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ehotelier Hospitality News Archives: July 2005
Global Hospitality Newsletter: July 29, 2005
West Paces Hotel Group, an investment firm controlled by hotelier Horst Schulze, said Tuesday it'll spend $700 million to launch a luxury hotel chain that will compete with Four Seasons and Ritz-Carlton.
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Mandarin Oriental International is pursuing hotel projects in Beijing and Shanghai in what could be its first investments on the mainland, according to the company's finance director, John Witt. The potential foray into the thriving market, likely to be executed through management contracts, comes on the back of rapid growth in the number and affluence of mainland travellers.
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French hotels group Accor SA said Wednesday second-quarter revenue jumped nearly 8 percent, boosted by a rebound at its budget hotels. Revenue in the April-June period totaled 1.97 billion euros ($2.36 billion), up from 1.83 billion euros a year earlier. The 2004 figures were restated under the recently introduced International Financial Reporting Standards.
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The Westin Sydney appoints Mark Burns as General Manager, Fred Matti promoted to Vice President & Area Manager of Starwood South East Asia
The award-winning Westin Sydney, located at No. 1 Martin Place, has appointed Mr. Mark Burns as its new General Manager. Mr. Burns, who most recently held the position of General Manager at Sheraton Mirage Resort & Spa Gold Coast, will be commencing at The Westin in early August. Mr. Matti is relocating to Kuala Lumpur, where he will take up the post of Vice President & Area Manager, South East Asia, for Starwood Asia Pacific Hotels & Resorts.
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Cendant Corporation Announces Definitive Agreement to Sell its Marketing Services Division to Affinity Acquisition Holdings LLC for Approximately $1.83 Billion - Transaction Expected to Close in the Fall
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The first semester concluded with very good results for the French hotel industry, which is leading the European hotel industry with an acceleration in average daily rate growth. Activity during the first 6 months remained positive in the United Kingdom (RevPAR up by +5.9%) while results from Germany were nearly unchanged (+1.7%). Spain is still having problems of overcapacity and registered a drop in RevPAR during the first semester (-4.5%).
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Luxury Brand Announces 12% Revenue Growth Year Over Year. After a strong start to 2005, Small Luxury Hotels of the World has continued its growth through the second quarter of the year with a 12% increase in revenue YTD over the same period last year.
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Hilton Hotels Corporation today reported financial results for the second quarter and six months ended June 30, 2005. Second quarter highlights include diluted EPS of $.49 versus $.19 in 2004 period; recurring net income of $110 million, a company quarterly record; and timeshare profitability up 44 percent.
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Active Hotels, one of Europe’s leading online hotel reservations providers, has won the ‘Growth Strategy of the Year’ award in the regional heats of the National Business Awards.
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Accor Asia Pacific can proudly claim to have New Zealand’s finest young hotel manager with the Hotel and Catering International Management Association (HCIMA) announcing Novotel Capital Wellington’s Lisa Chater, as the recipient of the 2005 ‘Best Young Hotel Manager’ award. The award was announced at a ceremony in Christchurch last night.
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The Hilton Family of Hotels has received three highest-ranking awards in the J.D. Power and Associates 2005 North America Hotel Guest Satisfaction Index Study(SM), outperforming all other hospitality companies within their respective hotel segments. Hampton Hotels, Hilton Garden Inn and Homewood Suites by Hilton achieved the highest guest satisfaction scores in three separate segments, including Mid-Scale Limited Service, Mid-Scale Full Service and Extended-Stay Hotel Chain segments, respectively.
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Hongkong & Shanghai Hotels Ltd., which operates the luxury Peninsula hotel chain, on Thursday reported sharply higher first-half earnings because of an exceptional gain from the sale of a hotel in Hong Kong.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: July 28, 2005
Despite rising room rates and increased hotel occupancy, customer satisfaction in the hotel industry is up, according to the J.D. Power and Associates 2005 North America Hotel Guest Satisfaction Index Study(SM) released today.
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Right there, “above the fold” of Tuesday’s New York Times (7/26/05), an article, headlined, “Ambitions are Fueling a Division of Labor”, an ominous message was delivered to Hospitality operators. Two major Unions (SEIU and the Teamsters) have withdrawn from Labor’s main Federation, the AFL-CIO. Two others, the United Food and Commercial Workers and our own UNITE HERE, are not only boycotting the annual convention but also have declared their plans to depart the AFL-CIO, as well. These moves indicate a stormy road ahead for the Hospitality Industry. Why, one might ask? By John R. Hendrie, CEO, Hospitality Performance, Inc.
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Ronald T. Harrison Appointed President of Marriott Lodging Canada and Senior Vice President of Marriott International
Marriott International is pleased to announce the appointment of Ronald T. Harrison as president of Marriott Lodging Canada and senior vice president of Marriott International. In his new role, Mr. Harrison is responsible for lodging operations for all Marriot hotels and resorts in Canada. With 45 hotels in Canada, generating $400 million in revenue per year, Mr. Harrison projects the brand will grow to more than 70 properties over the next several years
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Average rates rise 16.5% but local hoteliers say Singapore tariffs are still under-priced. Although occupancy and revenue per available room (RevPAR) at Singapore's five-star hotels improved in the first six months of this year, they still lag those in Bangkok, Hong Kong, Beijing and Shanghai, according to the latest report on key Asia hotel markets by Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels (JLLH).
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Steigenberger Hotels AG, based in Frankfurt am Main, is pleased with its growth during the first half-year of 2005. The company’s 77 hotels have maintained a positive market position despite the poor economic situation.
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Radisson SAS Hotels and Resorts, part of the fast-growing, Brussels-based Rezidor SAS Hospitality, has unveiled the interior design philosophy behind its latest property, the Radisson SAS, Dubai Media City . Situated in the heart of new Dubai , the hotel will be the first to open in Media City and marks Radisson SAS’ return to the emirate.
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Fairmont Hotels & Resorts Inc. today announced its unaudited financial results for the three and six months ended June 30, 2005.
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Starwood Hotels & Resorts, which owns the Sheraton, Westin and St Regis hotel brands, is exploring the possibility of expanding its presence in SA. While the group has no firm plans, it is looking for new opportunities, which may include Starwood’s latest brands, the trendy W and XYZ hotels.
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Despite the ongoing hotel war in Tokyo with many international hotels debuting, the chief of the Preferred Hotel Group in Chicago is optimistic about its expansion here. "Competition is healthy for the industry," John Ueberroth said in a recent interview in Tokyo with The Japan Times. He was attending the International Hotel Forum July 10-13 to sell his group's appeal to the Japanese hotel and tourism industries.
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Corinthia Hotels International (CHI) was named one of the Czech Republic’s first ‘Superbrands' by the Country’s newly set up Superbrand Council. The Superbrand programme, one of 30 worldwide, evaluates the best global and local brands in a selected destination and produces a high-calibre publication profiling each of the chosen brands.
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The Educational Institute of the American Hotel & Lodging Association, in conjunction with the American Hospitality Academy (AHA), has published a turnkey hospitality internship program, SERVLEAD, Service Leadership in a Multicultural Workplace.
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Hospitality eBusiness Strategies (HeBS), a leading Internet marketing and distribution consulting firm for the hospitality industry, today announced the firm will present a one-day Internet Marketing workshop at the Economy & Budget Hotels World 2005 Conference, September 19-21 at the Royal Garden Hotel in London.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: July 27, 2005
REVPAR at Same-Store Owned Hotels in North America and worldwide increased 12.7% and 12.3%, respectively, when compared to the second quarter of 2004. ADR increased 9.0% and 7.5% in North America and worldwide, respectively. Globally, REVPAR for Same-Store Owned Hotels grew for W Hotels (17.2%), followed by Westin (13.0%), St. Regis/Luxury Collection (11.7%), and Sheraton (11.0%), with each of these brands experiencing both ADR and occupancy gains.
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Hilton Hotels Corp. on Monday said it completed the sale of 11 hotels for gross proceeds of $416 million in a move to take advantage of "attractive" market prices for hotel assets.
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Fresh bed sheets every day aren't automatic in hotel rooms anymore. In the next two months, Marriott's Courtyard, Fairfield Inn, Fairfield Inn & Suites and SpringHill Suites brands will begin testing customers' reaction to changing the sheets every other night instead of daily. "It's a growing industry trend," says Marriott's Steve Samson. By Gary Stoller, USA TODAY
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Accor has named Dennis Oldfield as General Manager Delegate for Accor Hotels India effectively immediately as the company continues its rapid development around the country.
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Recognising that technology is a key driver behind the global travel and tourism industry, World Travel Market is launching a dedicated , stand-alone Travel Technology area for the first time. The launch coincides with a serious upturn in the IT industry and World Travel Market`s unique 'show within a show' concept will offer important insights into the latest global advances.
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The world's largest luxury hotel chain plans to protect its turf in its head office city. Four Seasons Hotels Inc. will take the wraps off a posh, $325-million hotel project in Toronto's tony Yorkville district on Monday that will go head to head against new rivals as the battle heats up for well-heeled customers. The chain will run the 265-room hotel slated for opening in 2009. It will be owned by Saudi Arabia's Prince al-Waleed bin Talal, ranked by Forbes as the world's fifth richest man.
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Asian Hotels Alliance (AHA), Asia’s largest and most prestigious hotel marketing association, will host a China Road Show in Hong Kong, Shanghai and Beijing between August 1 and August 5, 2005 to showcase the nearly 70 outstanding properties in the Asia Pacific Region.
