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ehotelier Hospitality News Archives: May 2003
Global Hospitality Newsletter: May 30, 2003
* In Europe, the RevPAR fell by 13.5% in April, i.e* a drop equivalent to that of October 2001 * In April, the hotel industry in Europe recorded a drop of 4.8 points in the occupancy rate, and a drop of 6.9% in the average daily rate. * The hard-budget hotel industry held up well and recorded RevPAR growth
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The board of Spain's largest hotel chain, NH Hoteles SA, said Tuesday, May 27 that an unsolicited 258.9 million ($307.4 million) offer last week by Hoteles Hesperia SA for 26.1% of the company's stock was "very far" from the true value of the company.
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PATA WELCOMES LIFTING OF WHO ADVISORIES -PATA has welcomed the lifting of travel advisories for Hong Kong SAR and Guangdong province announced on May 23 by the World Health Organization (WHO). “This is heartening,” said PATA President and CEO, Mr. Peter de Jong. “This not only helps rebuild the travelling public’s confidence, but also that of the travel industry in these destinations.” For the rest of this week's PATA news click More...
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In spite of the end of the Gulf War during the month of April, the crisis touching the worldwide tourism industry, and hotel activity in particular, did not appear to have ended. The incertitude surrounding the unfolding conflict during December and throughout the first trimester of 2003 justified the hesitant market. However, the return to so-called 'normality', although progressive, was not felt in April.
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Marriott International, Inc. today announced that it has sold the Seattle Marriott Waterfront hotel to CNL Hospitality Properties, Inc. for approximately $89 million in cash. Marriott International developed and will continue to operate the hotel under a long-term management agreement with CNL Hospitality Properties, Inc.
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As a consequence of SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) and its impact on HOFEX 2003, the 10th Asian International Exhibition of Hospitality Equipment, Supplies and Technology, Food and Drink, has been further re-scheduled to run from the 10th – 13th February 2004 at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, instead of the originally published re-scheduled dates of 15th – 18th July 2003.
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Marriott International announced today that the company has honored 12 employees with its J. Willard Marriott Award of Excellence. The company established the award in 1987 as a tribute to company co-founder J.Willard Marriott and his ideals of achievement, character, dedication, effort and perseverance.
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Nine members of the Royal Family are to take part in British Tourism Day next month to help the struggling industry. The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh, as well as the other senior Royals, will visit regions throughout Britain to publicise attractions and beauty spots.
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When HITEC® (Hospitality Industry Technology Exposition & Conference) convenes in New Orleans next month, the Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International (HSMAI) will tell sales, marketing and technology professionals what’s new on the technological horizon, as well as the latest trends that will impact the way they do business.
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A meeting of 102 regional travel players in Singapore yesterday endorsed in principle a “big six-figure” regional recovery campaign to put Asia back on the map in terms of travel
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: May 29, 2003
Released today at the German Hotel Association (IHA) annual Congress in Wiesbaden, first quarter results from the HotelBenchmark Survey by Deloitte & Touche reveal the dire performance of the German hotel industry. The war in Iraq, the general decline in long haul travel and the impact of SARS combined with the weak German domestic economy, have all conspired to put increased pressure on occupancy and average room rates for the country’s hoteliers.
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At first glance, the internet and hospitality seem to be an ideal match. Guests at luxury, boutique, lifestyle and design hotels are global in origin, international in attitude and expectant of immediate, excellent service.However, can the carefully cultivated exclusivity that is the essence of unique hotels prosper in an ‘everyone-everywhere’ environment that is basic to the internet?
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The International Congress and Conventions Association (ICCA) will be holding the 7th ICCA Congress & Exhibition in the city of Busan, Korea on 26 – 29 October 2003. As one of IT&CMA’s Endorsing Association, ICCA has declared its strong support for IT&CMA 2003 by ensuring that the dates of ICCA Congress does not clash with those of IT&CMA 2003.
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PKF has expanded its international hotel consultancy services with the launch of an office in Shanghai, China. PKF has undertaken an agreement allowing Shanghai-based Ansley & Associates Inc. to operate as PKF Consulting Ltd, with immediate effect.
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NY Daily News - Despite the citywide butts ban that kicked in March 30, puffers are still welcome at the swanky Plaza hotel watering hole. Ashtrays dot every table - except for the four grouped at the bar's southeast corner, with white signs tagging them as nonsmokers' territory. Smiling waiters and bartenders are quick to hand out elegant matchboxes to patrons who whip out a cigarette or cigar, then slide a small glass ashtray their way.
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The summer months are forecasted to be sunnier than expected this year with the early lifting of the WHO advisory, for Shenzhen, just across the border from Hong Kong.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: May 28, 2003
A huge weight has been lifted off the shoulders of the travel trade here, and right across the border, with last week’s revoking of the travel advisory, yet no one is letting their guard down.
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Preliminary IATA traffic figures for April 2003 show an 18.5% drop in global passenger traffic over April 2002, with SARS-hit Asia Pacific carriers experiencing a 44.8% drop. "The unprecedented combination of crises-the War in Iraq and the SARS-has had a disastrous impact on the international air transport industry in an order of magnitude approaching that of September 11," said Giovanni Bisignani , IATA`s Director General and CEO.
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InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG), the largest international hotel operator in China, has reaffirmed its long-term commitment to the Chinese market despite the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) crisis. IHG's commitment, which includes future investments, was acknowledged last Monday during a cheque presentation in Beijing.
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Culture and Tourism Minister Erkan Mumcu said that the tourism sector shrank by 40 percent in the first sixt months due to the Iraq war and the effects of SARS.
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The Caribbean Hotel Association (CHA) and the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO), have signed an agreement with the Caribbean Forum of African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) States (CARIFORUM), to implement an 8 million public/private sector tourism program in the region. The program for the development of the Caribbean Tourism Industry is funded by the European Union under the 8th European Development Fund (EDF).
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Reed Travel Exhibitions (RTE) has formed a major alliance with Brazil to consider establishing an important new meetings, incentive and business travel event for Latin America.
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As the world prepares to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the first ascent of Everest, a hotel in the heart of Snowdonia is getting ready to mark its own contribution to the feat. Pen-y-gwryd Hotel in Nantgwynant played an important role in the race to conquer Everest.
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An increasing number of five-star hotels in Taipei are joining in a competition with local restaurants for shares in the take-out food market in order to help themselves tide over what has been described as the "coldest winter" for Taiwan's tourist industry due to the outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome. Taipei's Sheraton Hotel succeeded in attracting a large crowd yesterday by selling lunch boxes, prepared by its master chefs, with the first 200 sold at only NT$1
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More cautious travel advisories were called for at a tourism forum of Asia Cooperation Dialogue (ACD), local press reported on Sunday. The ACD group called on governments to be cautious when issuing travel advisories to prevent misconceptions regarding contagious diseases and terror threats, Bangkok Post quoted an unnamed official of Thailand's Tourism and Sports Ministry as saying.
