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Choice Hotels International opens 478 Hotels Worldwide in 2014

  • Published by Ozgur Tore

cambria washington dc

Choice Hotels International, Inc. announced opening of 478 domestic and international properties in 2014. The outlook for future growth is robust based on the 566 new domestic franchise agreements signed by the company last year. Particularly exciting about this development momentum is that 159 of the signed contracts were for new construction hotels, a more than 70-percent increase over the same period in 2013.

Among the most notable gains in 2014 are ten new construction development agreements signed with Love's Hospitality, LLC, the hotel development and management division of travel center conglomerate Love's Travel Stops & Country Stores, which operates more than 300 travel centers in 39 states, generating more than $26 billion annually. A family-owned business, in 2013 Forbes ranked Love's the 9th largest privately held company in the United States. Love's develops and manages select service and full service hotels and resorts across the country. Underscoring the great appeal of the company's different hotel brands, these multiple agreements include projects with the Comfort brand, Sleep Inn and Choice's innovative MainStay Suites & Sleep Inn dual-brand concept.

Choice Brands

Upscale business traveler brand Cambria hotels & suites continues to surge, opening five new hotels with topnotch developers in key corporate travel destinations such as Washington, D.C., White Plains, New York and Plano, Texas. This year, two more Cambria properties are scheduled to open in Manhattan in addition to the brand's flagship property in Rockville, Maryland across from Choice Hotels International Headquarters. On the development front, Choice executed several new Cambria franchise agreements, including four with institutional capital advisory firm, Fillmore Capital. Notable 2014 deal signings include leading travel destinations such as Miami, New Orleans, Nashville, and Houston.

Heightened developer interest in the refreshed Comfort Inn and Comfort Suites brands is especially evident in the brands' new construction activity. In 2014, Choice Hotels signed 70 new construction franchise agreements for the Comfort family of brands across all market types including major U.S. cities such as New York City, Austin, Philadelphia, Denver, Houston and Pittsburgh. Choice Hotels and existing Comfort franchisees have already invested more than one-quarter billion dollars in the system-wide revitalization, including the company's landmark $40 million property improvement incentive. Hotels that participated in the incentive program have now completed renovations and last year guest satisfaction for the Comfort brands was at an all-time high.

Providing guests with a whole new style of rest, the Sleep Inn brand's Designed to Dream next generation look and feel continues to attract interest from developers. The company successfully executed 38 new agreements for the new construction brand in 2014, up more than 50-percent from the year prior. The Designed to Dream new construction prototype and mandatory system-wide redesign program is fueling the brand's double digit RevPAR growth which is outpacing the midscale segment. The brand's lower development costs and efficient operating model has great appeal with both experienced hotel investors and first-time developers.

The upscale Ascend Hotel Collection, a pioneer in "soft branding" independent hotels, continues to expand. The concept, which allows hotels to maintain their autonomy while benefitting from the firepower of Choice Hotels' distribution channels and technology, is now also generating significant new construction interest from the development community. Designed-focused developers in urban markets are attracted to the Ascend Hotel Collection as a new construction alternative. In 2014, Choice Hotels Global Development executed 11 new construction agreements for the Ascend Hotel Collection, most of which are located in New York City, as well as continuing to expand the system in major markets which include Los Angeles, Dallas and Minneapolis.

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