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North America

Hilton’s New Partnership With Small Luxury Hotels of the World

Alan Woinski and Kim Woinski

February 7th, 2024


Skift Take

Hilton and Small Luxury Hotels of the World announced an exclusive strategic partnership that will welcome Hilton guests to hundreds of independently minded luxury hotels in the most sought-after destinations around the world.

The DJIA rose 156 points while Nasdaq was up 148, the S&P 500 rose 41 points and the 10-year treasury yield was up .02 to 4.11%. HLT traded up to a new high but the big mover was a plunge of -19% by SHCO. A group called GlassHouse Research released a report suggesting SHCO faces a number of issues affecting the future viability of the company and accused them of using fabricated accounting gimmicks in the past. The stock hit a new low on this. AINC also traded down to another new low, down another -8%.

Given Hilton (and Marriott’s) stock outperformance lately, the real surprise would have been if Hilton did not have a sensational earnings report. They did not disappoint with their adjusted EBITDA more than $50 million above consensus and guidance. RevPAR growth was 5.7% versus 5% consensus. In terms of guidance, they came in a bit ahead of estimates but every analyst report we read brushed that off as conservative. During 4Q, HLT repurchased 4.6 million shares for $746 million, which is more than the $684 million in 3Q and impressive given the stock keeps rising. HLT said they expect capital returns of $3 billion in 2024. That would be up about 20% from 2023. We could sense some concern over HLTstock weakness in pre-market in the early sell side reports but new highs were set as the stock performed like the champ it has been.

California’s individual hotel sales dropped 45% year over year in 2023, according to an article by CoStar. What did come as a surprise for Atlas Hospitality Group, which produced its annual year-end California Hotel Sales Survey, is that the decline wasn’t deeper given that sales were down 53% halfway through the year. The survey reported individual sales dropped from 483 in 2022 to 265 in 2023. Total dollar volume fell 56.3% to $3.75 billion. The median price per room dipped 1.08% to $150,000, but was still the second-highest median price per room that Atlas has recorded. Atlas believes the debt maturities coming due in 2024 will be a big driver of deals in California and the potential for three interest rates cuts has boosted optimism among investors. Even if rates do come down, that doesn’t mean lenders will be as active as they were before. They are concerned about their risk and capacity, trying to make sure they have enough loans that are safe. They likely won’t be on the lookout for new loans. According to Atlas, more private lenders are coming into the marketplace, and there are more requests for preferred equity because refinancing means having to bring more capital. That preferred equity comes with an interest rate of 15% to 17%, however, and that’s not sustainable.

STR reported US hotel data for the week ended 2/3. US hotel RevPAR was up 1.7% with ADR up 1.9%. Group RevPAR was up 10.3%, led by occupancy rising 8.1%.

HHM Hotels added the 347-room Crystal City Marriott to its managed portfolio. The property features a restaurant, cocktail bar, gym, and versatile meeting spaces.

According to a filing with the Texas Department of Licensing and RegulationWhitestone Hospitality plans to open an AC Hotel by Marriott in July 2025 in Irving, Texas. The $18 million, 147-room hotel will have six stories, a restaurant, rooftop bar, and over 3,000 square feet of meeting space.

As a follow-up to yesterday’s story, Baywood Hotels purchased the 100-room Residence Inn by Marriott Philadelphia Langhorne from MCR for $22.1 million. Hunter Hotel Advisors brokered the sale on behalf of MCR.

The Hilton Woodcliff Lake hotel, in Woodcliff Lake, NJ, has been sold at auction to a development group owned by Minnesota Vikings’ owner Zygi Wilfand will shut its doors on February 21. Wilf has decided to close the hotel and turn it into a redevelopment project for housing.

Hilton hotel in San Marcos, Texas has been purchased by Partners Real Estate, marking the firm’s first purchase with its latest investment fund. Partners Capital, the company’s investment arm, purchased the Hilton Garden Inn San Marcos with its Hospitality Fund I. The $25 million fund is focused on properties along the Interstate 35 corridor between Austin and San Antonio as well as high-growth markets throughout the Sunbelt. The purchase price was not disclosed for the 107-room hotel. The seller was Stonebridge Hotels.

Hilton and Small Luxury Hotels of the World announced an exclusive strategic partnership that will welcome Hilton guests to hundreds of independently minded luxury hotels in the most sought-after destinations around the world. The partnership will dramatically expand the luxury experiences offered by Hilton as unique SLH properties join the unparalleled hotels of the growing Waldorf Astoria Hotels & ResortsConrad Hotels & Resorts, and LXR Hotels & Resorts brands. The SLH community boasts 560 luxury boutique hotels spanning 90 countries.

