Best Western Hotels & Resorts has introduced two
boutique brands to its portfolio: Sadie Hotel for the upscale segment and Aiden
Hotel for upper-midscale.
The brands are aimed at conversion properties as opposed to
Best Western has already been playing in the boutique space
with its Vib and Glo boutique brands, as well as independent hotel collection
brands BW Premier Collection and BW Signature Collection.
One difference Sadie and Aiden have from their Vib and Glo
antecedents, however, appears to be the speed at which Best Western will be
able to grow the brands.
“Both Sadie Hotel and Aiden Hotel present the
opportunity for independent hoteliers or developers with branded hotels to
reposition their property in a unique way, taking advantage of our
cost-effective, turnkey and customized design and renovation program,”
Best Western president and CEO David Kong stated in the company’s media
announcement. “A dedicated onboarding team will ensure these repositioned
hotels are quickly integrated with Best Western’s powerful revenue engines
intended to drive a fast ramp-up in business.”
The move to quickly scale builds on an existing growth trend
at Best Western, which less than a decade ago housed its entire company
portfolio under a single Best Western brand. Now, with the addition of Sadie
and Aiden, it has 13 separate brands.
The news also comes as Best Western wraps the voting on a
special ballot initiative to switch the company over from a nonprofit to a
for-profit business model. Best Western’s board of directors said in a letter
to members back in August that the shift “will help us to grow our scale
and funding primarily by adding and retaining more hotels, having greater
flexibility in raising capital, more closely aligning brand and hotel owner
interests, more effectively competing with other lodging companies and creating
value in the ownership interests of our members.”
The voting closed at 2 p.m. Wednesday. Kong has been vocal
in recent years about the need for hotel companies to grow their scale as a way
to retain power against online travel agencies and to keep up with players that
can grow scale quickly like Airbnb.
In terms of what Aiden and Sadie will offer to consumers, Best
Western promises unique design styles with local flair, as well as
multi-functional public areas with a cafe or bar, modern seating and mobile
Source: Business Travel News
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