MIAMI, FL (March 2, 2011) – IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group), [LON: IHG, NYSE:IHG (ADRs)], the world's largest hotel group by number of rooms, announced that it has signed a 15-year license agreement with Shakir Investment Group for a new-build Staybridge Suites hotel, scheduled to open in late 2012 in Panama City, Panama. It will be the first Staybridge Suites property in Central America, and the second in Latin America, complementing a 31-story, 215-guestroom Staybridge Suites in Saõ Paulo, Brazil. There are more than 180 Staybridge Suites opened across the Americas, Europe and the Middle East.
Located less than two miles off the Bridge of the Americas and next to the entrance to the popular Amador Causeway, the 122-room Staybridge Suites Panama City will be in close proximity to the Figali Convention Center, the Smithsonian Institute of Tropical Research and other popular tourist destinations, fine dining restaurants and beautiful scenery.
"We are thrilled to introduce the first Staybridge Suites hotel in Central America to Panama," said Alvaro Diago, COO, IHG, Latin America and Caribbean. "We see tremendous potential for this extended-stay property with features that set it apart from other hotels in the city."
“This is the perfect time and location to build a Staybridge Suites hotel in Panama,” added Jim Anhut, Chief Development Officer, the Americas, IHG. “As the Canal is being expanded, it is estimated that an influx of families of expatriated workers will need extended-stay housing in the city. A Staybridge Suites hotel, with all the amenities it provides long term guests, is a timely addition to this area.”
The 13-story property will feature three well-designed spacious suite options (deluxe studio, one-bedroom and two-bedroom/two-bath). All suites include in-room DVD/CD players; functional, well-lit work stations with ergonomic seating; speaker phones, personal voice mail and complimentary local phone calls; and fully equipped kitchens.
Consistent with the Staybridge Suites brand, the new hotel will offer exceptional guest amenities including a deluxe complimentary daily breakfast buffet; complimentary guest laundry and workout facilities; a complimentary 24-hour business services center; a guest library with books and games; and BridgeMart®, the hotel’s 24-hour convenience store stocked with snacks, sundries, beverages and easy-to-prepare meals. The hotel also includes a fully-equipped fitness center, rooftop swimming pool, two-story underground parking and meeting space.
Guests will be invited to get comfortable in the hotel’s Great Room for evening “Sundowner” receptions three days a week that include complimentary refreshments, light appetizers and conversation.
Staybridge Suites hotels participate in IHG's guest loyalty program, Priority Club® Rewards, the industry's first and largest guest loyalty program with 56 million members. Priority Club Rewards membership is free and guests can enroll by logging on priorityclub.com, calling 1.888.211.9874 or inquiring at the front desk of this hotel or any one of IHG's more than 4,400 hotels worldwide.
The company also announced it will build a Holiday Inn in Bogotá.
The Holiday Inn Bogotá-Airport is the third signing of an IHG-flagged property in Colombia in the last six months; the other two being the InterContinental Cartagena and the Holiday Inn Cartagena. When open, it will be IHG’s eighth hotel in Colombia.
“Colombia has witnessed a remarkable turnaround in the last few years, and a dynamic economy is luring more business travelers to the country,” said Jim Anhut, Chief Development Officer, IHG, Americas. “Colombia has certainly become one of the most vibrant markets for development in Latin America and we look forward to continuing to expand our presence in the country.”
“We are excited to partner with Alianza Fiduciaria S.A. and further IHG’s growth within one of Latin America’s most compelling capitals – Bogotá,” added Alvaro Diago, COO, IHG, Latin America and Caribbean. “IHG is proud of its 50+ years of experience within Colombia’s hotel industry. Properties like this one are ushering in the future of hospitality in the country.”
The hotel will feature the new Holiday Inn sign in keeping with the $1 billion Holiday Inn relaunch, first announced in 2007. The relaunch program creates a more contemporary brand image as part of the drive to increase quality and consistency across the global portfolio. The program focuses on arrival and welcome services, as well as guestroom and guest bath comfort.
The 191-room Holiday Inn Bogotá-Airport will be part of a mixed-use complex called Centro Empresarial Arrecife, located within the vibrant neighborhood of El Salitre, one of the city’s most important and modern business districts. The Centro Empresarial Arrecife development will consist of two office towers and a hotel tower. The hotel, currently under construction, will boast four meeting rooms with a 300-person capacity as well as a restaurant, lobby bar, business center and fitness center.
“The Holiday Inn brand attracts the precise demographic we are seeking for the hotel at Centro Empresarial Arrecife,” said Juan Manuel Quijano of Alianza Fiduciaria S.A. “El Salitre has become an important financial and economic hub, and a Holiday Inn brand, known for its dependability, comfort and value, is a perfect addition to the area.”
IHG currently has five hotels in Colombia: two InterContinental, one Crowne Plaza, and two Holiday Inn Express properties. With a population of more than 44 million, improved security and a dynamic economy, Colombia has emerged as a key strategic market for Latin America. Bogotá, the capital, is the largest metropolitan city in the country and the main economic center of Colombia. A vibrant city, Bogotá is not only recognized as a centre in the region for the development of the arts but for its beautiful cathedrals, major universities, grand theaters and an array of entertainment and nightlife venues.
IHG has nearly 200 hotels in Mexico, Central and South America and the Caribbean, and has been serving Latin America for 64 years. IHG has hotels situated in nearly every key market throughout Latin America and the Caribbean.