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President Arroyo's successful state visit to the United States and President George W. Bush's reciprocal trip to the Philippines in October are rays of hope in an otherwise bleak year for Philippine tourism, Tourism Secretary Richard Gordon said. The bonanza of publicity in the coming months will keep the Philippines in the news and hopefully attract more visitors to compensate for losses suffered as a result of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and the global war on terrorism that have generally kept people from traveling, he said.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: May 27, 2003
Alois (Al) Wymann, Shangri-La Hotels & Resorts group director of operations and development passed away last Friday, May 23 of natural causes in Beijing, China. Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts issued a release saying, “It is with profound sadness that we announce the sudden death of Al Wymann on the morning of May 23, 2003. “In his 25-year career with Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts he became a mentor to many and was respected for his strong commitment to his work and team. Al will be remembered as one of the industry's leading hoteliers, as a beloved friend and colleague and for his great sense of humour. He will be sadly missed.
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UK Hotel Sector Looks For Bounce In The Second Half Of 2003 According To New PricewaterhouseCoopers Forecast
New statistics on the UK hotel sector today issued by PricewaterhouseCoopers forecast customer demand to gradually pick up in the second half of 2003.Latest research by the firm's Hospitality and Leisure Group reflects the UK's improving macroeconomic position, the end of the Iraq War, the containment of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) as well as marketing efforts to stimulate demand starting to take effect.
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The London hotel market, which has never recovered from the aftermath of 11 September, had its worst April for more than two decades, according to figures just published
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Accor SA Chief Executive Jean-Marc Espalioux said that the French company's slumping hotels business didn't improve in April compared with March
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The 4 star Pentura on Pitt Hotel Sydney has been sold for A$16.5million to a local investment syndicate. The deal was negotiated off-market by Mr Mark Durran, Senior Vice President, Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels on behalf of Topland Property Pty Ltd.
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Hilton International, the world' leading hotel chain, has revealed record sales reservations for its regional and international properties during Arabian Travel Market 2003, while forecasting strong second quarter results
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Two of the Three Major Summer Holidays Will Bring Modest Rebound in Summer Hotel Occupancy Due to Favorable Economic News and an Increase in Drive Travel
According to PricewaterhouseCoopers analysis, Memorial Day and Labor Day weekend occupancies will exceed 2002 occupancies. Memorial Day and July 4th weekend occupancies in 2003 will surpass 2001 levels.
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In what may be seen as a strategic tie-up, Hotel Leela Venture Ltd has joined hands with General Hotel Management (GHM) Singapore, the holding company of Aman Resorts, for its Goa property.
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The American Hotel & Lodging Educational Foundation (AH&LEF) will present members of the Carlson family with the fifth annual Hospitality Heritage Award during the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AH&LA) Fall Conference, November 7-11, in New York City. Considered one of the lodging industry`s most prestigious honors, the award acknowledges the family`s remarkable contributions to the travel and tourism community through Carlson Hospitality Worldwide and related companies.
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As SARS continues to rampage across much of Taiwan and its impact is felt across all sectors, the hospitality industry has geared up to offer an array of promotional campaigns and large-scale renovations to avert the SARS crisis.
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Surprise as little known Birmingham entrepreneur acquires Thistle portfolio. Orb estates, the shadowy Jersey-based company at the centre of a Serious Fraud Office investigation, is this week expected to offload its ownership of32 Thistle hotels to a little-known Birmingham entrepreneur in a deal that values the properties at almost £700 million.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: May 26, 2003
The HotelBenchmark Survey by Deloitte & Touche is the leading survey of its kind, containing data from over 6,000 hotels across all areas of the world outside of North America. The results below reflect a sample of the 320 markets on which we report on a monthly basis, providing depth of coverage and sample sizes, which are unsurpassed in the majority of regions.
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The World Health Organization has lifted its SARS-related travel warnings for Hong Kong and China's Guangdong province, where it is believed the epidemic originated. Health authorities in Hong Kong reported for the 20th day in a row Friday that daily infections and deaths had been in single digits. Officials praised national health authorities for controlling the outbreak in those areas.
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Menzies Hotels Group has raised £72m with the Royal Bank of Scotland to make "significant hotel acquisitions" following a year of record sales and profits.
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The Oberoi group of hotels is in talks with hospitality majors, Four Seasons and Hilton for co-branding and marketing of its properties. The management control will continue with the current team under the chairmanship of PRS Oberoi.
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The Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome outbreak has prompted 72 pct of Europeans to change their holiday travel plans, a study by French insurers Europ Assistance/Ifop said
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How much is too much, and how little is too little? That is the question asked after attending two days of EIBTM in which the Asian region is battling the perceptions surrounding SARS and observing how the most affected countries are dealing with it.
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The 307 hotels in the Malaysian Association of Hotels registered a loss of RM135.50 million for the six weeks from April 1 to May 15 due to the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS).
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On May 5, the advertising industry was in the midst of one of the hottest TV-ad-buying seasons ever. That's why Madison Avenue types were stunned when Jack Klues, chief executive of Starcom Mediavest, the world's largest media buyer, chose that time to praise online advertising.
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The Spring 2003 directory of “The Great Hotels of the World – Incentive & Business Travel Collection” is now available and features 24 new hotel members.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: May 23, 2003
Hotels giant InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) saw half-yearly profits slump more than 30 percent compared to the year before as war in Iraq and the SARS virus badly dented business, it announced Thursday. Pre-tax profits for the six months to the end of March reached 68 million pounds (96 million euros, 111 million dollars), down from 99 million pounds during the same period last year, it said.
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Starwood Hotels Signs Agreement to Sell 14 Hotels for Approximately $312 Million; Negotiating Sale of 4 Additional Hotels
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.has signed a binding agreement to sell a portfolio of 14 non-strategic domestic hotels for approximately $312 million, subject to certain adjustments.
In addition, Starwood is negotiating definitive agreements with another strategic partner for the sale of the 4 additional domestic hotels discussed in the first quarter 2003 earnings release and anticipates entering into agreements in the near future. Proceeds from these and other previously announced asset sales are expected to be approximately $1.1 billion which will be used to repay debt and for general corporate purposes.
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PATA and IATA are organising a Pacific Asia SARS Recovery Meeting to be held in Singapore, May 27. The one-day conference is being created for senior operations, communications and marketing executives from NTOs, airlines, airports, major hotels and travel agencies. The objective is to accelerate travel recovery post-SARS by sharing important information, cooperating on research and advertising initiatives, and developing common positive messages for global media.