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“Ethics in the Hospitality and Tourism Industry,” a new textbook published by the Educational Institute of the American Hotel & Lodging Association, addresses a topic ranked first in importance to hospitality education.
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New Site from Pegasus Solutions Will Help Travelers Discover Unique Hotel Finds. A new travel Web site called hotelbook.com(TM) dedicated to helping travelers discover and book unique, independent hotels around the world was officially launched today by Pegasus Solutions Inc. (Nasdaq:PEGS), the company that first pioneered online hotel booking in 1994.
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Occupancy for the First Five Months of 2005 at 80.5%, Up 4.5% from Same Period Last Year; But No New Hotel Jobs. By most accounts, tourism in New York City is booming -- from restaurants to local attractions to hotels. Revenue is up, visitor numbers are higher and even business travel has begun a comeback.
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The multi-million dollar renovation of The Ritz-Carlton, Bahrain Hotel & Spa is halfway toward its completion date of November 1, 2005. With less than 100 days until the re-opening, the hotel’s Guidance Team and employees recently celebrated the halfway completion with the raising of the one-tonne Ritz-Carlton Club spiral staircase from the lobby level to the sixth floor.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: July 26, 2005
Egypt's tourism industry will suffer a short-term blow in the wake of the Sharm el-Sheik attacks but will bounce back quickly, the nation's tourism minister said Sunday. A leading financial analyst, however, predicted that Saturday's attacks, which killed 88 people, could cost the industry -- Egypt's No. 1 source of foreign currency exchange -- up to $2 billion during the current fiscal year, which began July 1. The fallout has already started.
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The UK hotel industry was holding steady shortly before the bomb attacks on London, with new figures showing occupancy levels in June were static, whilst room rate and productivity saw modest but healthy increases, according to from PKF (UK) LLP hotel consultancy services. PKF's report, published today, shows London hotel occupancy rose 1% to 82.5% during June. Average room rate was up by 4.5% to £114.84 and rooms yield increased by 5.5% to £94.71.
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Chosen from over 600 hotels across Europe, Middle East & Africa, InterContinental Doha has been awarded as an outstanding performer, winning an award for Middle East & Africa - General Manager of the Year.
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Hotel minibars are evolving into ministores as innkeepers find more creative ways to generate in-room revenue. Minibars have "gone beyond traditional food and peanuts and liquor," said John Fox, a senior vice president of PKF Consulting, all in a continuing search for "anything to make a dollar."
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Contrary to the news media, Jolie Ville Movenpick Resort & Casino has thank fully not been affected by the bomb blast, apart from some shattered windows which will be repaired over the next 2 days or so. All in all 48 room had broken windows and guests were relocated to other rooms.
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The rapid expansion of tourism and real estate markets in the UAE in recent years have been fuelled by a growing number of mixed-use development projects, incorporating hotel projects. Although Dubai has more than 370 hotels and serviced apartments, the hotel occupancy index revealed that Dubai ranked first in 2004, according to a report by Deloitte.
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Hotel Chain,' in its fourth annual ranking of the world's top hotels and airlines for business travelers, to be published in its September issue. Global Finance also names Marriott the best hotel chain in North America and Latin America.
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InterContinental Hotels Group Opens More Hotels than Any Other International Hotel Company in Asia Pacific
InterContinental Hotels Group today announced that by the end of July, it would have opened eight new hotels, adding a total of more than 2,500 rooms in sought-after locales in key destinations in Asia Pacific
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Good news for lenders. According to a new survey, fewer hoteliers are making late payments on their loans. The number of hotel loan deficiencies fell by 22% in 2004, according to a PKF Hospitality Research study, "Trends in the Hotel Industry." It was the first reduction in loan deficiencies since 1996. The study looked at 1,000 properties that reported their 2003 and 2004 interest expense.
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First Half 2005 Chinese Outbound Market Delivered Whopping 15 Million Trips, An Increase of 9.6% over 2004
With Chinese travel booming, tourism bodies are keenly monitoring the Chinese outbound market globally. Industry estimates of this massive market conservatively expect 100 million Chinese outbound travelers by 2020, each spending USD$175 per day
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The eagerly-awaited Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) marketing briefing for the fiscal year 2005-2006 was held here at the SOFITEL Central Plaza Hotel on July 18.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: July 25, 2005
The World Tourism Organization (WTO) Secretary-General Francesco Frangialli said he was “shocked and horrified” by the terrorist attack in the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh on Saturday, the worst in Egypt since 1981.
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The acquisition of Louvre Hotels by Starwood Capital Group might position Starwood Hotels & Resorts in Second Place in the Ranking of Hotel Groups in France and in Europe
The investment company, Starwood Capital Group LLC has acquired all the assets of the Taittinger Group, which included Louvre Hotels. It has also associated itself with Lehman Brothers for the acquisition of the Le Méridien Group. The hotel operating company, Starwood Hotels & Resorts, the sister company of Starwood Capital, finds itself at the head of a portfolio that boosts it from 31st place to 2nd place in hotel groups located in France.
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Yeoh Siew Hoon sticks her neck out by suggesting her theory as to why Hong Kong hotels can get away with high rates while Singapore hotels struggle to raise prices
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According to the latest edition of the WTO World Tourism Barometer, worldwide tourism earnings grew by an extraordinary 10.3%, a rate practically equal to that of international tourist arrivals which increased last year by 10.7%.
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In August 2005 Helsinki will become the only city in the world to have hosted the Athletics World Championships twice. As the city prepares to welcome 3,000 teams from over 200 countries for an event packed into 10 days, we look at how the Helsinki hotel market has faired over recent years as well as the potential gains it stands to make in 2005.
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Throughout 2005, the Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International (HSMAI) will present a comprehensive line-up of industry events and programs, delivering educational sessions and strategy conferences as well as business-to-business forums for buyers and suppliers of hospitality, travel and tourism. Following is the current schedule of events for the rest of 2005 and into early 2006.
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The illustrious Raffles Hotel has been described as the Grand Old Lady of the East. And what a fitting title that is. Built in 1887, many identify it with the old-world charm and grandeur of Singapore's colonial past.
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With a rise in RevPAR from 0.5% to 0.7% in June, hoteliers along the French coast have seen a better beginning to the summer season than last year.
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Yogi Hutsen, President & Chief Executive Officer of Coastal Hotel Group has named Peter LaFemina as Chief Financial Officer. LaFemina, a veteran hospitality finance executive, oversees all corporate finance functions and provides strategic direction for the boutique hospitality management company. Together with the appointment last fall of Ed Schwitzky as Senior Vice President, Sales & Marketing, LaFemina's hiring bolsters the new Coastal Hotel Group senior leadership team.
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School's Center for Hospitality Research extends global reach The International Hotel and Restaurant Association (IH&RA) has become a corporate member of The Center for Hospitality Research (CHR), a unit of the Cornell University School of Hotel Administration.
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Latest Sales Part of Starwood's Target to Sell $500 Million Worth of Assets. Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE:HOT) announced today that it has completed the sale of Chicago's landmark Raphael Hotel to Miami-based developer Crescent Heights. The 172-room Raphael Hotel, one of Starwood's non-branded assets, was sold for more than $21 million.
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The secluded and tranquil island resort of One&Only Kanuhura, in the northeastern part of Lhaviyani Atoll, Maldives, will reopen with a fresh look in mid-October 2005 following a four-month refurbishment.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: July 23, 2005
Multiple explosions struck the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheik on the southern tip of the Sinai Peninsula early Saturday, targeting a hotel and killing at least 62 people, witnesses and police said. The Ghazala Gardens Hotel and the Moevenpick Hotel were the targets there, one witness said
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: July 22, 2005
Starwood Capital Group (SCG) is to buy champagne house Taittinger together with its 44% stake in Societe du Louvre, owner of the luxury Concorde hotel chain and Envergure, Europe’s second biggest budget hotel chain.
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Colony Capital's forte lies in trading low-priced real estate for sizeable profits. The American investment firm that snapped up Raffles Holdings' hotel business in a surprise deal on Monday may not be buying the hotels for keeps, if its stated strategy is anything to go by.
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Technology continues to grow in importance for small business travelers (SBTs). Almost half of SBTs book their hotel accommodations using the hotel’s web site, and 38 percent indicated that a hotel’s technology and Internet capabilities were a consideration when booking, reported the American Small Business Travelers Alliance (ASBTA), which recently completed its first comprehensive online travel survey of current and prospective members.
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InterContinental Hotels Group, announced today that it honored hardwork, dedication to quality and the outstanding overall efforts of its senior management team at the annual Middle East and Africa region’s General Manager Conference. Held this year in Cairo, the annual event is hosted to unify the entire senior management team from all of the group’s properties in the region, and to honor amazing achievements.
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The Leading Hotels of the World, Ltd. Launches New Luxury Destination Club: The Leading Residences of the World
New venture offers year round concierge service, accommodations in villas, private residences, apartments at legendary hotels worldwide; insurance policy backing refund promise unique among destination clubs The Leading Hotels of the World, Ltd. today announced the launch of The Leading Residences of the World (LRW), a luxury destination club that offers a new level of elite vacation experiences in luxurious residences located around the world.
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Building on a trend established last year, full-service and higher-tier hotels have experienced strong gains in occupancy and revenue this year as the return of the business traveler collides with what analysts contend is limited growth in room supply, particularly in downtown urban markets.
