Hoteliers in London are undoubtedly excited about the prospects of the 2012 Olympics being held in their backyards, but they’re not looking at the single event as an end-all-be-all proposition, reports HotelNewsNow.com’s Jeff Higley.
After all, London has operated at nearly 90% occupancy for most of this summer. And besides the Olympics in late July and early August, it will host The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in early June 2012 and the Paralympics in late August and early September 2012.
Still, managing inventory and rate could be a challenge. Average daily rate in Atlanta and Sydney jumped nearly 80% and 90%, respectively, during the Olympics, according to STR Global, a sister company of HotelNewsNow.com. Athens and Beijing had ADR increases in the 250% range. Konstanze Auernheimer, director of marketing and analysis for STR Global, said one of the challenges for London is to avoid the negativity that comes with such large ADR increases.
Acquiring the Golden Tulip brand has been a “passport” to an expansion of midmarket properties in France and overseas for the Louvre Hotels Group, according to President Pierre-Frédéric Roulot, writes HotelNewsNow.com foreign correspondent Tamara Thiessen.
During the next five years, a concerted strategy of expanding its brands worldwide will see 100 openings a year. The key focus is on emerging economies, with 16 hotels already earmarked in India and 28 in Brazil.
So far the group has added 4,000 rooms to its stable with new properties in France, the Ukraine, Thailand, Tunisia, Muscat, Oman, and Saudi Arabia.
The steady performance of Chile’s economy through the global downturn has provided a lift to Santiago’s hotel sector, reports HotelNewsNow.com’s Shawn Turner. Chile’s estimated annual real growth rate in gross domestic product increased by 5.2% in 2010, according to the Central Bank of Chile.
“The past two years (in Santiago) have shown more and more demand,” said Tom Potter, area VP, South America for Hilton Worldwide. “It’s becoming a stronger destination for the leisure market. There’s a good business environment and a strong economy.”
Year-to-date through July, Santiago’s occupancy increased by 19% to 71.2% while average daily rate grew at an 11.4% clip to US$156.50 and revenue per available room jumped 32.5% to US$111.50, according to data compiled by STR Global.
Kimpton Hotels and Restaurants will raise another US$200-million acquisition fund this fall, according to the San Francisco Business Times. It will be the third such fund the hotel company has raised from college endowments.
Kimpton’s previous fund, the US$202-million Kimpton Hospitality Partners II equity fund raised in April 2008, sat quietly for more than two years while the worst of the recession raged. Kimpton started spending it in October 2010 and has about US$70 million of it left to spend.
Priceline’s chief executive said Tuesday that Google’s ambitions in the online travel market might be complicated by regulatory concerns, as the Internet search giant comes under increasing antitrust scrutiny, according to MarketWatch.
Priceline CEO Jeffery Boyd noted during remarks made at a technology conference in New York that Google's narrowed, so-called vertical search efforts such as travel are under “an enormous legal cloud,” as Google is subjected to increased regulatory scrutiny.
Mountain View, California-based Google is under antitrust review by both the U.S. Federal Trade Commission and the European Commission. Rivals have argued the company has used its popular search engine to limit competition.
Compiled by Patrick Mayock.