AS part of its $1 billion Holiday Inn brands global relaunch programme, InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) announced the opening of the first two newly styled European Holiday Inn hotels at its EMEA conference held in April in Farnborough, England.
A total of 11 Holiday Inn and Holiday Inn Express hotels across Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA), plus 19 in the United States, have been chosen to road test the changes to the hotel brand, which includes a new logo and signage, a new arrival signature scent and sound package in an upgraded lobby area, plus refreshed guest rooms offering new bedding and a new shower experience. The first two to open in Europe are the properties at London Heathrow and Farnborough.
These will be followed by hotels in Germany, Italy, France and the UAE (Dubai).
The hotels will be fully relaunched in July. In the US, 16 are already open, and Holiday Inn hotels in Asia will follow later in the year.
The first hotels will showcase the new brand hallmarks and signage in order to gather owner and guest feedback, prior to the full global roll out, scheduled for completion by the end of 2010.
Commenting on the relaunch, CEO Andrew Cosslett of IHG told TTN, “Through the relaunch, we are reinvigorating the world’s biggest hotel brand. We conducted one of the industry’s most extensive consumer surveys, encompassing more than 100 different brands and more than 18,000 guests over the last three years.”
“One underlying thread that was common in the responses of most of the surveyed guests was that they basically sought a modern, clean, safe property with efficient, friendly service that affords a great night’s sleep.”
Speaking on group’s plans, Cosslett said that IHG has 1,600 hotels in the pipeline. Out of these, 1,077 will be Holiday Inn and Holiday Inn Express hotels, 62 will be Interncontinental Hotels & Resorts, 100 Crown Plazas, 50 Hotel Indigos and the remaining will be Staybridge Suites and Candlewood Suites.
By Faiyaz Hardwarewala
TTN is the most established trade publication in the Middle East distributed on a controlled circulation basis to members of the travel and tourism industry.
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