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China has revalued its currency, the yuan, for the first time in a decade, in a move that could placate criticism from abroad, especially the US. The new rules scrap the yuan's peg to the dollar, and tie it to a basket of currencies, the central bank said. In effect, this strengthens the yuan by 2.1%, to 8.11 to the dollar. Malaysia has also scrapped its currency's link with the dollar
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Hotel fees and surcharges on corporate meetings will hit record levels this year, analysts said, and buyers can expect charges for every service, from moving boxes to master folio transmission. Buyers are protecting themselves through more diligent contract negotiations and working with preferred vendors to ensure all charges are enumerated beforehand. By Corrie Dosh, BTNonline
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InterContinental Hotels Group appoints Susan Morgan, Vice President, Franchise Food & Beverage, North America
Based in Atlanta, Morgan is responsible for the development of food and beverage programs to support the brand images of Crowne Plaza, Hotel Indigo, Holiday Inn, Holiday Inn Express, Staybridge Suites and Candlewood Suites.
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Choice Hotels International, Inc. (NYSE:CHH) reinforces it’s commitment to increasing minority hotel ownership with the launch of the Choice Hotels African American Owners Alliance (CHAAOA) and the Choice Hotels Hispanic Owners and Managers Alliance (CHHOMA)
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Boston's hotel market and its suburban counterparts are expected to see greater overall growth next year compared to this year, according to a Pinnacle Advisory Group report released Tuesday.
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This month Accor opens Sofitel on Renmin Square Xian, the third hotel in the historical Renmin Square compound that also includes the Grand Mercure on Renmin Square and Mercure on Renmin Square hotels, the Sofitel Convention Centre on Renmin Square and Grand Theatre.
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China is set to become the world’s biggest tourist destination within a decade or two—and a major new source of visitors to the rest of the world as well. China is emerging as a leader in world tourism, with the flow of tourists both in and out of the vast country increasing at a spectacular rate. It already dominates tourism in Asia—as the most popular destination and the main source of visitors to other countries in the region—but its impact is now also being felt much further afield.
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Bliss Continues to Grow with Spas Set to Debut at W Hotels in Chicago, Los Angeles and Dallas Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. continues its expansion of Bliss Spas with the debut of its first West Coast Spa, Bliss San Francisco at the W San Francisco Hotel.
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Backed by the Tourist and Convention Authority, key players in Monaco’s Business Tourism industry have pooled their skills to create an exclusive offering under the name "Monaco Mee+ings".
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: July 21, 2005
Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, the world’s fifth-wealthiest man, has revealed plans to float hotel and media assets worth more than $2 billion (£1.4 billion) in Dubai and London over the next two years.
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Financial crises, several epidemics, and the September 11 terrorism incident have played merry hell with Hong Kong's travel industry in the last eight years. The mainland's booming economy, however, has brought a new lease of life to the hotel sector in the territory, highlighted by new luxury hotel developments. Franz Donhauser, general manager for the past three and a half years of Pacific Place's Island Shangri-La, can tell you all about the resurgence in Hong Kong's hotel industry.
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Recent sales failed to boost prices of other hotels. Property analysts have sounded a note of caution as Raffles Holdings' billion-dollar sale of its hotel business fanned hopes yesterday of a swift upward valuation for Singapore hotels. As hoteliers and investors feel elated over the deal, analysts said the sale - priced at 64 per cent above net tangible assets - could be just a one-off transaction.
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Real estate advisor HVS International has confirmed London’s upscale hotels have seen a fall in occupancy rates since the 7 July bombings. Operating data from 28,000 hotel rooms in the capital, collated daily by monitoring company The Bench, shows weeknight (Mon-Thurs) occupancy during 11-14 July 2005 slipped by around 5%-6% year-on-year.
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Business travelers may be overpaying for their hotel rooms by a half-billion dollars a year, the result of mistakes in billing. "These mistakes don't occasionally happen — they regularly happen," says George Hansen, CEO of Wichita-based Corporate Lodging Consultants, which negotiates hotel rates for about 270 companies. In reviewing the hotel bills of a major client over a recent 12-month period, Hansen's firm found 11.6% billed incorrectly.
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Host Marriott Corp., the largest U.S. upscale hotel owner, on Wednesday reported a strong rise in second-quarter earnings, bolstered by gains from the sale of some assets.
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The opening of InterContinental Financial Street Beijing marks the establishment of the first InterContinental hotel in Beijing and the first international premium hotel in the new civic and financial hub known as the Financial Street in Beijing. InterContinental Financial Street Beijing is a newly completed and stylish hotel, sophisticatedly designed and furnished with a strong appeal to discerning guests. The hotel is the latest addition to InterContinental Hotels Group's Greater China portfolio, which now stands at 48 operating hotels.
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Kate Simpson, a hospitality industry executive with management experience in New York, Miami and Europe, has been named general manager of the Millennium UN Plaza Hotel, one of the flagship properties of Millennium Hotels and Resorts.
More... [757 views]
InterContinental Hotels Group Offers Rooms at 'Any Hotel, Anywhere' InterContinental Hotels Group [NYSE: IHG; London (ADRs)] (IHG), the world's largest and most global hotel company, today began offering members of its customer loyalty program, Priority Club Rewards, the opportunity to stay at "any hotel, anywhere."
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Larry Winston, 40, vice president of sales for Carlson Hotels Worldwide, passed away unexpectedly over the weekend.
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Australia participates for the first time in the fifth edition of the International Hospitality Forum
Mr. Ramzi Moayata, Director of AusTrade in Amman, declared that Australia will participate for the first time in the fifth edition of the International Hospitality Forum 2005. The event, co-organized by Hospitality Services, Lebanon and Events Unlimited, Jordan, will take place from 20 to 22 September at Amman International Exhibition.
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The Meetings Industry Association’s (MIA) annual careers week, known as ’MIA Openhouse’ will again take place this year during National Meetings Week, which is being staged between 3rd- 7th October. All of the MIA’s UK wide members, including hotels, conference centres and meeting planners, will be encouraged to open their doors to students from local schools and colleges to learn more about pursuing a career within the industry.
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WORLDHOTELS, one of the world’s leading global sales, marketing and distribution companies for the hotel industry, recently announced the launch of an innovative new training scheme for the staff and management of its nearly 500 member hotels worldwide. The pioneering training programme, known as WORLDHOTELS.training, will give members access to the most up-to-date expertise in vital commercial areas such as sales, marketing, distribution and revenue and yield management, knowledge not usually made available to independent hotels or small hotel groups.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: July 20, 2005
Colony says it is committed to grow the brands following the takeover but observers are divided. The fate of Singapore’s homegrown global hotel management company Raffles International Hotels & Resorts, and its two brands Raffles and Swissotel, will be in Los Angeles-based Colony Capital’s hands following Monday’s announcement of the sale by Raffles Holdings of its 41 hotels, including Singapore icon Raffles Hotel, to Colony. By Raini Hamdi, Editor, TTG Asia
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With the ever increasing proliferation of distribution channels that today’s Revenue Managers have to keep track of, the last thing they need is to have the job of “trainer” added to their to-do list. Yet investing a little time and energy in helping your frontline staff understand the fundamental principles of Revenue Management will help ensure that their actions will be supportive of the overall plan. By Doug Kennedy, The Douglas Kennedy Co.
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New York City leading US in capital market and trading environment; Greatest demand diversity. “Low interest rates and extreme compression of interest rate spreads remain a primary driver of investment for leveraged buyers,” said Arthur Adler, managing director and CEO-Americas for Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels.
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As most corporate travel managers focus on driving online booking adoption and reducing transaction costs, the concept of "high-touch" travel, whether based on price, reservation complexity or level of customer personalization, is experiencing a cultural shift. With e-fulfilled or "no-touch" transactions becoming the industry norm and a baseline for determining transaction processing services necessary to complete a reservation, some travel managers and agency executives said any agent-assisted transaction now is defined as high-touch in light of increasingly automated fulfillment.
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After three consecutive years of declining profitability, the European hotel industry has started to recover lost ground. According to the Annual Profitability HotelBenchmark Survey by Deloitte hotels across Continental Europe reported 7% growth in profit per available room in 2004. On average hotels generated an additional €1,000 profit per available room in 2004 to reach €15,000 per available room. This compares to €14,000 in 2003.
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I have to confess. I have succumbed. I got a Blackberry. Despite my declaring I wouldn’t, despite my sincerest desire to be free of it, I have caved in. Let me tell you what did it. By Yeoh Siew Hoon
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Pelican System announces the addition of 6 support languages, including Spanish, French, German, Korean, Chinese and Japanese. Language plays a significant issue in the hospitality industry. Many hotels serve global markets where there is no guarantee that all can understand English.
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Taxes Projected to Rise 5 Percent. Based on historical economic patterns, property taxes for U.S. hotels are expected to increase significantly for at least the next two years. The revenue and profit recovery currently underway within the lodging industry will drive up the property values calculated by municipal appraisers during their upcoming reassessments. These assessments serve as the basis for taxation. The preceding observations come from an analysis of the data collected for the 2005 edition of Trends in the Hotel Industry published by PKF Hospitality Research (PKF-HR), an affiliate of PKF Consulting.
