger than expected fourth quarter. By region, Asia and the Pacific (+7%) was the best performer, while by sub-region South-East Asia, North Africa (both at +9%) and Central and Eastern Europe (+8%) topped the ranking.
Milestone Internet Marketing, Inc. today announced that its CEO, Anil Aggarwal, was honoured by The Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International (HSMAI) by naming him as one of the Top 25 Extraordinary Minds in Hospitality Sales and Marketing for 2012.
Milestone is a leading provider of digital marketing and social media solutions for the hospitality industry. The award recognizes the “best of the best” in the hospitality, travel and tourism industries. The 2012 “Top 25” recipients were judged by a panel of senior industry executives for their recent work based on the following criteria: creativity and innovation; cutting edge sales or marketing campaigns; triumph in challenging situations; and sales efforts that resulted in dramatic gains.
Key Appointments in the Industry
Congratulations to these new appointments…
Accor brand Sofitel has announced it will now be divided into four regions: Europe; the Americas; Middle East and Africa; and Asia Pacific. The reorganization splits the former Europe, Middle East and Africa region in two. Dominique Colliat is taking over responsibility for the Americas and will be based in New York. Colliat most recently served as senior vice president of operations for Sofitel Europe, Middle East and Africa. Emmanuel Caux is joining Sofitel to lead Europe. Caux most recently was managing director of the Hôtel Majestic in Cannes for the Lucien Barrière Group. Sami Nasser is now in charge of the Middle East and Africa region. Nasser previously was vice president and general manager of operations for Sofitel Middle East, Egypt and Indian Ocean. Markland Blaiklock continues to lead the Asia Pacific region.
Michel Rey is ending his 30-year tenure as Managing Director of the Baur au Lac with his elevation to the hotel's board, and Wilhelm Luxem has been appointed the new Managing Director of the renowned Swiss hotel. The Rey family, including Rey's father and predecessor, Georges Rey, has been dedicated to the tradition-rich Baur au Lac for nearly 60 years. Since taking over his father's position as Managing Director in the early 1980s, Rey has gracefully met the ever-changing needs of travelers, beginning a new chapter in the success and growth of the Baur au Lac. Together with Andrea Kracht, owner of the Baur au Lac, Rey has played a significant role in repositioning the hotel amid Europe's leading hotels. By overseeing an outstanding staff, he has maintained the hotel's service at a world-class level, resulting in two commendable tributes of the coveted Commitment to Quality Award as the "Best Hotel in Europe,"from the experts at the The Leading Hotels of the World. Wilhelm Luxem has extensive experience in the luxury hotel industry. His career path included the Schlosshotel Kronberg in Taunus; Brenner's Park Hotel & Spa in Baden-Baden; Australia's renowned Hayman Island Resort; and he opened and managed both the Anassa Resort in Cyprus and The Oberoi Mauritius. Since 2004, Luxem has successfully run the Excelsior Hotel Ernst in Cologne, the Baur au Lac's sister establishment, and in 2009, he was named Germany's "Hotelier of the Year" by the Busche Publisher. During his tenure at the Excelsior Hotel Ernst the venerable hotel was also awarded the 2011 Leaders Club Guest Recognition Award of Excellence by the members of The Leading Hotels of the World's "Leaders Club".
The Latest in Hotel Openings
The Ion Hotel is set to open on the edge of UNESCO-listed Thingvellir National Park in south west Iceland in February. Situated in the slopes of Mount Hengill, the hotel will feature 46 guestrooms as well as a Lava Spa. The spa will house an outdoor hot tub, saunas and a silent relaxation room.
Sands Cotai Central, the integrated resort at the center of Cotai Strip Resorts, has completed the Sheraton Macao Hotel, Cotai Central’s Earth Tower, adding 2,067 new rooms and suites. With this addition, the hotel’s total room count is now 3,896, making it the largest hotel both in Macao and in Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.’s global portfolio. Now that the Earth Tower is complete, Sheraton Macao Hotel will focus on introducing two more outdoor pools.
New Zealand expansion plans set by leading accommodation provider Mantra Group are well on track with a further two properties joining the Group’s Peppers and Mantra hotel networks in New Zealand. The new additions – Peppers Portage and Mantra Lake Tekapo - will bring the total New Zealand network to 12 properties comprised of eight Peppers retreats and resorts; two Mantra resorts and two BreakFree resorts. “Peppers is one of the fastest growing luxury hotel brands in New Zealand having added four spectacular properties to the network in 2012 with further expansion scheduled in 2013,” said Mantra Group CEO, Bob East.
Hard Rock International — owner of one of the world’s most recognized, iconic brands — announces the first ever “Rocksino,” its newest gaming brand, to be located in Northfield, Ohio at Northfield Park racetrack. Construction of Hard Rock Rocksino Northfield Park began on Dec. 30, 2012. Expected to open in December 2013, the Rocksino will stay true to Cleveland’s musical history as the birthplace of rock ‘n’ roll, by offering the legendary vibe of the Hard Rock brand. “Hard Rock is committed to building the premier entertainment and gaming destination in the area. We want to bring something special to a region so rich in music history and are proud this location will launch the ‘Rocksino’ brand,” said Jim Allen, chairman of Hard Rock International. “With more than 2,300 gaming devices, varied dining options and excellent live music events, the Rocksino is sure to become a the premiere entertainment and gaming destination in the Midwest.”
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