From the desks of the Hotel News Now editorial staff:
- Inbound travel to US expected to decelerate
- Guest demand drives mesh of innovation, hotel marketing
- Hotel rates in Atlanta to triple during Super Bowl
- Cincinnati sees hotel building boom
- Another hotel in China fails hygiene inspection
Inbound travel to U.S. expected to decelerate: The U.S. Travel Association’s Travel Trends Index shows that while travel to and within the U.S. rose 3.2% in October year over year, Association’s Leading Travel Index “projects that international inbound travel will continue to decelerate through April 2019,” according to a news release. International inbound travel to the U.S. increased 2.4% year over year in October, but growth was slower than it was in September.
"A worrying trend of deceleration has taken root in the second half of the year," U.S. Travel SVP of research David Huether said in the release. "Weakening global economic conditions, combined with rising trade tensions and a strengthening dollar, will continue to spell trouble for the international segment."
Economists with the U.S. Travel Association said softening growth in inbound international travel to the U.S. “will hinder the U.S. in its efforts to recapture its share of the global international travel market,” according to the release.
Guest demand drives mesh of innovation, hotel marketing: Executives speaking at a recent Hospitality Innovation Think Tank at the recent Phocuswright Conference said figuring out a company’s wants and needs in terms of innovation is key for sales-and-marketing and revenue-management professionals to meet the needs of consumers, Hotel News Now’s Jeff Higley writes.
Before this can be done, speakers said it was important to establish what they mean by “innovation.”
“It’s important not to confuse invention with innovation,” said Jeff Senior, VP of marketing for KSL Resorts. “Innovation is change—positive change … to the degree you are managing a process that effects change in a meaningful way, faster than it would if it were to take place organically.”
He added that “innovation is rooted in empathy,” Higley writes.
“If you’re not solving the problem for somebody, then it’s not real innovation and it doesn’t really matter because it’s not going to stick,” Senior said.
Hotel rates in Atlanta to triple during Super Bowl: Data from STR’s Consulting & Analytics office shows that hotel room rates in Atlanta “are projected to triple during the three nights of Super Bowl LIII weekend,” according to a news release. STR is the parent company of HNN.
“A typical early February weekend in Atlanta will produce an average daily rate of approximately $90, but with the Super Bowl at Mercedes-Benz Stadium, ADR for the market is likely to be in the vicinity of $270,” said Blake Reiter, STR’s director of custom forecasts.
“Atlanta is a large market with an established base of demand across the transient and group segments. As such, while we do project a significant boost in occupancy for Super Bowl weekend, much of the approximate 350% projected gain in revenue per available room will be driven by ADR growth,” he added.
Atlanta will be at the top of the list in terms of the number of hotel rooms available around the Super Bowl when compared with the eight previous markets that hosted the event. “However, the market’s absolute occupancy and ADR project to be among the lowest in that group of past host markets,” the release states.
Cincinnati sees hotel building boom: Cincinnati went a long time without having a new hotel in the city, but now, “the Queen City could see about 2,500 new hotel rooms come online in the next three years,” WCPO Cincinnati reports, and city officials are considering tax incentives for two hotel projects this week, one being Vision Hospitality Group’s Kinley, a 94-room boutique hotel.
A building that was once a shoe factory is being transformed into a 130-room Cambria Suites and is located next to the Procter & Gamble headquarters.
The Cambria developer is asking for $5.2 million in tax incentives, stating that the $10 million project would create 24 permanent jobs and 150 temporary construction jobs, the news outlet reports. Vision is looking for $11.5 million in tax incentives and claims the $13 million project “would create 52 permanent jobs and 43 temporary construction jobs.”
Another hotel in China fails hygiene inspection: Luxury hotels in China were recently exposed for cleaning methods that weren’t exactly sanitary, such as housekeepers wiping down drinking glasses with used towels, the South China Morning Post reports, and an inspection of hotels in the provincial capital of Taiyuan found additional issues.
Health officials found disinfected towels stored with shoes and half-consumed snacks during an inspection on 4 December, the news outlet reports. Clean towels were also stored in the same room as rubbish bins despite regulations requiring towel cabinets not be placed with other items.
Citing reporting from the China News Service, the article states health inspectors also found a number of hotels didn’t follow rules requiring sterilization of customer utensils and did not monitor air, water, light and noise levels.
Compiled by Danielle Hess.