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North America

Davidson, Dimension and HEI Lead in Satisfaction

Alan Woinski and Kim Woinski
September 13th, 2023 at 5:55 PM EDT

Skift Take

  • The J.D. Power 2023 North America Third-Party Hotel Management Guest Satisfaction Benchmark reveals that hotel management companies’ investments in renovations, maintenance, and staffing have led to increased guest satisfaction in areas like guest rooms and staff service.
  • The benchmark highlights that guest anticipation of needs is a crucial factor, with 82% of interactions meeting this goal. Many guests desire modern lobby designs, but only 13% of branded hotels fulfill this criterion. Additionally, there’s a demand for electric vehicle charging stations, with 19% of guests expressing interest.

The DJIA fell 70 points, the Nasdaq was up 40, the S&P 500 rose 6 points, and the 10-year treasury yield was down .02 to 4.25%. Lodging stocks were lower. VCSA traded down -9% to another all-time low, and AINC also hit a new low. AHT and SOND were both down -6%, and BHR fell -5% on the day.

According to the J.D. Power 2023 North America Third-Party Hotel Management Guest Satisfaction Benchmark, hotel management companies have started making serious investments in renovations, maintenance, and staffing, and those investments are paying off in the form of strong satisfaction scores for the quality of the guest room and staff service. Key findings of the 2023 benchmark are: Anticipation of guest needs is the most important key performance indicator for guest interactions with hotel staff. Across all third-party hotel management companies evaluated, hotel staff met that goal in 82% of guest interaction. Hotel guests seek modern and unique designs for hotel lobbies and common areas. Currently, just 13% of branded hotels evaluated are meeting these criteria. Overall, 19% of hotel guests say they need an electric vehicle (E.V.) charging station at their hotel, but only 6% say they have actually used hotel-provided E.V. charging. Davidson Hospitality Group and Dimension Hospitality ranked highest in a tie for overall guest satisfaction, each with a score of 725. This is the second consecutive year that Davidson Hospitality Group ranked highest. HEI Hotels and Resorts ranks third at 714. The benchmark evaluates guest satisfaction with branded hotels. It is based on six factors: communications and connectivity, food and beverage, guest room, hotel facilities, staff service, and value for price. 

STR reported U.S. lodging data for the week ended 9/9. U.S. hotel RevPAR was down -0.1% year over year. Group RevPAR was up 1.2%.

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Sunstone Hotel Investors gave a business update. It looks like the Maui wildfires’ impact was less bad than feared, or less of an impact than expected. August company RevPAR growth was 1.4%, giving the first two months -0.6%, which is better than expected. SHO also said they bought back 1.4 million shares at an average of $9 so far in 3Q.

According to The Real Deal, two investors took sizable losses on brand-name hotels in a northern suburb of Chicago this month. A Goldman Sachsventure got $6.6 million for the 248-room Chicago Marriott Suites Deerfield, an asset it paid $30 million for. Phoenix Development Partners sold the 301-room Hyatt Regency Deerfield for $21.5 million after buying it for $31.5 million and putting $14 million into renovations. The lower sale prices appear to reflect the hospitality market’s slow recovery from the pandemic’s blow to tourism and business travel and how acutely suburban hoteliers may feel it with assets next to corporate campuses like Deerfield’s, which some developers suggest would be better off as warehouses. 

Construction has begun on The Somm Hotel & Spa in Woodinville, WA, a 164-room, luxury full-service boutique hotel that will be soft-branded as a Marriott Autograph Collection hotel. The project is expected to open in 2025. Woodinville Hotel Partners, LLC, owns it, and Columbia Hospitality will manage it. U.S. Hotel Advisors arranged the $82 million construction loan, including a $30 million CPACE component.