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Think your company can master search marketing and conduct your SEO/SEM campaigns in-house? If so, you're in the majority. According to a 2005 survey by Jupiter Media and WebSourced, 54% of companies handle their PPC management and SEO internally. This statistic is supported by a 2004 SEMPO study, stating that 52% of advertisers said they would manage 100% of their 2005 spending on both paid inclusion and organic SEO in-house. By Heather Lloyd-Martin, MarketingProfs.com
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The Landmark Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong has officially announced that it will open at the end of August 2005. The hotel, located in Hong Kong’s premier shopping and commercial district, will offer 113 of the largest guestrooms and suites in Hong Kong, designed by Peter Remedios, with an average size of over 540 square feet .
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WORLDHOTELS’ Member Stamford Hotels and Resorts To Host Leading Business and Political Figures for Forbes Global CEO Conference
The three-day conference, which opens in Sydney on August 30, has attracted a range of high-calibre speakers and delegates. These include the former Mayor of New York Rudolph Giuliani, Prime Minister of Australia John Howard, Chairman of the Shui On Group in Hong Kong Vincent Lo, Chairman of the Bank of East Asia Sir David Li, Chairman of the Board of Management for BMW Helmut Panke, and Hugh Morgon, President of the Business Council of Australia.
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The Malta Tourism Authority’s destination website VisitMalta.com
registered a record 215,062 visitors, or 7,168 daily, during the month
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Luxe Worldwide Hotels is growing its impressive collection of deluxe, independent hotels and resorts across the globe. Recently the Hotel Albergo Cesàri in Rome, the Astoria Hotel in Barcelona, Spain, and the Abbey Court Hotel in London have joined the Luxe portfolio, which includes more than 200 hotels in 27 countries.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: July 19, 2005
Is a well-shaken martini any better in Copenhagen, Mumbai or Los Angeles? If you're at one of the world's best hotels bars, it's always good.
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Literally every Destination Marketing Organization is under duress. Budgets have been slashed, resources and staff diminished, mandates of more with less to the echo of irritable stakeholders, "What have you done for me lately?" The public trough and trust is no longer bubbling and rushing along – it is barely moist. Unexpected and warranted Executive departures, fiscal malfeasance, Convention Center Bonds defeated, dissension in the Hospitality community – these types of articles lead the news. By John R. Hendrie, CEO, Hospitality Performance, Inc.
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One of the most taken-for-granted hotel amenities is the wake-up call. I've never considered it a perk, but I do hate fiddling with alarm clocks. It's much easier to call the front desk clerks and have them get me out of bed. The system has never failed me, but that doesn't seem to be the case for everyone. By Megg Mueller Schulte, USA Today
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In the midst of the peak summer travel season, the American Society of Travel Agents (ASTA) reports that travel spending continues its upward trend. Orlando, Las Vegas and New York City have kept the top spots for domestic destinations that they have held for the past four years, and London tops the international list.
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Disposable toothbrushes, toothpastes and sleepers, which used to be symbols of convenience and comfort in luxury hotels, will be phased out in Beijing's star-rated hotels in a bid to save resources.
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The Government has decided to expedite the process of allocating land for 40 new five-star hotels in Delhi in expectation of huge tourist influx during the 2010 Commonwealth Games.
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The ‘World of Accor’ hotel expo held at the Sofitel Wentworth Sydney this week saw over 750 agents, inbound operators and corporate clients visit exhibitors from Accor’s hotels and resorts across the globe.
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Conrad Hotels, the luxury brand of the Hilton Family, has signed a management agreement with the Bahamas based RAV Bahamas Limited, a subsidiary of The Capo Group, to operate and manage Conrad's first hotel in the Caribbean, a luxurious 250 room hotel, spa and casino resort, located on the island of Bimini.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: July 18, 2005
Singapore's iconic 117-year-old Raffles Hotel has been sold, along with 40 other hotels and properties worldwide to U.S.-based investment fund Colony Capital LLC for 1.72 billion Singapore dollars (US$1 billion; euro846 million), its former parent Raffles Holdings Ltd. said Monday.
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Hear Me Out: Talking & Listening to Your Current Guests May Be The Best Way To Get More Of Them Through the Door
According to conventional wisdom, the best way to get new customers is to go out and advertise to the consumers that you do not currently have. Guess what? It costs 3 to 5 times more to attract a new guest than it does to encourage a current customer to 1. Come more often, 2. Spend more money, 3. Or, increase their party size By Rick Hendrie, President & CEO of Remarkable Branding
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Hotels are investing in new technologies and furniture to appeal to business travelers, who are hitting the road again in greater numbers after the lull in travel following the 2001 terrorist attacks. "The (hospitality) industry is coming out of a recession and becoming more competitive up and down the ladder, from the (upmarket) hotels such as the Four Seasons to the limited-service hotels," said Jerry Westenhaver, general manager of the Sacramento Hyatt Regency hotel.
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Daniel P. Weadock, who rose from an accounts payable clerk at the ITT Corporation to lead its Sheraton hotels unit, died on Tuesday at a Boston hospital of injuries from an automobile accident in Maine. He was 66 and made his home in Concord, Mass.
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Hilton Group Plc, the operator of Hilton hotels outside the U.S., plans to sell its Sydney hotel, which opened last Friday after a 2 1/2-year refurbishment, as it focuses on managing rather than owning property.
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Rumors are rampant that Brad Pitt, George Clooney and night club creator Rande Gerber (also known as Mr. Cindy Crawford) have hooked up to build a Las Vegas hotel.
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Lodgian, Inc. one of the nation’s largest independent owners and operators of full-service hotels, today announced that Edward J. Rohling, age 50, will join the company July 15 as president. He will report to W. Thomas Parrington, who will remain as chief executive officer and a member of Lodgian’s board of directors.
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Rusty Parrot Lodge & Spa and La Casa Que Canta Take Top HonorsSeveral members of Small Luxury Hotels of the World took top honors as Travel + Leisure Magazine, America’s utmost authority on world travel, released their 10th Annual World’s Best Survey. Both Rusty Parrot Lodge & Spa in Jackson, Wyoming and La Casa Que Canta in Zihuatanejo, Mexico were voted #1 in their respective categories of “Continental U.S.” and “Mexico/Central and South America.”
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Ninety-six percent of corporate marketing executives utilize events in their marketing mix and 93% view the importance of event marketing to be constant or increasing, according to EventView `05/`06, the fourth annual study of face-to-face marketing trends sponsored by The George P. Johnson Company (GPJ) and the MPI Foundation. Additionally, more than 50% of survey respondents report the role of event marketing as a "lead tactic" or a "vital component" of the marketing mix.
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Conrad Hotels, the luxury brand of the Hilton Family,has signed a management agreement with the Bahamas based RAV Bahamas Limited, a subsidiary of The Capo Group, to operate and manage Conrad's first hotel in the Caribbean, a luxurious 250 room hotel, spa and casino resort, located on the island of Bimini.
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Renovation, renewal, and restoration of the hotel began in early May, and will continue until late 2006.The New York municipal Landmarks Preservation Commission yesterday approved Yitzhak Tshuva’s detailed plan for preserving, renovating, and rezoning the Plaza Hotel in Manhattan to a luxury apartment building and shopping center.
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Luxotels – An exclusive new GDS Reservation Service that meets the requirements of today’s expanding on-line luxury market
Great Hotels Organisation has recently launched Luxotels, the exclusive GDS reservation service that provides essential elements to give four and five star hotels a powerful e-distribution edge over their competitors. There is no doubt that people are spending more money on-line with luxury products being one of the fastest growing areas.
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Lodging Econometrics (LE), the Industry Authority for Hotel Real Estate, has released for the first time, its supply growth forecast for 2007 in its mid-year report to the lodging industry. Additionally, LE revised its forecast for supply growth in both '05 and '06 after reviewing over 3,000 project records in the Development Pipeline with individual Developers and re-verifying anticipated start and completion dates with various Brand Managers.
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Stockholm - Floating hotels and hostels dotting the waters around the 14 islands that make up Stockholm offer an alternative, cheap place to stay to the hordes of travellers who visit this seaside capital each year. "These boat hotels and youth hostels are very picturesque and nice, and offer a slightly different hotel experience that especially foreign tourists seem to appreciate," Goeran Granhed, an economist with the Swedish Hotel and Restaurant Association, said.
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The Radisson SAS Resort, Aqaba, is running an amusement programme during the Summer for children from the nearby SOS Children Village . The resort will open its doors once a month throughout the summer period to give the children the opportunity to enjoy the facilities such as the swimming pool, beach and special kids’ club.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: July 15, 2005
Luxury lodging outfit Four Seasons Hotels has benefited from its leadership position at the high end of the hospitality industry. However, its recent results have been less than stellar, in Standard & Poor's view, as weakness at properties in the key European region has been compounded by softness within important customer categories, such as group business and certain leisure-travel market segments By William Mack, Business Times Online
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Whether you call it the Internet or an electronic channel, it’s still an inexpensive and effective means of promoting your hotel. There are some simple tactics which promote success in web marketing. Don’t be fooled by those huge numbers of “hits” on your site. The true measure of your site’s success is the number of reservations it generates. By: Neil Salerno, Hotel Marketing Coach – July 2005
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At 11 a.m. today, Mamdoh Kiriakos will welcome the Sydney Hilton's first guests in 2 1/2- years, following an A$200 million ($150 million) refurbishment of a hotel once labeled an "embarrassment to the city.'' Gone are the 1970s pebble facade, dark foyer and twin car- ramps that former Lord Mayor Frank Sartor lambasted for being "ugly as sin'' and an "embarrassment'' to Sydney. In its place is a 43-story luxury hotel with a light-filled lobby, 577 feng shui-inspired rooms, the city's biggest gym and Australia's largest hotel conference center.