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People are likely to die from the SARS disease in Europe and the United States later this year, U.S. Health Secretary Tommy Thompson said on Tuesday. Severe acute respiratory syndrome has so far killed more than 600 of the almost 8,000 people known to have been infected. The vast majority of deaths have so far been in China and Hong Kong, with none reported in the United States or Europe. Asked by reporters in Brussels how confident he was there would be no deaths in his country or Europe, Thompson said: "I am not confident at all. I think you will see some."
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Consolidation Continues To Drive Deal Activity In The Leisure Industry According To New Pricewaterhousecoopers Report
Consolidation will continue in the leisure industry in 2003, as key industry players capitalise on the range of opportunities offered by the current depressed market, according to a "Leisure Sector Insights" a new report on the UK leisure industry from PricewaterhouseCoopers. This inaugural report reviews prospects for the UK leisure industry and includes analysis of four sub-sectors: pubs and bars, gaming, hotels, and travel.
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World Travel & Tourism Council Report - At The 3rd Global Travel & Tourism Summit in Vilamoura, Portugal, the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) released a special report on the economic impact of SARS on the Travel & Tourism industry in China, Hong Kong, Singapore and Vietnam. This special WTTC report has quantified the impact of SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) on the four countries where the World Health Organization has declared travel advisories.
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A taste of the Asia Pacific came to EIBTM today, when AIME 2004, the 12th AsiaPacific Incentives and Meetings Expo, was launched to international media and exhibitors. AIME is one of the largest and most economically significant business travel, incentive and meetings exhibitions held in the southern hemisphere. Held annually in February, the event attracts exhibitors and buyers from throughout the world, but with an emphasis on the Asia Pacific region.
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InterContinental Hotels Group (NYSE: IHG; London [ADRs]) the first hotel company to offer web bookings more than eight years ago, announced that its Internet revenue has increased by 80 percent since the launch of the industry-leading Lowest Internet Rate Guarantee one year ago
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During the period 6-12 May, Singapore visitor arrivals declined 74% as compared to the same period last year. Arrivals from countries like P.R. China, Japan, USA, Australia and Thailand declined over 75%. China had the most significant drop of 93%.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: May 22, 2003
Preliminary April 2003 results from the European edition of the HotelBenchmark Survey by Deloitte & Touche showed larger declines in revPAR (revenue per available room) across Europe than seen post 9/11. RevPAR fell by an unprecedented 22 percent to EUR58 during the month compared to the same period the prior year, a significant decline even by comparison to the levels achieved in September, October and November 2001 where revPAR declined across Europe by 12, 19 and 15 percent respectively compared to the prior year. Although operating conditions remained challenging for hoteliers in April particularly in light of the outbreak of the war in Iraq at the end of March, clearly the timing of Easter this year also had a hand to play.
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Hotels group Millennium & Copthorne said today sales and profits had been savaged during the Sars and Iraq crises. In the three months to 31 March, pre-tax profits crashed to £4.7m from £7.6m a year earlier while sales slumped from £136m to £125m.
Hotels group Millennium & Copthorne said today sales and profits had been savaged during the Sars and Iraq crises. In the three months to 31 March, pre-tax profits crashed to £4.7m from £7.6m a year earlier while sales slumped from £136m to £125m.
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Hotel Benchmarking Revisited; Bottom-Line Comparisons Among Similar Properties Are the ‘Bottom Line’
Financial performance benchmarking – the use of comparative data to evaluate hotel operating efficiency – has become increasingly important to hotel operators over the past few years. Wide fluctuations in travel demand and uncertain economic and political conditions have left hoteliers operating in an anomalous environment. As a result, two basic benchmarking techniques have become both more familiar and useful to those in the lodging industry. The first, historical self-financial analysis, shows how a property is performing in relation to its past. The second, group-financial comparison, indicates how well a property is performing compared to a set of similar hotels. The conclusions drawn from these alternative benchmarking techniques may not always coincide and may leave many questions unanswered.
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ACCOR, the French hotel giant which owns the Ibis and Novotel chains, said growth in the UK, Italian and Spanish leisure markets remained a top priority, but warned of an uncertain summer ahead.
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As the summer months quickly approach, millions of people will make a personal commitment to exercise more and live a healthier lifestyle. However, those who travel frequently often find it difficult to squeeze time for exercise into their daily routine. Today's overworked, stressed out business travelers are looking for simple and practical ways to stay fit when on the road.
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De Vere Strays Off Course - Who Will Grasp The Thistle? - War Leaves Sol Meliá Fighting - NH Hoteles: Riding High In April, Shot Down In May - Orient-Express Reasonably Chuffed - Accor Names Its XI - Island-Hopping In The Middle East - Kempinski Resorts To The Adriatic - Iberostar Shines On Greece - Forte Fits The Bill For Travelodge - Is The Prince Ghana Buy A New Hotel? - April Wash-Out For Hilton - Are You Free In September?
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The dates for the 14th annual Hotel Investment Conference Asia Pacific (HICAP) have been confirmed as October 8-10, 2003 at the InterContinental Hong Kong.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: May 21, 2003
Commission clears Internet hotel bookings joint venture between Accor, Hilton and Six Continents through WorldRes Europe
The European Commission has granted regulatory approval regarding a proposed joint venture between French hotel chain Accor, the British hotel chains Hilton and Six Continents and the American e-commerce company in the global lodging industry WorldRes.Com. The agreement will give joint control to all concerned of WorldRes.Europe, which will operate an Internet-based reservation system and travel agency websites. The deal does not give rise to any significant competition concerns.
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Putting on the Ritz does not look so good on a corporate expense account.
That is the word from Marriott International Inc., which owns the fabled Ritz-Carlton brand and is struggling with a problem of perception that is deepening the effects of the economic downturn on high-end hotels.
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At the beginning of the year, Accor adopted a multibrand, geographical operating organisation at the worldwide level. At the same time, international expertise and support services were brought together and simplified. A transition period was planned for Accor Hotels in Europe, Africa and the Middle East.
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Candlewood Hotel Company Reports 1st Qtr Loss of $7.2 million; Occupancy Off 4.7 Points to 67.9% Compared to Last Year
Candlewood Hotel Company, Inc. a leading owner, manager, and franchisor of high-quality, value oriented, business-travel hotels, announced results for its first quarter ended March 31, 2003.During the first quarter of 2003, occupancy rates for Candlewood hotels owned, leased and managed by the Company decreased 4.7 points to 67.9 percent, compared to 72.6 percent for the same period in 2002.
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Hongkong and Shanghai Hotels, the territory's oldest hotel group, said Monday the combined impact of SARS and the Iraq war are likely to have a "significant" impact on its first half profits. The hotel group, incorporated in 1866, said in a statement that, while it regards the situation to be a short-term challenge, it is not yet possible to quantify the potential impact on its results.
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An impressive range of products and services relating to the hospitality industry will be showcased by 199 exhibitors from 24 countries at The Hotel Show 2003 starting at the Dubai..