MCR acquired the Canopy by Hilton Charlotte Southpark in CharlotteSouth Carolina, marking the company’s sixth hotel in North Carolina and its first Canopy by Hilton hotel. The five-story, 150-room hotel features a full-service restaurant and bar, a coffee shop, a grab-and-go market, a fitness center, a business center, and 9,000 square feet of meeting space. 

Highline Hospitality Partners has acquired the Homewood Suites by Hilton Eatontown. The 131-room, extended-stay hotel, HHP’s eleventh property, is in Eatontown, New Jersey. The all-suite hotel boasts an outdoor pool and patio area with fire pits, a grill station, multiple meeting rooms, a fitness center, and ample onsite parking. Highline Hospitality Partners selected Avion Hospitalityas the hotel’s third-party manager.

Berkadia said they led the sale of the Homewood Suites Eatontown on behalf of the seller, Jersey Shore Hotel Partners, LLC.

The Sunseeker Resort Charlotte Harbor, in Charlotte Harbor, Florida, opening its doors later this year, is now accepting reservations online and through the call center. The new-build resort boasts 785 rooms, including 189 signature suites; 60,000 square feet of meeting and event space; 20 wholly owned and branded food and beverage concepts, including 7 signature restaurants, 11 bars, and lounges, and the 25,000 square foot Harbor Yard’s Food Hall; two pools; seven retail outlets; a fitness center and spa; and the Aileron Golf Club.

Las Vegas’ Bellagio resort is undergoing a $100 million renovation. All rooms, suites, and corridors in the Spa Tower will be redone. This follows the recent renovation of its main tower’s more than 2,500 guest rooms. The Spa Tower contains 819 guestrooms and 104 suites and is ready to be revealed this coming October. Following the Spa Tower redesign in 2024, resort-wide guest room enhancements will culminate with the redesign of the Bellagio Tower’s approximately 400 suites. 

Civeo Corporation inked a deal to sell its McClelland Lake Lodge assets in Alberta, Canada, to an undisclosed US-based mining project for around C$49 million/$36 million. The transaction is expected to be closed before January 31, 2024. 

Dave and Kara Hartnett, owners of the Mainsail Motel and Cottages inHampton Beach, New Hampshire, are retiring, selling their historic beach hotel to 29-year-old Christian Smith. The Hartnetts have made several improvements to the Mainsail since taking over its 40 hotel rooms and 19 cottages ten years ago.

Construction crews started work on a project to update and revamp the entry to Hotel 43 in Downtown Boise, Idaho. The $2.3 million project will revamp the entry to the boutique hotel, update interior finishes, revamp a conference room, and more. Earlier this year, Block 22, owner of the property, received approval from the City of Boise to add a new entry vestibule to the entryway and a ramp and updating exterior finishes. The Latitude meeting room will also see updates, including a new bar and finishes. The lobby will see changes, as well as the hotel rooms. The hotel remains open despite the disruptions, and the plan is to complete work by December. The attached restaurant is not impacted.

The Hotel Monteleone in New Orleans, Louisiana, is creating new traditions with its brand-new Iberville Tower. The new suites and rooms are part of a two-year, multi-million dollar renovation. They have taken about 90 rooms and converted them into 45 suites to make up the Iberville Tower. 

Developer JDS is planning a mixed-use tower in Miami, Florida. The Dolce & Gabbana-branded project will include 259 fully-furnished residential units, a 5-star hotel, a health and fitness center, multiple food and beverage spaces, and 273 parking spaces. The project will be completed in 2027.

The SureStay Plus by Best Western Fremont I-69 has opened in Fremont, Indiana. The hotel features 93 guestrooms, a breakfast room, and an outdoor patio with a BBQ grilling area.

Sonnenblick-Eichner Company arranged $21 million of fixed-rate, first mortgage financing for the Cotton Court Hotel in Lubbock, Texas. The five-year, fixed-rate loan is non-recourse and was funded by a Wall Street investment bank. The loan is interest-only for the entire term at an interest rate of 7.6%. The 165-room boutique hotel includes 4,489 square feet of indoor meeting space, 20,772 square feet of secure interior courtyard area featuring a pool, pool bar, outdoor fireplaces, fire pits with seating throughout, and an onsite restaurant and bar.