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Marriott International Inc, the largest U.S. hotel operator, on Thursday reported a quarterly profit, as an upswing in travel drove room rates and occupancy higher.
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The first steel-frame skyscraper was erected in Chicago 120 years ago, and no city has a greater concentration of elevated architectural landmarks. Harry Cobb, a founding partner in the New York firm of Pei Cobb Freed & Partners, has been designing high rises for 50 years, but few have given him greater satisfaction than the Hyatt Center. "I've waited all my life to build in Chicago and add my piece to that incomparable urban fabric," he says.
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Sydney Convention and Visitors Bureau has clocked up another year of strong bid wins, securing 35 meetings for the city during 2004-05. The wins reflect an impressive bid strike rate of 71 per cent for the SCVB.Meetings secured by the SCVB during 2004-05 include important international events such as the 2500-delegate International Federation of Surveyors Congress to be held in 2010 and the massive 13,250-delegate Amway Asia incentive meeting held in January this year.
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What to do with a faded 75-year-old hotel with small bedrooms and shared bathrooms? One approach would be to gut the interior and combine rooms to make them bigger and install a bathroom in each one. But that would reduce the number of rooms available for rent and require a nightly rate near $200, the average that prevails in New York, or even higher.
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Hilton International and Emerson Pacific Inc. today signed an agreement for Hilton to manage its first Hilton Worldwide Resort in Korea, the Hilton Namhae Golf & Spa Resort. Scheduled to open in 2007, the 120-villa resort is located 290 kilometres south of the capital on a scenic island peninsular that overlooks the Straits of Korea.
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While tourism in areas such as Sri Lanka and Phuket in Thailand suffered major blows, Bali has enjoyed a revival. The island lies more than a thousand miles away from Aceh, the area of Indonesia hit hardest by the tsunami. Overseas arrivals on the temple-studded island have increased more than six per cent in the first six months of this year to around 700,000 from the same period last year.
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Doubletree(R) Hotels is bringing the power of an advertising agency, marketing firm and printing house into one handy, online toolkit for its portfolio of more than 150 properties across North America.
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Hits $8 Million in reservations three days in July. Marking a more than $1 million increase from its 2004 record reservations day, Choice Hotels International boasted three days this month with over $8 million in reservations through the CRS: Wednesday, July 6; Friday, July 8; and Monday, July 11, which is the new record-holding day with just over $8.1 million in reservations.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: July 14, 2005
London hoteliers have been accused of hiking prices on Thursday 7 July in order to capitalise on the need for accommodation by those stranded in the city following the tragic events earlier in the day. The daily survey of 90 four- and five-star hotels conducted by The Bench demonstrates that upscale hotels in London achieved an average room rate of £148 last Thursday (7 July) compared with £149 on Wednesday, £147 on Tuesday and £143 on Monday. Their occupancy on Thursday night was 84%, a drop from 93% on Wednesday night, 89% on Tuesday and 81% on Monday.
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The big question on everyone's lips these days is not about Hilton's hotels, but the effect one Paris Hilton has had on the brand itself. Has she helped? Has she hurt? What's the deal with her, anyway? So let me begin by explaining that Paris Hilton has had no effect on the Hilton brand at all. I can say this with utmost confidence for the following reasons:
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Business travelers may be overpaying for their hotel rooms by a half-billion dollars a year, the result of mistakes in billing. "These mistakes don't occasionally happen — they regularly happen," says George Hansen, CEO of Wichita-based Corporate Lodging Consultants, which negotiates hotel rates for about 270 companies. In reviewing the hotel bills of a major client over a recent 12-month period, Hansen's firm found 11.6% billed incorrectly. By Gary Stoller, USA TODAY
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Alex Kyriakidis, Global head of Tourism, Hospitality and Leisure at Deloitte, says: "While it is too early to predict the full impact on tourism of Thursday's terrorism attacks, increasingly, the recovery period post terrorist attacks is getting shorter. London has enjoyed record levels of visitors for the year to April 2005, up nearly 10% over the last year. Thursday's attacks will cause a slow-down in that growth, but there should be every confidence in London's recovery as a world class tourism destination.
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Donald Trump broke ground Tuesday on a luxury hotel-condominium designed to be the tallest residential building on the Las Vegas Strip, and promised a second identical tower nearby.
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Domina Hotels & Resorts brand continues its expansion in Egypt with the opening of Domina Nuweiba Elaria Hotel & Resort, Nuweiba.
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Australians can expect to pay up to A$40 ($44.48) more to stay at a domestic hotel as greater numbers of international tourists push prices up, tourism operators said yesterday. But industry executives have warned against building more hotels, saying bumping up room rates would put Australian hotels more on par with their international counterparts.
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The country's first chain motel opened its doors on Thursday, offering motorists 85 kilometers down the Moscow-Kiev highway a bed, an en -suite bathroom and high-speed Internet -- all for roughly $ 80. Whether Russian drivers are willing to fork over that amount for a room outside Naro-Fominsk should help decide the fate of the 11 Douglas Motels planned for the country's main highways by the end of 2006.
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As vice president she directed all marketing and communications strategies for the company, including brand management, advertising, the website, publications, events, partner communications, employee communications, and public relations.
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Newly Developed Hotels Open Across the Country. Choice Hotels announces the opening of these newly developed Comfort Suites, Comfort Inn and Sleep Inn brand hotels.
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From A New Island Resort To A 265 Acre Country Estate Luxury Prevails. Small Luxury Hotels of the World has added five new member hotels in The Americas region to its global portfolio, bringing the luxury hotel brand’s membership to more than 330 hotels in 58 countries around the world.
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This prestigious Award is dedicated to those who wish to achieve excellence in the hospitality industry and aim to provide outstanding services to the client whose demands are never ending. Having such awards would also be an encouragement for all hotels to provide even higher standards and exceptional efforts among participants and stimulate all hotels to maintain more creativity.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: July 13, 2005
Mark Orwoll of Travel + Leisure magazine shares a sneak peek at this year's best in travel. Learn more about some of the 2005 winners
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PKF Study Finds Hotel Food and Beverage Recovery Improving but behind Room Revenue Growth; Expense Controls Help Profits Grow
While U.S. hotels have enjoyed a strong increase in room revenue during the current recovery period, growth in hotel food and beverage sales, while improving, lacked the same kind of sizzle, according to a recent study by a leading hospitality consultant. Fortunately, tight cost controls by management have enabled food and beverage profitability to keep pace with the profit growth of other operating departments.
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Gone are the days when companies could to sit back and let job applicants do all the chasing. Chris Mumford of HVS Executive Search looks at the need for companies to actively woo candidates. The world of human resources has changed. Attracting the best talent, and the means to do it, is becoming essential for any hotel as Chris Mumford, managing director of HVS Executive Search, explains. By Christopher Mumford, HVS International
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Boutique hotels are marketed as a departure from impersonal, stale chain hotels. But boutiques are sometimes criticized as being all fluff and no substance. At the same time, many major hotel companies are garnering the best of boutiques and, in some cases, introducing boutique-style hotels, like InterContinental Hotels Group's Hotel Indigo brand.
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Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc (NYSE: HOT) continues its aggressive expansion momentum in China with the signing of two new hotels : Four Points by Sheraton Changshu and Four Points by Sheraton Shanghai, Pudong.
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For exotica with luxury in Asia, it is hard to beat the Amansara in Siem Reap, an enclave of refinement close to the glorious temples of Angkor. Like all Amanresorts hotels, it is very expensive. But if you are going to see Angkor only once, what the heck. As you would expect for the price, you get attentive service: there are five staff members for every guest and the hotel's guides take guests to the temples on routes not used by tour buses. Amansara was built in the 1960's as Prince Sihanouk's guesthouse.
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“Sumahan on the water” a newly restored nineteenth century Ottoman distillery opened its doors as a hotel in May 2005. Sumahan on the water is a rare example of thoughtful, historical transformation in Istanbul. “Suma” is the word for unadulterated spirit.
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Concierges at an ever-growing number of deluxe and upper upscale hotels are working with senior-level business travelers' office support staffs in advance of checkin in an effort to provide more comprehensive, personalized service. By establishing these behind-the-scenes relationships with secretaries and administrative assistants, concierges are better able to ensure that the executive's stay goes smoothly and that any special needs, whether business or personal, are met.
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The issue of hotel ratings is a complex one for Internet travelers. Every website is free to create its own rating systems, and those rankings will vary. For example, a four-star hotel on Orbitz may be a three-star on Hotels.com.
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The InterContinental Dubai is once again delighted to announce its association with the Dubai Sweet Summer Surprises week. The DSS has been in operation for seven years now and once again the sweet week was a success.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: July 12, 2005
When there’s a line out the door, full-service restaurant operators may be tempted to shorten meal durations to speed table turns. A new study from the Cornell Center for Hospitality Research warns that strategies for shortening dining duration must be approached with care. Based on interviews and surveys of 270 people, Cornell researchers Breffni Noone and Sheryl Kimes found that guests’ satisfaction is strongly tied to their perception of the meal’s pace.
