Brand extension

John Wagner George Sell Uploaded

After a recent flurry of activity in the aparthotel space, this month sees the news dominated by the extended stay hotel sector, with significant developments on both sides of the pond.

In London, two buildings in the former Think Apartments portfolio, which have been extensively remodelled, will open this year flying Marriott's Residence Inn flag, and operated by Cycas Hospitality. These properties will be followed by further 2017 openings in Aberdeen and Amsterdam, growing the brand's European portfolio from three to seven hotels. The four additions planned for 2017 will see almost 600 rooms added to the Residence Inn portfolio, and there are a further eight properties anticipated by the end of 2019.

Residence Inn is one of Marriott's strongest brands in the US, and I have often wondered why it hasn't been more widely embraced in Europe - now it looks like the tide is turning.

Over in the US, Extended Stay America has announced its ESA 2.0 five-year plan, following the completion of ESA 1.0, which involved renovating the entire 600+ property portfolio, installing a revenue management system and organising a sales force. The next phase will consist of strategic disposal of non-key assets and building new properties in rapid growth markets, particularly in the south-eats of the US.

Last week I wrote about companies introducing a minimum one-night stay - ESA has an average length of stay of 26 nights, so it's very encouraging to see strong activity at both ends of the market.


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