In collaboration with Hotel Properties of Panama Inc., Hyatt Hotels Corporation announced the planned expansion of the Hyatt Regency brand in the Latin America and Caribbean region with Hyatt Regency Panama City, expected to open in summer 2024. The property will be the first Hyatt Regency hotel in Panama City and the third Hyatt hotel in Panama. Hyatt Regency Panama City will offer 382 guestrooms and suites spread across two floors, a pool, gym, a variety of restaurants including a wine bar and coffee show, 20,000 square feet of meeting space including two ballrooms, an outdoor terrace, and a Hyatt Regency Broadcast Lounge. The hotel is expected to open just in time for the 2024 summer season following an extensive renovation.

Personnel Moves

Omni Hotels & Resorts appointed Vince Parrotta as its new Chief Operating Officer. He joins Omni from his previous role as the President of Hotel Operations – Americas at Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts. In this newly created position at Omni, Parrotta will oversee hotel operations and related brand and guest experience roles. 

Azul Hospitality Group announced the promotions of Alvaro Fraile to Chief Executive Officer and Mark Crisci to President of the organization. Fraile joined the company in 2021 as Chief Operating Officer. He previously held senior positions with A.C. Hotels and Marriott International. He will provide oversight for all of Azul’s hospitality-related operations. Crisci joined the company in 2014 as Chief Investment Officer. Rick Mansur, one of the company’s founders and current President and CEO, will continue with the organization as Executive Chairman, focusing on senior talent acquisition and client and partner relationships. Doug Leiber, also a founding partner at Azul, will continue his responsibilities for talent acquisition and team member retention for all levels of the organization. 

HVS Executive Search announced the appointment of Pablo Torres as Director of Executive Search for its London office, marking a significant expansion of expertise and services, particularly in Spanish-speaking regions. Based in Alicante, Spain, Pablo’s contributions have earned him recognition as one of Spain’s top 150 influential tourism professionals. His extensive network and expertise will significantly enhance HVS’s mission.

Europe Highlights

IHG Hotels & Resorts welcomed two new properties in Portugal, Convent Square Lisbon, Vignette Collection, and Casa da Companhia, Vignette Collection, to its growing luxury and lifestyle portfolio. After extensive renovations, both hotels opened this year and are the first to occupy their historical spaces. Casa da Companhia opened in March 2023 as the first Vignette Collection hotel in Europe. Occupying the space of the former headquarters of the famous Port company, Real Companhia Velha, the hotel features 40 rooms and suites, a restaurant, spa, fitness suite, heated indoor and outdoor pools, and a terrace. Built within a fully restored 13th-century Dominican Convent, Convent Square Lisbon, Vignette Collection officially opened last month as Europe’s second Vignette Collection property. The 121-room hotel offers an all-day dining experience, a fire pit, live music, an indoor plunge pool, a sauna, and a fitness room.

Alan Woinski and Kim Woinski
September 13th, 2023 at 5:55 PM EDT

Companies: Aimbridge Hospitality, Ashford Hospitality Trust, Azul Hospitality Group, Berkadia Hotels & Hospitality, Canopy by Hilton, Davidson Hospitality Group, Dimension Hospitality, HEI Hotels & Resorts, Hilton Hotels & Resorts, HVS, Hyatt Hotels Corporation, Hyatt Regency, IHG Hotels & Resorts, Marriott Hotels, Marriott International, MCR, Omni Hotels & Resorts, Sonder Holdings Inc., Sunstone Hotel Investors, Inc., Vacasa, Vignette Collection

Locations: Alberta, Chicago, Florida, Idaho, Las Vegas, Lisbon, Maui, New Jersey, New Orleans, North Carolina, Panama City, Texas, Washington State

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