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Getting your resume read and not put in the delete folder requires effective communication. By Mark Keith, HVS Executive Search
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Fitness expert Jim Kaese shares his favorite hotels for the fitness-minded business traveler.
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That's the conventional wisdom for the rest of the year regarding large hotel companies and casino operators, which -- Thursday's events notwithstanding -- have been riding robust cyclical recoveries that should yield solid second-quarter results. Business and leisure travelers continue to check into hotels, keeping occupancy levels high and enabling hoteliers to lift room rates and bolster profits. And with the supply of new hotel rooms expected to remain low over the next couple of years, room rates should continue to rise.
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Internet searches are overtaking personal recommendations as the preferred means of obtaining travel information. Word-of-mouth advertising has long been considered the benchmark of a product or service recommendation. But in the travel business, at least, the Internet may be changing that
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One of the world’s top five business schools, London Business School, has presented its 2005 Entrepreneurship Award to Banyan Tree Hotels & Resorts. The luxury resort operator said the award was in recognition of its success as a leading hotel and leisure brand, in its short period of operation, and its demonstration of innovation that was at the heart of entrepreneurship.
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Property experts predict 2005 could be the hottest year on record for the sale of UK hotels, with an unprecedented £2 billion worth of such assets up for sale currently and more than £1bn worth of deals already concluded this year.
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Mandarin Oriental, Tokyo, the luxury Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group’s first property in Japan is located in the historic Nihonbashi district. The deluxe 179-room hotel is under construction in the Nihonbashi Mitsui Tower, owned by Mitsui Fudosan Co., Ltd, and has a direct bridge link to the stately Mitsui Honkan landmark, a Registered Important Cultural Property that was erected in 1929.
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Expecting Average Occupancy of 90% in the October to March Season. Conventions, conferences, visits by NRIs and extended stay by business travellers have pushed hotel occupancies up in all major cities. Average room occupancies have been over 80 percent in Bangalore, 77 percent in Hyderabad and New Delhi and over 70 percent in Mumbai and Chennai.
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All Seasons Legian has been developed out of the former Bali Dwira Hotel. The resort enjoys a prime location between the popular Kuta and Seminyak shopping and entertainment areas and is only a short stroll from the ocean. The hotel has been launched after a multi-million dollar renovation that includes new rooms and an upgrade of the pool and garden areas.
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The rate at which new hotels are opening suggests that investors are very confident that the booming economy will continue indefinitely.
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André Boersma and Hector de Galardas Named to General Manager Positions with Kerzner's One&Only Resorts
Kerzner International Limited, has announced the appointment of André Boersma as Senior Vice President and General Manager of One&Only Ocean Club, the Bahamian resort that is part of One&Only Resorts collection. Also, Kerzner announced the appointment of Hector de Galard as General Manager of One&Only Le Touessrok, the Mauritius resort that is part of the One&Only Resorts collection.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: July 11, 2005
Following last week's bombings in London the World Travel & Tourism Council Crisis Committee was convened to discuss the events and the potential repercussion on Travel & Tourism in the UK and elsewhere. The Committee commended the highly efficient reaction of the rescue services and underscored the seriousness with which the UK authorities had prepared for such an event. The Committee unanimously agreed that early indications showed that the impact on the UK’s Travel & Tourism industry would be limited.
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Forget the global village, Yeoh Siew Hoon says that the entire world is a kampong: connected, compacted and condensed
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NEW-GENERATION Holiday Inn hotels are popping up in the region, helping to change the perception of the brand as a cookie-cutter with a look harking back to hotel design in the seventies. One good example is the newly-opened Holiday Inn on Ploenchit Road, Bangkok’s central business district. This is not to be confused with the other Holiday Inn on Silom Road, a good example of the typical, old-style Inn. The Silom property will soon undergo its own extensive refurbishment. By Raini Hamdi, Editor, TTG Asia
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Jarvis Hotels has been put up for sale for about £200 million. Lioncourt Capital, the consortium of Irish property developers that owns the group, has appointed IBI Corporate Finance to advise it on an auction after approaches from potential buyers of the business.
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The cancellations came as Central London retailers braced themselves for a rapid slowdown in trading — Oxford Street was deserted in the wake of the attacks yesterday. Still suffering from a lack of high-spending American tourists since September 11, 2001, as well as an increase in the Congestion Charge and a slump in consumer confidence, retailers are preparing for the worst.
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Dublin is the Republic of Ireland's capital city located on the shores of the Irish Sea which separates the country from the United Kingdom. In contrast to other key European capitals, Dublin is a small city with a population of just over 1.1m inhabitants compared to London (7.4m) and Paris (11.2m). Steeped in culture and folklore, with bustling streets and friendly locals, Dublin is a popular short break destination and has been described as one of Europe's most down-to-earth capitals.
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Donald J. Trump, the Chairman and largest stockholder of Trump Entertainment Resorts, Inc. has announced today that after careful consideration of several candidates, he has appointed James B. Perry as the Chief Executive Officer of the Company. Mr. Perry has had a long and distinguished career in the casino and other businesses, including being CEO and President of Argosy Gaming Company. Perry recruited and a led a management team during a period of enormous growth, resulting in Argosy's recognition as the premier riverboat operator in the nation and the naming of Perry as the "CEO of the Year" in the gaming industry.
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From Red Bull to Rose Water, celebrate the art of bathing at Hilton Sydney. Imagine a spa experience mixed-to-order in the comfort of your own room. Well, imagine no longer – guests at Hilton Sydney can now enjoy the ultimate in-room indulgence with the hotel’s luxury Bath Master experience. From July 15, Hilton Sydney Bath Masters will create sensory bath experiences in the surroundings of a suite or room that celebrate the restorative qualities of bathing. ...
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Shangri-La Academy, the centralised employee training centre of Asia Pacific's leading luxury hotel group, Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts, will offer public enrolment starting August 2005. Students with a secondary education or above are invited to enrol online to join Shangri-La employee learners at the Beijing-based Academy.
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The Largest Contract in the Company’s History. The online travel specialist Tiscover was entrusted with the task to power the new Italian super portal www.italia.it. As winner of an international tender, Tiscover will now set about developing the national tourism platform in a cooperation with IBM and ITS (Information Technology Services S.p.A.) on behalf of the Italian government.
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HORECA, the Levant’s Largest Regional Hospitality and Food Event, ended its 12th year with 14,000 visitors and a significant increase in the number of international visitors from Syria, Jordan, UAE, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Africa.
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In his new role Benedetti will be responsible for the accounting systems, tax, treasury, strategic planning, corporate development and risk management functions of the Domina Hotel Group and its 4 brands. He will be based at Milan headquarter and will report directly to Francesco Borrello, chief executive officer of the Group.
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‘Trends and Challenges in Hospitality Management’ is the theme of the 2005 International Conference of the Hotel & Catering International Management Association (HCIMA) – the worldwide association for professionals in the hospitality, tourism and leisure industries – to be held in Sri Lanka from 4 to 6 October 2005.
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The members of the Caribbean Hotel Association (CHA) named Barbadian hotelier Peter Odle, 1st Vice President of CHA, as President-Elect of the organization. The selection took place during CHA’s Annual General Meeting at the Caribbean Hotel Industry Conference (CHIC) 2005 in Miami, Florida, last week. As President-Elect, Odle will spend the next twelve months preparing to assume the presidency of the trade association in June 2006, for a two-year term.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: July 8, 2005
This month's latest update on international executive staff movements.... Check it out!
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HCIMA Chief Executive Philippe Rossiter Welcomes London’s Success in its Bid to Host the 2012 Olympic Games
Commenting on London’s successful bid to stage the 2012 Olympic Games, the Chief Executive of the Hotel & Catering International Management Association (HCIMA), Philippe Rossiter FHCIMA (pictured), said: “London winning the bid to host the 2012 Olympics is fantastic news not just for Londoners, but for the spirit of the nation as a whole.....
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Congratulations London! the whole of Britain is celebrating following yesterday’s announcement that the city will host the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. Britain’s tourism industry was among the first to welcome the announcement proclaiming it the biggest ever opportunity for UK tourism. Industry leaders believe that between 50 –75% of Britain’s net benefit of staging the Games, measured over a 7-10 year period, will accrue through tourism. Based on Sydney’s example, the Games could be worth well over £2 billion to the visitor economy.
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Worldwide tourism results for 2005 show a continuation of the overall positive trend of 2004, with international tourist arrivals growing on average by eight per cent in the first four months, according to the recently released June edition of the WTO World Tourism Barometer. Although the excellent pace of growth of 2004 was expected to slow down gradually, for the moment rates are very similar to those seen in the second half of 2004, a year in which international tourist arrivals grew by more than 10% to an all-time record of 763 million.
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New Clocks, Amenities and Guest Room Enhancements Underway Throughout All 2,300 Hotels. With new bedding initiatives well underway at Hilton, Doubletree, Embassy Suites Hotels, Hampton, Hilton Garden Inn and Homewood Suites by Hilton hotels, the Hilton Family of Hotels is dedicated not only to providing guests with an overall incomparable sleep experience, but also progressive amenities and business tools that enable them to achieve personal fulfillment and professional success while traveling.
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Rezidor SAS Hospitality has always prioritised guest safety and the capacity to provide appropriate assistance in any situation. To further strengthen its commitment to this principle, Rezidor SAS has collaborated with the medical technology company Medtronic to provide Automated External Defibrillators (AED) in each of its hotels across the Rezidor SAS brands – Radisson SAS, Regent, Park Inn and Country Inns & Suites.
