Article Summary:

From the desks of the Hotel News Now editorial staff:

  • Hong Kong government aims to revive tourism
  • Low- to no-growth environment to dominate Q3
  • Marriott plans to continue to grow in Canada
  • More indie hotels soft-brand or close
  • Guest feedback important to luxury hotel

Primary Category: 5 Things to Know

Secondary Categories: News

Hong Kong government aims to revive tourism: The government in Hong Kong is planning to offer subsidies for airfare and hotels “to help revive tourism in a city that’s been roiled by protests the past few months,” Bloomberg reports from Hong Kong newspaper HKO1.

The government will give out subsidies of 120 Hong Kong dollars ($15.30) per air ticket and HK$100 ($12.75) a night for hotel rooms.

“The anti-government protests that have weighed on airlines, tourism and other industries have pushed Hong Kong into recession, according to Chief Executive Carrie Lam,” the news outlet reports.

Low- to no-growth environment to dominate Q3: Analysts usually want to hear about what will spark growth for public companies on earnings calls, but that’s not expected to happen on third-quarter earnings calls, HNN’s Sean McCracken writes.

The industry is currently in a low- to no-growth environment, which will likely be the topic of conversation on most companies’ earnings calls.

C. Patrick Scholes, managing director for lodging, leisure and gaming equity research at SunTrust Robinson Humphrey, said he doesn’t see anything changing the industry’s current trajectory.

“I struggle with trying to find that catalyst,” he said. “If there is, it’s going to be something out of the control of (hotel) companies. I don’t know what that stimulus will be, especially with Congress and the executive office having bigger fish to fry.”

Marriott plans to continue to grow in Canada: Marriott International has a good foothold in Canada, but the company has plans to grow more in the country’s large cities and secondary and tertiary markets, HNN contributor Paul Heney writes.

Diane Mayer, VP and global brand leader for Residence Inn, TownePlace Suites, Marriott Executive Apartments and Protea Hotels, said Canada is important for Marriott’s growth.

“I think there’s a lot of opportunity in Canada that has not been tapped into yet,” she said. “Obviously, our roots are in the United States, and we want to leverage that from an awareness perspective. There’s so much travel that goes back and forth between the two countries that it makes sense for us to have a strong presence here. And when we look at both our extended-stay hotel brands and our growth in general, we have very, very solid growth in the pipeline in Canada.”

More indie hotels join brands or close: As a result of increased competition, independent hotels are turning to the big brands or closing, The New York Times reports.

Data from STR, parent company of HNN, shows that two-thirds of all hotels were independent 30 years ago, but today, less than 40% “are independently owned and run,” the news outlet reports.

Independents are disappearing because they are being acquired by the large brands or joining them as soft brands for the marketing power.

“Accor had 3,600 hotels and 14 brands in 2013. Now, through acquisitions and investments in other lodging companies, it now has nearly 5,000 hotels under 39 different brands,” according to the news outlet. “The chain IHG was also one of the first to the trend, buying the boutique hotel company Kimpton in 2015.”

Guest feedback important to luxury hotel: The design of a luxury hotel is important to guests and a hotel’s overall performance, but guest feedback is critical, Business Insider reports.

The news outlet interviewed Christophe Thomas, GM of the SLS Beverly Hills, who said the hotel “capitalizes on feedback” to “stay at the top.”

"Every guest who stays at the property receives a survey asking for their feedback. All the guest feedback is reviewed seriously on a daily basis," he told the news outlet. "At the same time, we love to connect with our guests, so we, myself and my director of operations, are constantly listening to our team on the floor in real time."

Compiled by Danielle Hess.

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Headline: 5 things to know: 22 October 2019

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Article Time: 10:40:00 AM