IHG Hotels & Resorts (IHG) recently outlined its strategies to help premium portfolio owners drive hotel performance and revenue and elevate the guest experience during its first IHG Americas Premium Investors & Leadership Conference. Held May 8-10 at the voco Chicago Downtown hotel, the Conference brought together more than 500 owners, general managers, sponsors and corporate colleagues for three energizing days of networking, presentations and discussions on super-charging brand delivery and profitability.
The Conference focused on the recent successes and continued evolution of four key brands – Hotel Indigo (part of IHG’s luxury & lifestyle portfolio) and Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts, voco hotels and EVEN Hotels (among IHG’s premium portfolio).
Elie Maalouf, CEO, Americas, IHG Hotels & Resorts, said: “IHG has enjoyed a dominant position in the mainstream category while also gaining solid momentum in luxury and premium. As a global leader in these spaces, we continue to invest in strengthening our premium brands to make every dollar count for hotels and owners and build trust and confidence for our guests. Our Hotel Indigo, Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts, voco hotels and EVEN Hotels brands account for nearly 1,000 open or pipeline properties around the world. We see plenty of opportunities to introduce these compelling brands to wider audiences and create many more memorable experiences.”
Hotel Indigo: The World’s Neighborhood Hotel
Fueled by a growth pace that will see it surpass 200* open global hotels in the next three years, and a pipeline that would nearly double the size of its current estate, Hotel Indigo continues to receive a warm welcome in more neighborhoods around the world. And with a renewed focus on delivering authentic, local and personalized guest experiences, the launch of a new service program and a soon-to-come global marketing campaign, Hotel Indigo remains a bar setter in the “upper upscale lifestyle” space.
Hotel Indigo’s strength lies in its flexibility, with a concept that can range in location and build type (including new build, conversion or adaptive reuse), is efficient to operate, and integrates touches of local culture, history and flair. Just as no two neighborhoods are alike, the brand’s “Neighborhood Hotel” proposition ensures that each Hotel Indigo will feature distinct designs and experiences rich in local sights, sounds and flavors. This excitement and momentum resulted in 18 global openings in 2022 – with eight in the Americas, including its South American debut in the Galapagos Islands and three New York City properties, among them – and notable recent signings in Washington, D.C. and Panama City, Fla.
Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts: Bold Moves for Blended Travel
With 398 open hotels around the world – including a newly opened property in Ft. Myers, Fla. – and an additional 118 in the global pipeline, Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts remains the cornerstone of IHG’s premium portfolio. And as the needs of today’s travelers continue to change, the Crowne Plaza brand is evolving its design with even more flexible spaces and experiences that accommodate growing desires to blend work and leisure.
Crowne Plaza’s commitment to delivering a premium full-service hotel experience includes a new build model scalable for different markets and footprints, and prominently displayed among forthcoming openings in Wilmington, N.C. and Mexico City and Durango, Mexico. Additionally, 70 percent of the Crowne Plaza estate in the Americas has been renovated or will be renovated by 2025. Crowne Plaza hotels also will benefit from expanded field operations support, and significant investment in a multimedia campaign in the second half of the year featuring both dedicated Crowne Plaza marketing and prominent placement in IHG Masterbrand marketing.
voco hotels: Converting Speed into Growth
Introduced in 2018, voco hotels not only is IHG’s newest premium brand, but also is on track to become the fastest growing in the company’s history. With 46 open hotels in 18 countries, and another 59 in the global pipeline, voco hotels already is more than halfway to its goal of reaching 200 open or in pipeline hotels by 2028. These include the late 2022 opening of the Conference’s host Windy City hotel and newly signed properties at popular tourist destinations such as New York City’s Times Square and Pigeon Forge, Tenn.
The Conference reinforced the role of voco hotels’ soft design in its accelerated growth, namely through setting lower costs to conversion for owners and ease of integration for IHG’s commercial support and rebranding blueprint. In turn, voco hotels owners can retain critical elements of an existing hotel’s business and individuality while quickly introducing a new mix of brand hallmarks and personality. Through this model, voco The Cadence hotel in Niagara Falls opened in December 2022 within 60 days of its signing.
EVEN Hotels: “Well” on its Way to an Even Brighter Future
Fresh off its own brand evolution, EVEN Hotels is going all in on an elevated premium design and amenities that welcome wellness-minded travelers – all with an emphasis on the differing meanings of “traveling well” for each guest. Along the way, EVEN Hotels is pursuing a balance that will create healthy returns for owners as it aims to extend beyond its current lot of 23 open and 32 in pipeline global hotels.
The future of EVEN Hotels will expand upon its roots, including three guest room models with a variety of in-room fitness experiences and the introduction of the EVEN Kitchen & Bar offering with options that satisfy the tastes of both those trying to eat healthy on the road and others seeking more indulgent meals and snacks. And through a revamped prototype, EVEN Hotels aims to reduce time and costs to build and generate front- and back-of-house operational efficiencies. Guests will begin to see elements of the new EVEN Hotels across seven global properties slated for opening this year, including featured U.S. hotels in Austin, Tex. and Bozeman, Mont.