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Independent research released by Reed Travel Exhibitions this week found that 98.3% of visitors to AIME 2005 were satisfied that the event helped them to meet their business objectives. Visitor, Hosted Buyer and exhibitor surveys were conducted by independent research company, Micromex Marketing Services.
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Best Western International has been honored by the Association of Travel Marketing Executives (ATME) with a 2005 Atlas Award. The hotel chain was selected in the "Best Strategic Partnership" category for its sponsorship of NASCAR.
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Shangri-La Hotel, Beijing unveils a world of class and sophistication with Horizon Tower, a new US$50 million expansion program of exclusive elegance. The embodiment of luxury amidst a myriad of amenities and services will open its doors in late 2006.
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CHA recognized professionalism in association management of two outstanding hotel association executives - one in the small association category and one in the large association category - with the presentation of the 2005 “Association Executive of the Year Award” at the “Salute to the Stars of the Caribbean” luncheon, held June 28
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A good business hotel is more than just a place to sleep and shower. It should also be a refuge from the grind of deal-making and the challenges of navigating one's way through an unfamiliar city By Christina Valhouli, Forbes.com
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Le Méridien Hotels and Resorts has announced the promotion of Ms. Percy Ho to Development Manager – Asia Pacific. Percy will support and assist Le Méridien’s development strategies and initiatives within Asia Pacific focusing on China.
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Over the next four years, 50,000 new flat-panel, 32-inch high-definition televisions with 30-watt sound systems will be installed in the chain's full-service JW Marriott, Marriott, and Renaissance properties
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: July 7, 2005
London has been named the 2012 Games bid winner by the International Olympics Committee, beating the favourite Paris. What will happen now London has succeeded? Alex Kyriakidis, Global head of Tourism, Hospitality and Leisure at Deloitte, comments: "As proven by previous host cities, the Olympics generate opportunities across the entire job market, which in turn, would be of significant benefit for the UK economy. It would also provide a huge boost for the tourism industry.
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Russia is the largest country in the world extending over 11 time zones and two continents. Often called the bridge between Europe and Asia, this vast country covers 17.1m square kilometres - the equivalent of the USA and Europe. With immense landscapes and exciting cultures, Russia continues to be a key destination on travellers' wish lists.
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Low Interest Rates, Refinancing, and Rising Profits Are Major Factors. An improved hotel operating environment, coupled with low interest rates that encouraged debt refinancing, contributed to a 22 percent reduction in the number of hotel loan deficiencies in 2004, the first such decline since 1996.
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The region's largest hotel operator, Accor Asia Pacific, is moving to a Dynamic Pricing model and reducing fixed rate allotments in the current round of 06/07 contract negotiations. Bullish regional hotel markets - in particular Hong Kong, Sydney, Bangkok and Melbourne - are also colouring agreements and mean that room rates are set to increase by 10% in popular destinations with limited supply.
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Carlson Hotels Asia Pacific has appointed Mr. Nigel Grocock to the position of managing director of two new hotels in China, The Regent Beijing and Park Plaza Beijing Wangfujing. Commencing his new role on 4 July 2005, Mr. Grocock will be responsible for managing all aspects of the 499-room Regent Beijing, encompassing 442 guest rooms, 57 suites, four restaurants, two ballrooms, a health club, boardroom and eight meeting rooms.
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Anguillian hotelier Eustace Guishard, General Manager of the exclusive Cap Juluca Resort in Anguilla, received the highest honors of the Caribbean tourism industry today, when he was presented with the Golden Conch Award, thus becoming the 28th “Caribbean Hotelier of the Year.” Presented by the Caribbean Hotel Association (CHA), and co-sponsored by Yesawich, Pepperdine, Brown & Russell and American Express, the award was conferred at the closing Gala of the Caribbean Hotel Industry Conference (CHIC 2005), held last week at the Hyatt Regency, in Miami.
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Carlson Hotels has now acquired a 25 percent shareholding in Rezidor SAS from SAS Group in return for renegotiated commercial terms of the parties’ current Master Franchise Agreement (MFA). The MFA is the agreement between Rezidor SAS and Carlson by which Rezidor manages Carlson Hotel brands in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA). These brands have included Radisson SAS, Park Inn, Regent International Hotels and Country Inns & Suites.
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Ed Rabin, president of Hyatt Hotels Corp., announced the appointment of Larry Traxler to vice president of architecture and design. In this role, Traxler will oversee the design of new Hyatt hotels and resorts, lead renovation programs and support hotel owners in their assessment of capital expenditures needed for renovations or new hotel projects.
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More than 30 Cities and 20 US States and Territories post double-digit growth in overseas visitation in 2004
The U.S. Commerce Department reported 32 cities and 22 states/territories posted double-digit growth in visitation in 2004. Among the top 20 cities visited, New York City, Washington, Las Vegas and Chicago posted the strongest growth for 2004. Among the top 20 states/territories visited, Virginia, New York, Arizona and Utah posted the largest growth rates when comparing annual 2004 to 2003 visitation growth estimates.
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So large is the eclectic art collection of Catalan businessman Jordi Clos, who opened the Hotel Claris in Barcelona in 1992, that he has built a second hotel to house part of it, this one in Madrid. The Hotel Urban, which opened in November, is a sleek, minimalist space saved from coldness by eclectic antique artwork, much of it from the 19th century, dotting public and private spaces. The Urban's lobby resembles an office-building atrium; it features a circle of stiff chairs and does not invite loitering. But the towering sculptures from Papua New Guinea, tucked along one wall, at least make the place interesting.
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To celebrate London's Olympic win, the Sheraton Park Tower hotel, Knightsbridge, has created Olympic packages for visitors to London in 2012 for the Olympic games, from 27 July till 12 August 2012.
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Over the next 12 months, TPG plans to spend in excess of $50 million to upgrade and re-brand the existing hotels, improving their position in the marketplace and attracting higher rated business.
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The Caribbean Hotel Association (CHA) and American Express were proud to present well-deserved recognition to two outstanding individuals who exemplify excellence in the Caribbean hospitality industry with the presentation of the 2004 “Employee of the Year” and “Supervisor of the Year” awards at the ‘Salute to the Stars of the Caribbean’ luncheon, held during the Caribbean Hotel Industry Conference (CHIC 2005) at the Hyatt Regency Miami, Florida.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: July 6, 2005
Attributable to a noted Hotelier? Implored by your Dental Hygienist? Emblematic of that horrid button? Actually, this line was spoken by Dolly Parton in “Steel Magnolias” (courtesy of AHLA News Brief). Ms. Parton has that energy and charm packaged in authenticity. No matter how you might regard her many talents, she is magnetic – her self-effacing humor engaging, a huge voice from a tiny body, a smile which is infectious, and, by the way, she is in Hospitality, directing quite an empire, which entertains millions. She knows from whence she drawls. By John R. Hendrie, CEO, Hospitality Performance, Inc.
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TRI Hospitality Consulting’s May 2005 figures show a slowdown in sales growth at the UK’s hotels, with overall revenue per available room (revPAR) increasing by just 1.8% year-on-year to £56.05.
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Speakers and sponsors have been announced for Wired 2005: Asia Travel Matrix, which is happening at the Grand Copthorne Waterfront Hotel in Singapore on October 20 & 21. It's set to be the best travel technology, marketing and distribution conference staged in the region
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68% of U.S. Adults Feel More Comfortable Booking Travel with Traditional Agent Cites Recent Study. Travelers in the U.S. still find great value in travel agents for booking their leisure travel plans, according to a recent study commissioned by leading global distribution system (GDS) and subsidiary of Cendant Corp. (NYSE: CD), Galileo International. The findings from the June 2005 study show that nearly 7 out of 10 U.S. adults (68%) are more comfortable booking travel plans through a traditional travel agent.
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COMO Hotels & Resorts, set up by one of Singapore’s dynamic women, Ms Christina Ong, first made its name with design city hotels The Halkin and The Metropolitan in London. Its first resort, Parrot Cay, debuted in 1998 in the Turks and Caicos. What of Uma, the line which was introduced last year with the opening of Uma Ubud (the former Begawan Giri) in Bali and Uma Paro, Bhutan? Where does it fit? By Raini Hamdi, Editor, TTG Asia
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Of course I don't like to sound as though I'm swanking, but on the evening when I could have collected two travel journalism prizes at the Qantas Media Awards I was instead relaxing at Raffles Hotel in Singapore. By Jim Eagles, The New Zealand Harold
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Bali hoteliers are upbeat on the island’s future outlook, and are backing their optimism with a wide range of facility improvements. Investor confidence in Bali is demonstrated by on-going luxury development from the US$28 million Bulgari Hotel slated to open 58 villas in Uluwatu by year end, to the US$19 million, 176 unit Novotel Nusa Dua Golf condotel development now selling units and the 38 villa Ubud Hanging Gardens opening this month.
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With an eight kilometer ring of steel, 10,000 police on standby, watchtowers and a no-fly zone, Gleneagles Hotel is locked down under a sophisticated G-8 security operation to protect the world's most powerful men.
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The sentiment pervading Phuket hoteliers and resort operators is unmistakably subdued, with most resigned to the likelihood that only 15-20% of their 32,000 rooms would be taken by guests for the first 10 months of this year, as increasingly desperate bids to lure back tourists to this island resort have failed.
