Choice Hotels International, Inc. (NYSE: CHH) is elevating its upscale and upper upscale hotel brands with a series of enhancements aimed at standing out in the competitive market.
Building on the expansion of its upscale hotel portfolio to 400 properties, including 19 new Ascend Hotel Collection locations and nine new Cambria Hotels, Choice Hotels is reinforcing its success. Notably, the Radisson brand has seen a significant 8% year-over-year increase in revenue per available room (RevPAR). This growth is driving Choice’s initiative to refresh and improve the guest experience across its upscale and upper upscale brands. Starting with Radisson Blu, the company plans to innovate and transform five of its eight brands within these categories, which include Cambria Hotels, Ascend Hotel Collection, Radisson, and Radisson Individuals. This strategy aims to deliver greater value to property owners and ensure repeat visits from guests.
“Radisson Blu has proven its potential and appeal among guests and owners alike as it transcends the ordinary, redefining upper upscale by blending contemporary design with warmth and an enriching environment,” said Indy Adenaw, senior vice president and general manager, upscale brands, Choice Hotels.
“The upper and upscale landscape is littered with generic hotels and Choice now has the opportunity with 400 hotels and counting, and the proven success we’ve had, to make a statement and drive even stronger returns for hotel owners and repeat stays for guests.”
Designed to remove the compromise guests and owners face between design-forward but sterile, or big box but boring, Radisson Blu promises to be the ‘Nordic Vanguard’. The brand disrupts upper upscale by blending contemporary design with warmth and an enriching environment. The full-service brand focuses on distinctive architecture, as well as amenities, brought to life through three distinct brand pillars:
- Experience/Exciting Comforts: Through subtle innovation and digital ingenuity, the brand crafts a seamless experience that envelops guests in a calming environment, fostering a sense of belonging and discovery. This approach intertwines the comfort of the familiar with the excitement of the new, making every stay memorable.
- Design/Nordic Nouveau: The Scandinavian-inspired design prioritizes comfort, distinctiveness, and warmth. Emphasizing style and purpose, the spaces are dynamic and stimulating. Creating iconic, inviting environments for unique and reliable experiences.
- Service/Curatorial Warmth: Attention to detail and professional warmth define the guest service, reflecting a passionate and welcoming approach akin to an art gallery curator. The hotel teams, confident and knowledgeable, inspires a sense of discovery, fostering an environment that is enlightening and accessible.
These three pillars will shine through work underway at the Radisson Blu Mall of America, which is undergoing a $15 million renovation to turn it into an anchor hotel for the Radisson Blu brand.
Enhancing the Guest Experience
Last year, Cambria Hotels was awarded the top upscale brand in the J.D. Power 2023 North America Hotel Guest Satisfaction Index Study. The ethos that led to that designation will be harnessed to create unique, brand-specific amenities, revamped food & beverage programs and unique Choice Privileges rewards for all five of the upscale and upper upscale brands Choice is set to redefine this year.
Committed to Being Franchisee Friendly
Earning an industry leading voluntary retention rate of 98%, owners are attracted to Choice because of its proven track record of lowering their reliance on OTAs and third-party booking platforms, leveraging AI enabled technology to provide tools that drive efficiency and profitability, and unwavering commitment to driving revenue. Owners can expect flexibility, collaboration, reliability, and innovation when working with the Radisson Blu brand, and the entire Choice upscale and upper upscale portfolio.
Continuing to Invest in Success
Choice has assembled a world-class team, with strong and proven pedigrees to lead the upscale and upper upscale brands to greater heights. In addition to Indy Adenaw, who led Sheraton’s global turnaround and launched Moxy at Marriott, segment leadership includes Alexandra Coleman, vice president, upscale brand management, who has 15+ years brand experience including at Marriott, and Patrick Curran, director of food & beverage, upscale brands, who was the executive chef at Momofuku and Riggs Washington DC. As this portfolio of brands continues its transformation, Choice has enlisted the assistance of top creative and brand agency support with Design Agency and RO New York. These two agencies have successfully launched and revitalized emerging and established brands across many industries.
Longtime investors in cutting edge technology to drive hotel performance, Choice operates at the intersection of hospitality, franchising, and technology. As a result, Choice owners and operators have access to a suite of proprietary built and customized cutting-edge cloud-based solutions, including the choiceADVANTAGE and Opera property management systems, the choiceEDGE guest reservation platform; and ChoiceMAX and iDeaS G3 mobile-friendly revenue management tools that continuously help them adapt to changing marketplace conditions using artificial intelligence and real-time data.
Across the entire upscale and upper upscale portfolio, Choice will take the momentum built through the exceptional new hotels opened in 2023, including the Cambria Hotel Burbank Airport and Mayfair Hotel in NYC, Ascend Hotel Collection, to push on performance and further its reputation as a friendly and adaptive partner to the owner and operator community.