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USD2bn, 20 new hotels for Dubai
Twenty new hotels costing more than USD2bn are under construction at present in Dubai, tourism chief Khalid bin Sulayem told Gulf News at the opening of The Hotel Show in Dubai. The event at the Airport Expo is attracting huge interest from hotel suppliers from all over the world. Many companies are exhibiting in the Middle East for the first time.
Global Hospitality Newsletter: May 20, 2003
Struggling luxury hotel chain Le Meridien has featured in most of the weekend business sections, with no clear picture emerging about its immediate future.
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NH Hoteles has dismissed an approach from fellow Spanish hotel chain Hesperia which wants to buy up to 26.1% of NH at €8.30 a share.
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Active Investment Market Testifies Japan's Hotels Are Hot Property - Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels Reports
Tokyo, A rising number of bankruptcies and the restructuring of companies under pressure by creditors created a flurry of hotel investment activity in Japan during 2002, according to latest edition of Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels' Digest Asia.
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Guy Hands, the high-profile financier, has suffered a second year of losses at Hand Picked Hotels, the hotel chain he owns personally and which is run by his wife, Julia
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First quarter results from the Australian edition of the HotelBenchmark Survey by Deloitte & Touche, showed that despite declining international visitor arrivals in February and March hotel performance managed to hold up well.
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For nearly a decade, we at HVS Executive Search have been very strong proponents of pay per performance models for the senior executives of the hospitality industry. In particular, we like most experts on executive compensation, have advised that Chief Executive Officer compensation be closely linked to their companies (stock) performance. One of the essential components of that type of compensation package is a stock option plan that ties the CEO’s financial gain to that of their company’s shareholders.
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The Sars outbreak will cause the loss of millions of jobs in four of Asia's major economies, according to figures from the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC).
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TravelDailyNews.com -- The organisers of International Luxury Travel Market (ILTM) announced that they have already exceeded their sales space of last year only 5 months into the show cycle. "Demand for the show is reflecting the growing sector of luxury travel suppliers and the recognition of the resilience of the very top end of the market in troubled times" , said David Hammond of International Luxury Travel Market.
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Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels Reports Close to USD 700 million worth of hotel transactions across Asia in 2002
Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels, who tracks major hotel sales (over US$2.5 million), recorded a total of 21 hotel sales comprising 5,465 rooms for over US$670 million across Asia in 2002. Japan and Hong Kong were the hotspots for investment activity in terms of sales value. The firm's newly released Asia Digest, Volume Vl 2003 provides a review of operating performance of hotels in Asia including a summary of hotel sales in 2002 and the future outlook for activity in 2003.
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The impact of the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) outbreak on many tourism destinations is already greater than last year's terrorist attack on Bali, while airlines have been hit harder than they were by the war in Iraq, says World Tourism Organization (WTO) Secretary-General Francesco Frangialli.
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HILTON, the hotel and gaming giant, saw business tumble over the first four months of 2003, it said today. The firm, which owns the Hilton chain outside the United States and the Ladbrokes betting group, said overall group profit was down by 25 per cent in the four months to April 30.
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Bosses at leisure group Hilton faced a revolt from shareholders over their pay and two-year contracts. In the latest of a series of angry annual general meetings, investors holding 246m shares - or 27% - voted against the executive remuneration report, compared with 662m in favour. A similar percentage of votes was cast against deputy chief executive Brian Wallace's re-election as a director.
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Millionaire financier Guy Hands is today meeting bankers to thrash out a rescue package for his debt-laden Le Meridien hotels group in a move that could see a rival hotelier step in to run parts of the struggling chain. Hands, for years the City's golden boy and kingpin dealmaker, has already written off the GBP 213 million investment he made in the upmarket hotelier when he was at the Japanese bank Nomura.
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The number-one concern for U.S. restaurant managers is human resources, in particular, finding, training and keeping the best employees, according to a new study at Cornell’s School of Hotel Administration. The study, in which managers of independent operations and chains were surveyed, showed the second top concern to be government rules ill-designed for the food-service industry.
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SARS fears have deepened the global travel industry's troubles and, coupled with broad economic gloom, will bring the loss of 6.9 million tourism jobs this year, according to forecasts by the World Travel and Tourism Council. The nonprofit group, which represents some 1,000 businesses worldwide, said in a report published Thursday that the scale of the SARS crisis was "unprecedented." "SARS has compounded the downturn in the travel and tourism industry," WTTC vice president Richard Miller said. "We've reached the bottom in the travel and tourism industry. The question is, how long will it take to recover," he said.
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A new survey out by the Hong Kong Hotels Association (HKHA) suggests that when its comes to SARS concerns over travel, fear of flying far outstrips fear of hotels. HKHA surveyed 100 travel opinion leaders - Hong Kong-based overseas travel advisers, corporate decision- makers and travel agents - in early April.
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TravelCLICK Announces Top Ten Asia-Pacific Markets for First Quarte - TravelCLICK reported today that Asia-Pacific region room nights booked electronically through the Global Distribution Systems (GDS) and key Internet sites were up 16.4% in the first quarter of 2003 compared to the same quarter last year. In comparison, worldwide electronic room night bookings increased 4.6% for the first quarter of 2003 versus the first quarter of 2002.
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India’s ITC Hotels Ltd on Thursday reported a net profit of Rs 4.32 crore for the quarter to March 31, 2003, an increase of 95 per cent on the figure of Rs 2.21 crore for the same quarter of the previous year. Gross income from operations was Rs 43.86 crore, an increase of 20 per cent on the figure for the previous year’s fourth quarter
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One in seven Australian tourism workers faces unemployment due to the outbreak of SARS, the International Labor Organization says in a report warning that the virus may prompt permanent lifestyle changes. An analysis of the impact of SARS on global travel, published by the UN yesterday, predicts Australia will shed 227,000 tourism-related jobs - or 15 percent of the industry workforce - this year.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: May 16, 2003
Global Staff Movement Update - Who is In and Who Is Out
Edited by Benoit Gateau-Cumin, President, The Boutique Search Firm
For the popular global update on latest global staff movements in the hospitality industry [url=http://ehotelier.com/browse/globalstaff.php]Click Here [/url]
The World Travel & Tourism Council begins its annual conference in Portugal on Thursday. Top of the agenda will be the impact of the Sars virus on Asia's embattled tourism industry. At the elegant Great Eagle Hotel in Hong Kong, occupancy of the 487 rooms has fallen into single digits. "I don't think anyone has seen anything of this nature before," says general manager Nigel Roberts. His experience is typical. This month, the hotel occupancy rate across Hong Kong is 15%, in contrast to a more usual 82%. Following the outbreak of Sars and subsequent travel warnings from the World Health Organization (WHO), four Asian destinations have suffered in particular - China, Hong Kong, Vietnam and Singapore.