IHG Hotels & Resorts completed the conversion, rebranding, and reopening of a new Holiday Inn Express & Suites hotel in Mountain View, California. Located in the heart of Silicon Valley, the 70-room Holiday Inn Express & Suites Mountain View Silicon Valley is owned by Krishna MV Inc.

Drury Development Corp and Drury Hotels filed a building permit for foundation work for an eight-story, 252-room Drury Plaza Hotel in downtown Lincoln, Nebraska. The full-service hotel will have an indoor pool, fitness center, restaurant, and lounge and meeting facilities.

Junius Real Estate Partners has hired JLL to sell the 297-room 21c Museum Hotel at 55 East Ontario Street in Chicago, Illinois. The property offers a lobby-level gallery space and 7,000 square feet of meeting and event spaces.

RobertDouglas secured financing for Chartwell Hospitality’s 7-story, 244-key Hilton Franklin Cool Springs in Franklin, TennesseeRobertDouglas secured roughly $38,000,000 of short-term, fixed-rate financing at highly attractive pricing from an institutional, balance sheet lender.

Braemar Hotels & Resorts Inc. has refinanced or extended almost all of its 2024 debt maturities. A total of approximately $300 million in debt, out of a total of approximately $330 million maturing in 2024, has been extended or refinanced as follows: the Company refinanced the 550-room Capital Hilton in Washington, D.C. with a new $110.6 million mortgage loan with Aareal Capital Corporation.

The Hilton La Jolla Torrey Pines remains encumbered by the original mortgage loan and the lender has provided a six-month forbearance agreement. The Company has extended the loan secured by the 142-room Pier House Resort & Spa in Key West, Florida. The Company has also extended the loan secured by the 180-room Ritz-Carlton St. Thomas in St. Thomas, USVI.

Personnel Moves

Crescent Hotels & Resorts announced the promotion of Jon Hodges to the role of Vice President of Global Sales. In his new role, Hodges will strengthen the company’s global sales strategy, propel growth, and attain corporate goals. Before joining Crescent Hotels & Resorts in 2021 as Senior Director of Luxury, TMC & Consortia SalesHodges held the position of Regional Director of Sales and Partnership Marketing at SIXTY Hotels.

Langham Hospitality Group appointed Lawrence Ng as its new senior vice president of sales and marketing, succeeding Shane Pateman, who takes up the positions of managing director of the Langham Huntington, Pasadena and regional vice president, operations of North America. Based in LHG’s Hong Kong headquarters, Ng will lead all sales and marketing work globally while also serving on LHG’s executive committee. Prior to this role, Ng held the position of vice president of sales and marketing for Greater China at Marriott International.

Hostaway has hired ex-Hotjar COO Ken Weary to support the company’s growth as it dominates the sector across North America and Europe to become the leading software provider for vacation rental and short-term rental managers. Co-founder and former COO Saber Kordestanchi will move to the role of Chief Strategy Officer, the first of its kind for the company. During Weary’s seven years at Hotjar, he oversaw all internal HR, legal, finance, and business operations.

Europe Highlights

H.I.G. Capital announced several of its affiliates have combined their hotel assets to create Ella Hotels & ResortsElla is a luxury, lifestyle, and hotel group operating a collection of sustainable, “eco-chic” resorts across Southern Europe. Following a phased development and refurbishment plan, Ella’s portfolio will comprise 13 hotels with a total of 4,500 rooms, located in five of Greece’s key tourist destinations. Ella plans to expand further into additional, established Mediterranean holiday destinations, focusing on opportunities in SpainPortugalItaly, with a target of reaching 10,000 total rooms in its portfolio. 

Alan Woinski and Kim Woinski

February 7th, 2024

Companies: Small Luxury Hotels of the World, 21c Museum Hotel, AC Hotels by Marriott, Aimbridge Hospitality, Ashford Hospitality Trust, Braemar Hotels & Resorts Inc., Chartwell Hospitality, Conrad Hotels & Resorts, Crescent Hotels & Resorts, Drury Development Corporation, HHM Hospitality, Hilton Hotels & Resorts, Holiday Inn Express, Hostaway, Hunter Hotel Advisors, IHG Hotels & Resorts, Krishna Ventures, Langham Hospitality Group, LXR Hotels & Resorts, Marriott International, MCR, Residence Inn by Marriott, Ritz-Carlton, Sotherly Hotels Inc., Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts

Locations: Austin, Chicago, Dallas, Florida Keys, Italy, Los Angeles, Nebraska, New Jersey, Philadelphia, Portugal, San Jose, Spain, St. Thomas, Tennessee, Washington DC

Photo credit: A view of a terrace at Château Le Nessay, on the Emerald Coast of Brittany, France, which is one of the hotels that’s a part of the Small Luxury Hotels Private Collection. Source: Small Luxury Hotels of the World. Small Luxury Hotels of the World

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