InterContinental Hotels Group, parent of the world’s largest hotel brand, this week revealed plans to launch a new midscale brand to stand beside its extended-stay Candlewood Suites before the year is out.
At its 2017 Americas Conference in Las Vegas, IHG said it expects the brand to be franchise-ready by fall, initially focusing on the U.S. market. The first hotels will begin construction in early 2018 and open in 2019. Properties will average 95-100 keys with a minimum of three stories.
The price point will be about $10-15 less than IHG’s upper-midscale Holiday Inn Express. It will compete against brands like Hilton’s new Tru by Hilton, Best Western and Choice Hotels’ Comfort Inn.
The brand will offer public spaces with a mix of seating for working or socializing, swimming pools, complimentary breakfast and a curated market for food and beverages. Guestrooms will be designed to reduce noise, and include “high- quality” mattresses and linens, and intuitive in-room climate control. There will be a mix of 220-square-foot king and 275-square-foot queen rooms featuring built-in work spaces, open closet storage with luggage shelves and smart TVs.
The properties will offer Cloud-based reservation systems, mobile check-in and check-out, and IHG Connect enhanced Wi-Fi. Rooms will also feature enhanced in-room entertainment options to allow guests to broadcast content from their smart devices on in-room TVs.
“This new brand builds on IHG’s leading position in the midscale segment alongside Holiday Inn and Holiday Inn Express,” IHG chief executive officer Richard Solomons said. “It addresses the needs of a rapidly growing and underserved segment and we believe it will shape the future of this unique midscale category.”
The brand’s name and logo will be announced later this year.