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The economy, the Iraq war and terrorism worries, which have put a damper on Americans' travel plans, won't keep people home this Memorial Day weekend, the traditional start of the summer tourism season, travel industry officials said Wednesday. About the same number of people as last year - 35 million - will travel at least 50 miles from home over Memorial Day, predicted AAA, the former American Automobile Association.
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The Hong Kong General Chamber of Commerce (HKGCC) took it upon itself this month to write letters to its members and overseas business contacts to prove that Hong Kong is alive and well. The Chamber also drafted its own proposal for how Hong Kong can get back on its feet, the "Re-invigorate; Re-launch and Re-build" plan
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[url=http://www.e-tid.com/]e-Tid.com [/url] - Goldman Sachs has recommended investors move from NH Hotels to Sol Melia, based on NH's greater exposure to business travellers, although both groups’ shares are expected to perform at least as well as the sector average.
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Of the 13 markets tracked across Australia, nine reported positive revPAR growth during the first three months of the year. Of the nine cities monitored, all, apart from Adelaide, experienced an increase in revPAR, with both Hobart and Sydney reporting double-digit growth of 13.7 and 10.3 percent respectively. Both markets benefited from increased demand from festivals such as the Sydney Festival held from 4-26 January and the Fringe Festival in Hobart from 15-30 March.
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Greatest Factor Affecting U.S. Tourism is not 9/11, not the war in Iraq and not SARS -- It's the Internet
The Internet has revolutionized U.S. tourism during the last two years, a national industry expert said Tuesday. "The single greatest factor affecting (U.S. tourism) is not 9/11, not the war in Iraq and not SARS," said national travel industry consultant and commentator Peter Yesawich. "It's the Internet." Yesawich told local industry leaders during the Greater Phoenix Convention and Visitors Bureau's annual tourism summit that technology has permanently changed the way Americans shop for vacations.
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Emirates Towers and The Jumeirah Beach Hotel, part of Dubai-based luxury hospitality group Jumeirah International, have received awards in several categories during the 2003 Business Traveller Middle East Awards luncheon which was held recently at the Emirates Towers Hotel. The InterContinental properties in Abu Dhabi, Beirut, Cairo and Riyadh were singled out as the best business hotels in their local markets by readers of Business Traveller Middle East
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LA Times - New York hotelier Ian Schrager, who has been pleading money problems over the abandoned renovation of Montecito's Miramar Hotel, has been served with a notice of default giving him three months to pay off a loan of almost $16 million. The foreclosure department of Chicago Title Co. filed the notice on the owner of the Miramar property, once one of California's coastal landmarks.
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TravelWeeklyEast.com Interview with Patrick Imbardelli.
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PATA TO ANNOUNCE POST-SARS RECOVERY STRATEGY - PATA and an international public relations firm are working on a post-SARS tourism recovery campaign to be announced later this month. If supported by PATA NTO members, the collective and far-reaching campaign will provide the world’s media with consistent and positive messages about travel to, from and within Pacific Asia. The campaign aims to fully complement the marketing and recovery programmes of both public- and private-sector travel and tourism organisations throughout Pacific Asia
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By the end of the week hotel and tour operator Orbis is to submit a binding offer for purchase of Polish hotels owned by its French sector investor, Accor. If the deal goes through, the company will be able to enter the lucrative two star hotel sector. Orbis wants to acquire a stake in Hekon, a company which accumulated Polish investments of the French investor.
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New Zealand's biggest hotel operator, CDL Hotels, after a record profit last year, says that Air New Zealand's proposed alliance with Qantas, the Sars outbreak and global conflict make it difficult to predict future growth. Chairman John Wilson said at the annual meeting yesterday that after September 11, the foot-and-mouth outbreak in Britain and war, all he needed now was "a plague of locusts".
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: May 15, 2003
Organized by the Reed Travel Exhibition, under the patronage of H.H. General Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum and supported by the Government of Dubai's Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing, the Arabian Travel Mart (ATM) - the Middle East's premier travel and tourism exhibition, celebrated its tenth anniversary as the biggest ever ATM since its conception, held this year, 06-09 May, 2003 at the Airport Expo Dubai. The Mart attended by around 783 exhibitors from 55 countries, 312 buyers, some 100 international media people on the working team and a record number of over 4,000 visitors (as on the third day of the ATM).This year, the ATM has attracted a host of newcomers, including some 60 new stand holders.
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THE world travel industry meets in Portugal this week, to discuss the global travel slump.The meeting will address the industry's downturn following the 2001 terror attacks on America, the war in Iraq and the deadly SARS virus, all of which discouraged many people from traveling.The sixty speakers at the World Travel and Tourism Council meeting include several presidents of major international airlines and hotel chains.Following the SARS outbreak earlier this year, travel bookings for destinations in Asia, the region worst affected, fell by sixty percent.
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There's a new member of the franchise family at Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, and company officials are intrigued by the possibilities that franchising The Luxury Collection brings to all of Starwood's products-particularly to its guest-loyalty program. "Distribution to the continued success of Starwood Preferred Guest [loyalty program] is always a consideration in every decision we make," said Chuck Tomb, who took over as the company's senior v.p. of franchise development in mid-February.
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Edouard Ettedgui, Group Chief Executive of Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group has announced that Mandarin Oriental will launch an exclusive extension of their luxury hotel experience with the opening of The Residences at Mandarin Oriental, New York. The 65 luxurious condominiums are currently under construction above the hotel component of AOL Time Warner Center at Columbus Circle. Stunning architecture and spectacular views of Central Park will be a feature of The Residences at Mandarin Oriental, New York.
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While other Caribbean destinations are feeling the sting resulting from the dwindling economy and the recent war with Iraq, tourism in Puerto Rico remains stable and profitable, according to April figures released by the Puerto Rico Tourism Company (PRTC) and the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) which indicate hotel occupancy figures upwards of 90 percent. April statistics revealed a 79.1 percent occupancy average, with San Juan metropolitan hotels reporting 81.4 percent and non-metro region hotels weighing in at 74.2 percent. "Our latest hotel occupancy figures are very positive and are a good sign for Puerto Rico's travel industry," said José M. Suárez, executive director of the PRTC. "These figures are leading us toward a productive year."
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: May 14, 2003
Profits for hotelier group De Vere fell 5% in the first half of the year. The firm, which owns Ryder Cup golfing venue the Belfry and Brighton's Grand Hotel, said pre-tax profits fell to £15m in the 26 weeks to March 30 Trading had remained challenging in the first five weeks of its second half, it added. Hotel groups across the world are suffering from a drop in corporate business because of the economic downturn and a decline in tourism following the September 2001 attacks on the US. De Vere has escaped the worst, thanks to its provincial focus and solid demand for its leisure break holidays The firm, which runs 21 De Vere and 14 Village hotels, said sales and revenues per available room (RevPar) - a key industry measure - had both risen in its first half. But RevPar had slipped at both brands in the first five weeks of the second half, partly hit by the timing of Easter.