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The InterContinental Dubai announce d its participation in DSS sweet week of summer surprises as it will be aiming to beat the Guinness Record for the largest display of Rice Dumplings in the world. The InterContinental Dubai’s culinary team have joined hands with Noor Oil, DTCM and the ECG (‘Emirates Culinary Guild’) to help them beat the previous record set in Singapore at an already staggering 13,192 pieces.
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Business travel is usually far from glamorous. And sometimes it can be downright deadly.
No, we don't mean the sort of danger that can arise from ingesting too much cholesterol at business dinners or risking deep-vein thrombosis from logging too many air miles. We mean the sort of danger that comes from rocket-propelled grenade attacks, political coups, kidnappings and cholera outbreaks. By Sophia Banay, Forbes.com
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: July 5, 2005
Yeoh Siew Hoon turns up her elegant nose at shark’s fin, but suggests that it should stay on the menu
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In the realm of hotel stays, perhaps the least important item in the room, from my perspective, is the mini-bar. But for many travelers, the mini-bar is a lifesaver, providing instant access to a snack or beverage any time of day or night - at a price, of course. Have a yen for peanuts, pretzels, a beer, spirits, a cola? No need to leave your room. Just key into the mini-bar, a hotel room feature that's been around since the 1970s. By Alfred Borcover, Knight Ridder
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Many industry colleagues consider the Middle East hotel markets, and notably the GCC region, to have similar characteristics and dynamics; but is this really the case? While most GCC markets are similar in terms of their oil-based economies, and the insignificant quantity of natural resources that would support and stimulate a large amount of international leisure visitation, some destinations are just different.
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Last month's most popular Newsletter articles. Check it out....
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The board of IAHI, the Owners' Association of the InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG), has selected Eva Ferguson, vice president of operations & membership, to be its new president. Ferguson succeeds Cam C. Cooper, who is leaving the organization to relocate out-of-state.
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A visit to the Great Wall is a must for first time visitors to Beijing. I don't quite buy Chairman Mao's challenge that "you're not a real man until you get to the Great Wall" printed in most brochures offering such tours. But I had expected that a visit to this ancient structure, just one-hour's drive from Beijing, would take me through the long history of Chinese civilization and its many dynasties. I have come here expecting a journey back in time and to have some sort of spiritual experience. By Endy M. Bayuni, The Jakarta Post, Beijing Office
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Lebanon, which was known back in the 70s as the `pearl of the east` has regained its stature as not just a pearl but more of a gem on the map of tourism and AWTTE has raised the flag of its endeavor. The Arab World Travel and Tourism Exchange (AWTTE) takes place annually in October at the heart of Beirut, each year growing steadily by 20% increase in number of visitors and exhibiting space.
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Thayer Lodging Group announced it has sold the Marriott Wardman Park, Washington's largest hotel, to The JGB Companies and its partner the CIM Group for $300 million, believed to be a record price for a Washington hotel.
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For clients who want less ordinary travels, Asian agents need look no further than Bhutan, a destination in their backyard. Yet, because it has been closed off for so long, Bhutan remains mysterious to many. Raini Hamdi visits.
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Asian travellers face costlier air tickets after oil breached 60 dollars a barrel, but the impact on demand should be limited amid rapid growth in no-frills travel, industry analysts said. Airlines’ profits are expected to be hit the hardest as jet fuel costs account for an increasingly greater share of their expenses, ranging from 17-40 percent of total expenditures, aviation and tourism analysts told AFP.
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Bavaria Executive Suites - Making History in Comfort and Technology through Strategic Global Alliances with Siemens One
Bavaria Hotels International is a dynamic German hotel company, with the vision to become one of the leading specialists for profitable planning, development and management of hotels. Bavaria Executive Suites Dubai will open during the first quarter of 2006, with 2,100 designer suites strategically located within the Dubai Technology and Media Free Zone directly adjacent to the Sheikh Zayed Road.
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Cranes work day and night to complete the 365-room Kempinski resort on the Dead Sea. Nearby, a cluster of resorts is doing unprecedented business. The activity hails the emergence of Jordan's once sleepy border strip with Israel as a top regional retreat with a diverse clientele from global executives and Gulf businessmen to U.S. commanders taking a break from conflict in Iraq
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: July 4, 2005
Something must be done, but can the industry unite to save its golden goose?. A World All Stars for Tsunami Relief charity soccer match is being planned in Bangkok, tentatively on July 30 (see box), even as Phuket tourism stakeholders are urging the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) to hold a world-class celebrity event now in order to revive the destination. By Raini Hamdi, Editor, TTG Asia
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The World All Stars for Tsunami Relief charity soccer match is being organised by Octagon South-east Asia senior vice president, Mr Iqbal Maricar, and the Senior Footballers’ Association of Thailand. It is supported by the Ministry of Tourism and Sports of Thailand. Among the stars eyed are Germany’s Rudi Voeller, France’s Eric Cantona and Brazil’s Dunga Carlos.
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Former Pierre Manager Returns to Lead Historic Hotel into its 75th Year. Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces has named Heiko Kuenstle general manager of The Pierre New York, a Taj Hotel. The Pierre is delighted to welcome back an old friend, as Kuenstle spent four years earlier in his hospitality career at the landmark hotel on New York's Fifth Avenue.
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This luxurious hotel is the first Conrad opening in Japan. It combines the legendary Conrad excellence with traditional Japanese comfort and hospitality. Exemplary in its architecture and interior design, the hotel occupies the top ten floors of the Tokyo Shiodome Building, a 37-storey multi-purpose tower offering panoramic views over Hamarikyu Gardens, Rainbow Bridge and Tokyo Bay.
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The cost of impact to existing franchised hotels is substantial but it may not be crippling, based on analysis of ten years of sales results from hotels in Texas. The study, issued by Cornell’s Center for Hospitality Research (CHR), is the first to attach actual figures to the long-running discussion of impact, which occurs when a franchisor licenses a competing, same-brand hotel in a market where it already has franchisees.
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Hotels at Gatwick and Olympia are among the 18 UK and Ireland properties that Hilton Group has today put on the market. The other sixteen are as follows: Aberdeen (Treetops), Basingstoke, Belfast, Bristol, Bromsgrove, Coventry, Dartford Bridge, Dunkeld House (Perthshire), Edinburgh Airport, Newbury (North and Centre), Newport, Southampton, Strathclyde, Swindon and Templepatrick (near Belfast International Airport).
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As of December 2004, the city of Rio de Janeiro had a total of approximately 17 thousand rooms distributed among 150 classified hotels1. The existing room supply has been evolving over the last 80 years, starting with the Hoel Gloria, inaugurated in 1922.
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Businesswoman Julia Hands recently unveiled the latest part of her multi-million pound investment in the Hand Picked Hotels collection, which has its headquarters in Sevenoaks, Kent.
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Gala Launch Event held at Mandarin Oriental Hotel in New York City. Corinthia Hotels International (CHI), a Malta-based company and one of the fastest growing hospitality chains in Europe, launched its brand for the first time in the US/North American market
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In a survey conducted during the two public days of the International Travel Expo Hong Kong this year, which was just ended on 12th June this year in Hong Kong Convention & Exhibition Centre, 86.2% of the respondents have made overnight leisure trips in the past twelve months, and 21.5% of them have made four or more such trips in the same period or 7.1% more than the finding in a similar survey last year.
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Global Hospitality Newsletter: July 1, 2005
This month, Mary Gostelow - the only writer who compiles global lists of 'ten bests' - look at stunning views from rooftops.
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Global hotel group Le Meridien Hotels & Resorts continues its worldwide expansion, with 21 new properties located throughout Europe, the Americas, Asia Pacific, the Middle East and Africa currently in the pipeline to open during 2005 and beyond. This expansion follows on from the 10 new hotels opened during 2004.
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Leisure travel is expected to be robust this summer. Unfortunately for vacationers, so are hotel rates. Some forecasters predict an average 4.5% hotel price increase this summer over last, though resort rates during prime periods could soar 20%.
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Singapore has emerged as a leading retail destination in a study conducted by Euromonitor, which compared the retail prices of eight countries in Asia Pacific and the Middle East, including Dubai.
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In a move to align their efforts and promote the interests of the travel industry with a unified agenda, two leading trade groups announced a powerful new strategic partnership to implement a coordinated approach to government action.
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With its booming economy, foreign companies are proliferating their presence in China—where a market much different from that in the United States is yielding a new set of challenges for corporate travel managers. Yet, loosened regulation in such sectors as airline, booking and reservations and banking and credit card are making the country more open to competition among corporate travel suppliers and cooperation with travel buyers.
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JAL Hotels Co., Ltd., which operates the Nikko Hotels International group of luxury international hotels and Hotel JAL City, a mid-priced chain of hotels for business travelers in Japan, will open five Asia/Pacific hotels this summer; four in Japan.
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Pegasus Solutions, Inc. announced that it has reached a mutual agreement with InterContinental Hotels Group to discontinue the use of the PegasusCentral Property Management System (PMS). The PMS product will no longer be used in the Holiday Inn Express properties currently using the system, and there will be no new installations.
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Ehotelier.com now provides RSS news feeds for free. Feeds offer an easy way to keep up to date with all the latest international hospitality news. They automatically update as stories are added, flagging up what's new as it breaks. And if you operate a website, you can add eHotelier.com Hospitality News to your Website, for free.
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