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[url=http://www.e-tid.com/]e-tid.com [/url] - The new owner of Thistle Hotels, Singaporean investment group BIL, is itself currently the subject of a takeover battle, reports the Daily Telegraph . BIL won control of Thistle just two weeks ago with a bid of 130p-a-share, valuing the hotel company at £627m.
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TWST nterview with Alan Parker, Whitbread Hotel Company – Managing Director of Whitbread Hotel Company
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Are business trips going the way of the dinosaurs? Business travel has been sinking under the weight of terror alerts, airport security delays and corporate cutbacks. Now some companies are wondering whether workers should take business trips at all.
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The long-standing head of TUI hotel chain Robinson, Karl Pojer, has been named head of the group?s hotel and resorts division from the start of June. This covers holdings in 287 hotels with more than 150,000 beds. Pojer, who has worked in the hotel trade throughout his career, replaces Peter Seeger who takes over as head of the new TUI Shared Service Centre, which covers central administrative activities such as contracting, accounting and logistics.
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A series of major new hotel-construction projects in the city will not be completed in time for the St. Petersburg's 300th anniversary celebrations, with market analysts estimating that the firms involved will lose revenue of around $5 million as a result of the delays.
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People have long been talking about the need in Russia for affordable international-standard lodging, cheaper than the four- and five-star hotels that dominate in Moscow and St. Petersburg. This year the talk has given way to plans to establish chains of just such hotels across the country.
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Arabian Travel Market (ATM) will move next year to the Dubai World Trade Centre`s (DWTC) Dubai International Convention Centre (DICC), the brand new state-of-the-art conference, exhibition and meetings facility, officials announced.
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Measures to prevent SARS from spreading - Authorities in China's former capital Nanjing have shut 566 hotels, saunas, hair salons and Internet cafes in a bid to prevent SARS from spreading, state press and officials said Monday. The city has already quarantined 10,000 people. "We have implemented the measure in an attempt to prevent Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome from spreading," said an official from the Nanjing Tourism Administration Bureau
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Flying in the face of a global economic downturn and to some extent profiting from it as investors look for markets that still have some growth in them, Moscow hotels had their best year since the 1998 crisis last year. And hoteliers say that even the opening of two new international-branded hotels last year will do little to dampen their performance.
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Investment in the Italian hotel property sector, the second largest in the world after the U.S., is set for significant expansion, real estate services company Jones Lang LaSalle said. "International investment has previously been restrained by many barriers, including the limited range of investment vehicles and the nature of a market that is dominated by family-run businesses, resulting in a dearth of suitable hotels for sale," Roberto Galano, senior vice-president at Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels, told Reuters in an interview. "As international activity increases in Italian office and retail markets, and bank finance becomes more readily available, investment activity should increase significantly," he said. Italy achieved the second-highest volume of single-asset hotel sales in Europe, after Britain, last year, a Jones Lang LaSalle survey showed. But the figures were skewed by one big deal, the sale of the Four Seasons hotel in Milan, which accounted for around 80 percent of the total and attracted a record price per room.
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Four major hotels in Shanghai, China's biggest city, are closing for up to three months due to lack of guests amid the SARS outbreak, employees said Monday. The closures of the Peace Hotel, the Shanghai Hotel, the Jinjiang Tower and the Donghu Hotel follow a steep decline in travel and add to the economic devastation of SARS, which has killed at least 252 people on China's mainland. Airlines, restaurants and other travel-related businesses are expected to suffer huge losses. Shanghai has reported only seven SARS cases and one death, but foreign tourists have heeded advisories to avoid China and the country is telling its own people not to travel.
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/Business Wire/ - Hospitality Properties Trust (NYSE: HPT) today announced that it has terminated Wyndham International's (AMEX: WBR) occupancy and operations of 12 Wyndham hotels. HPT has two leases with WBR subsidiaries: one lease includes 15 Summerfield by Wyndham hotels; the second lease includes 12 Wyndham hotels. On April 1, 2003, WBR failed to pay rent due HPT under these leases. On April 2, 2003, HPT declared WBR in default and simultaneously exercised its rights to retain certain collateral security HPT held for the WBR lease obligations, including security deposits of $33 million (which were not escrowed) and capital replacement reserves totaling about $7 million (which were previously escrowed). On April 28, 2003, HPT terminated WBR's occupancy of the 15 Summerfield hotels and appointed Candlewood Hotel Company as manager of those hotels.
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/Times Online /
- Guy Hands, the former Nomura financier famed for buying and selling chains of pubs and betting shops, has been getting a blast of bad publicity in the past few weeks, prompting him to go on a bit of a PR offensive. First, Terra Firma, the fund he set up after leaving the Japanese bank, is struggling to raise the sort of sums he had planned. Hands had hoped to raise Euro 3billion (Pounds 2billion) but has had to settle for a slightly lower figure of about Euro 2billion.
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When the Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International (HSMAI) presents its 14th annual Affordable Meetings® National show, Sept. 3 - 4, 2003, at the new Washington Convention Center, attendees will have access to the largest number of educational seminars offered in the industry at an individual event, all free-of-charge.Qualified meeting planners can choose from 35 seminars at the two-day event, which delivers an unmatched exposition along with the dynamic educational program of workshops on topics related to cost-effective meeting planning, a particularly relevant subject given today's challenging economic climate.
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Situation improving after the US removes its travel warning for Singapore, which has not had a new Sars case for 11 days. The dark clouds which have hung over the tourism industry for eight weeks began to lift yesterday, Singapore's 11th day without a new Sars case. The United States has said it is safe to visit Singapore, and Switzerland's tourism agency is playing host to four Singaporean travel agents. Switzerland Tourism said 'tip-top' anti-Sars measures here had made it confident it was safe to invite Singaporeans, although it would not be hosting agents from China, Hongkong or Taiwan.
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[url=http://www.caterer.com]Caterer.com [/url] - The number of overseas visitors to the UK increased marginally in the three months to the end of March but the number of visits from North America is still weak, according to the latest figures from the Office for National Statistics. The International Passenger Survey (IPS) reveals an 8% increase in incoming tourists to 4.9 million in the three months to the end of March, compared with 4.5 million visitors in the same period a year earlier.
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Two luxury brands renowned for accommodating the discerning traveler have entered into a three-year marketing relationship. The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, L.L.C. and Mercedes-Benz USA (MBUSA) launched their marketing agreement with the introduction of a special "Key to Luxury" package in which select locations offer guests the use of 2003 Mercedes-Benz vehicles during their stays. The package includes a deluxe guest room on The Ritz-Carlton Club level and use of a 2003 Mercedes-Benz with unlimited mileage for the duration of the guest's stay, a full tank of gas each morning and overnight valet parking. Select 2003 Mercedes-Benz models available to guests include the all-new E-Class sedan, S-Class flagship sedan, SL roadster, CLK coupe, and M-Class and G-500 sports utility vehicles.
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Yahoo Finance - Marriott International Inc. said that it will have a sales presence in Iraq by the end of June. The U.S. hotel group said in a statement that it has appointed Capital Development & Marketing Corp., or CDMC, as its sales representative in Baghdad.
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The Moskva hotel opposite the State Duma will be razed to the ground this fall and then rebuilt, Interfax reported late last week. The 68-year-old hotel will be closed on July 30 and demolition will begin Sept. 15. Reconstruction is to be completed by 2006, on the orders of Moscow Mayor Yury Luzhkov.
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AsiaTravelTips.com - During the period 22-28 April, Singapore visitor arrivals declined 74% as compared to the same period last year. Arrivals from countries like Japan, USA, Hong Kong SAR, Malaysia and Thailand declined by about 80% while arrivals from P R China dropped by 92%. The Singapore Tourism Board stated that travel advisories and alerts by various countries (namely Japan, Australia, South Korea, New Zealand, USA, Canada, Thailand, Brunei, Indonesia, Philippines, Malaysia, Spain, China, France, Belgium, Mexico, Ireland and Italy), as well as the cancellation of different events contributed to the decline in visitor arrivals (67% or 192,800) over the period of 1-28 April. During this period, Thailand, Hong Kong SAR, USA, Japan and Malaysia recorded the highest percentage decline of over 70%.
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With next month's launch of the Shangri-La Hotel, Dubai, the first property outside the Far East for the Hong Kong-based Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts, the group is spearheading a development drive in the region that will number three properties and 1,400 rooms and apartments in three years.
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- As China continues to try and contain the SARS outbreak, the government unveiled plans late last week to offer economic aid to a variety of sectors throughout the country, including the travel trade. The China National Tourism Administration (CNTA) and the Beijing Tourism Administration (BTA) are now defining what the financial assistance will mean for the travel industry in Beijing and other key destinations throughout China.
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Contemporary boutique style hotel set for year-end launch - Following the takeover of management at the Ritz Kuwait, a second phase of Le Meridien's major deal with the A'amal Hotels Company will be the year-end launch of an Art+Tech hotel in the heart of Kuwait city - the first such designer property for Le Meridien in the Middle East. The 70-room, city boutique hotel will add a new dimension to the hospitality sector in the emirate, according to Hannes Yaghi, general manager of the Ritz Kuwait and project overseer, who confirmed a second, 120-unit Art+Tech hotel in the Mubarakia area is also scheduled to open in 2004. The two hotels will bring cutting-edge technology as well as innovative room design to the hospitality sector in the Gulf. Yaghi said: "In destinations as diverse as Hong Kong and Frankfurt, the Art+Tech design by Le Meridien has been chosen as the concept of the future for prestigious hotel projects such as the Asian Cyberport and the German Airrail Centre
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Aftermath of SARS and Recovery Strategies for Tourism to Be Discussed at First Asia-Pacific CHRIE Conference
Aftermath of SARS epidemic and recovery strategies will be the topic of a special panel presentation to be featured at the First Asia-Pacific CHRIE (APacCHRIE) Conference slated to take place at Lotte Hotel in Seoul, Korea, on May 21-23, 2003. Panel speakers include Dr. Bob McKercher, Associate Professor of Tourism at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University's School of Hotel and Tourism Management, Tony Tse, former General Manager of Corporate Communications for the Hong Kong Tourism Board and currently the director of industry partnership at the Hotel and Tourism School at the Hong Kong PolyU, and Fred A. Tibbitts, CEO of FAT Associates in New York.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: May 13, 2003
e-Tid.com - Arun Amarsi has been named as managing director and CEO for Thistle Hotels in a major board-level shake-up a week after BIL’s 130p per share offer was accepted by Thistle.
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Orient-Express Hotels Ltd.owners of 40 deluxe hotel, restaurant, tourist train and river cruise properties in 17 countries, today announced its results for the first quarter ended March 31, 2003. Net earnings for the period were a loss of $2.6 million (loss of $0.08 per common share) on revenue of $61.6 million, compared with net earnings of $0.4 million ($0.01 per common share) on revenue of $53.7 million in the year earlier period. The difference year on year was influenced by Easter falling in the second quarter of 2003 while it was in the first quarter of 2002. Also, the Le Manoir and La Residencia acquisitions did not bear depreciation and finance cost for all of the first quarter of 2002 because they were only acquired in this period, while the full period such costs were charged in the first quarter of 2003.
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Expansion project in tandem with emirate's economic growth
With a new management contract for the Ritz Kuwait Hotel, plus two additional properties scheduled to open in the emirate within a year, Le Meridien Hotels & Resorts is confident that a new era of economic growth has arrived for the northern Gulf state. According to Hannes Yaghi, the Ritz will be rebranded as Le Meridien Kuwait following a nine-month renovation, and is the first stage in a six-project, three-year expansion plan for Le Meridien in Kuwait, encompassing 450 rooms plus a conference centre. "This strategic deal with A'amal Holdings may seem ambitious, but long-term we see great potential in the emirate, and not just for traditional corporate business," he said.
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2003 commenced on the back of unprecedented growth in 2002 for the South African tourism market. However, the combination of a downturn in the world economy, the war in Iraq, a rapidly strengthening Rand and fears about the SARS virus all appeared to be conspiring to blunt the achievements of 2002. The release this week of the 2003 first quarter results of the HotelBenchmark survey by Deloitte & Touche for South Africa strongly suggests that the positive trend has continued. Whilst occupancies maintained the high levels achieved in 2002, average room rates increased on average by 18 percent across the country and revPAR (revenue per available room) increased by 21 percent. This is the first quarter that occupancy, average room rates and revPAR information has been available on a grade basis for three, four and five-star hotels in Cape Town and Johannesburg. The results of this detailed information make exciting reading
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eTurbo.com - DUBAI - Tourism has forever been an industry closely linked with optimism, both on a sectoral collective basis as well as by the travelers themselves, all of who travel to seek enjoyment, enlightenment and a safe return home. In recent months many storm clouds were hanging over our industry, and while we did see some brief flashes of brightness over the horizon, a general climate change for our sector seemed somewhat distant still.
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Organisers of EIBTM 2003 have reassured exhibitors from Asia, specifically SARS-affected areas, that they will be welcome to Geneva where the show is being held for the last time. James Air, head of sales for EIBTM and who is responsible for Asia, told TravelWeekly, "No one is being turned away and all nationalities are welcome." Concerns had been raised by travel industry players in SARS-affected countries that they might not be welcome in Geneva following the widely-publicised incident in Basle where Hong Kong and China exhibitors were turned away from a watch and jewellery fair. Air, who is with Reed Travel Exhibitions, MICE Events, said this "was an isolated case in the jewellery industry."
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AsiaTravelTips.com - The impact of the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) outbreak on many tourism destinations is already greater than last year's terrorist attack on Bali, while airlines have been hit harder than they were by the war in Iraq, says World Tourism Organization (WTO) Secretary-General Francesco Frangialli. The World Health Organization, with which WTO maintains close cooperation, has never experienced a comparable event in its history, and the characteristics of this atypical pneumonia - its rapid spread from one corner of the planet to another by travellers, cases of transmission during hotel stays, in restaurants, places of entertainment, or even during airplane trips - make it a phenomenon that is perceived to be linked with tourism itself, even though local transmission (close contact in households, hospitals and other contexts) is more prevalent by far. Out of the 6,000 probable cases of SARS, only five are believed to have possibly resulted from transmission in a cabin, and those occurred before screening procedures and other security measures were introduced in many airports and companies.
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eTN - EUROPEAN Union health ministers have backed away from a proposal to screen travelers from areas affected by the SARS virus after taking advice from a senior UN health official. Officials said the idea of screening incoming travelers was backed by Italy at an emergency meeting of EU health ministers, but Germany and others opposed it. The proposal was among several laid out in draft conclusions of an emergency meeting of health ministers in Brussels called to discuss how to prevent the flu-like illness from spreading in Europe.
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eTN - THE Government of Kuwait decided to adopt tourism as part of its development policy. Hence, the Tourism Affairs Sector was established within the organizational structure of the Ministry of Information, and Kuwait has regained its membership in the World Tourism Organization. The tourism sector has started taking executive steps to activate this development policy. It is expected that the International Consultancy Firm, which the tourism board will work with, will start to implement the tourism strategy in the upcoming period. The WTO will supervise this study in cooperation with the United Nations Development Program, in addition to the Ministry of Planning and Tourism Board.
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eTurbo.com - Recently opened Grand Hyatt Dubai, the largest hotel conference facility in the Middle East, represents Hyatt International's expansion plans for Grand Hyatt hotels by developing large multi-complex properties in gateway cities. John Wallis, senior vice president of marketing for Hyatt International, spoke about the overall development of the Middle East and Hyatt. "Dubai's potential will be realised when the International Monetary Fund (IMF) meets in the emirate in September of this year. Dubai has already established itself as an outstanding tourist destination and important commercial hub. However, with hosting the IMF, the opening of the new Convention Centre and hotels such as Grand Hyatt Dubai, the city will also attract the attention of the global conference industry which will take Dubai's travel market to the next level," he predicted. Hyatt International's first presence in the Middle East was with Hyatt Regency Dubai, an imposing property that throughout its 23-year history has remained a prominent Citylandmark.Hyatt Regency Dubai made its mark for exceptional customer service, as well as the enduring popularity of its restaurants. "Hyatt International is very focused on ensuring that the success of the restaurants within the local market form an integral part of the success of the global brand," said Frank Ansel, vice president of food and beverage, Hyatt International.
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More Developments in The Middle East: As well as opening new locations in key European cities such as Berlin and Istanbul, the Swiss Hotel chain Movenpick Hotels &Y Resorts is paying particular attention to accelerating its expansion strategy in the Middle East. With 26 hotels this important region continues to grow - the takeover of an existing hotel in Dubai now opens also the market in the United Arab Emirates. The remarkable success story began 30 years ago with the arrival of the first Movenpick hotel in the Middle East , the Movenpick Resort Cairo Pyrmanids.
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Preparations for this year's Australian Tourism Exchange (ATE) are on track, with strong attendance from international tourism operators, Australian Tourist Commission (ATC) Managing Director Ken Boundy said recently. ATE is the largest tourism trade show in the Southern Hemisphere and will this year be held in Melbourne from 14 - 20 June 2003. The event provides a forum for Australian tourism businesses to showcase their products and meet with international wholesalers. "ATE is one of the most important trade events for Australian tourism operators providing an opportunity to secure business with international wholesalers and retailers from over 48 countries," Mr Boundy said.
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World events and economic climate has not stunted F&B income claim loyalty experts - Middle East consumers are continuing to dine out, with a seven per cent rise in restaurant spending, according to loyalty marketing specialists, HMC (Hospitality Marketing Concepts). HMC, one of the world's leading providers of travel industry membership and database management programmes, has researched current trends in the regional market to assess the impact of recent events – and its results contradict subjective views that consumers have been cautious in discretionary spending so far this year.
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THE final curtain is about to be brought down on the once mighty Forte hotel and catering empire. The company's old corporate headquarters in London, at 166 High Holborn, is to be converted into a budget Travelodge hotel. It sounds an ignominious fate for what was the nerve centre of the Forte family's campaign to fight off Granada back in the mid-1990s. But in many ways there is a pleasing symmetry about the plans
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Discounts range from 30% to 50% - Several hotel chains in Thailand have made additional cuts to their low-season rates in an attempt to fill vacant rooms with local travellers amid the travel and tourism slump. The French group Accor, for example, is offering a "Cool Deals'' promotion to Thais and expatriates at its properties in Thailand, Cambodia and Laos until Sept 30. According to Tom Raccette, Accor regional director of communications, rates are up to 30% lower than last year. For example, rates in Bangkok are 2,050 baht a night at the Sofitel Silom and 2,731 baht on weekdays and 2,600 baht on weekends at the Sofitel Central Plaza Bangkok. Room rates at Accor hotels outside Bangkok include 3,290 baht (weekdays) and 4,290 baht (weekends) at the Sofitel Central Hua Hin Resort, 1,450 baht at the Sofitel Raja Orchid Khon Kaen, 1,277 baht (weekdays) and 1,777 baht (weekends) at the Coralia Rim Pae Rayong, 2,000 baht at the Novotel Coralia Phuket and 1,000 baht at the Novotel Chiang Mai.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: May 9, 2003
Le Meridien flags new business in Kuwait
Expansion project in tandem with emirate’s economic growth
With a new management contract for the Ritz Kuwait Hotel, plus two additional properties scheduled to open in the emirate within a year, Le Meridien Hotels & Resorts is confident that a new era of economic growth has arrived for the northern Gulf state
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: May 8, 2003
Many hotel markets in the region are proving somewhat problematic for hotel investors, lenders, and management companies in securing opportunities. However, recent research conducted by HVS in Bangkok indicates that there is currently a buzz of activity in the hotel sector in the city. On the surface there is just one new five-star hotel opening, the 392- room Conrad Hotel, however this does not reflect the true picture of the likely changes in the branding and room inventory in the five-star hotel market in Bangkok over the next 18 months. Table one sets out a list of hotel projects current underway or rumoured in Bangkok.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: May 2, 2003
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