Check in! – latest hotel highlights from across EMEA

The Blue Swan Daily brings you a round up of some of the latest hotel news from across Europe, Middle East and Africa.

  • Mandarin Oriental announces new hotel and residences in Tel Aviv
  • IHG will bring its Kimpton brand in Barcelona in Feb-2020
  • Radisson to debut its own brand in Ethiopia as it adds fourth property in country
  • Premier Inn’s parent plans to eliminate unnecessary single-use plastic by 2025
  • CityHub advances its guest communication as direct messaging increasingly replaces email as the communication channel of choice for its guests
  • Latest industry news and developments

Mandarin Oriental announces new hotel and residences in Tel Aviv

Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group has announced that it will manage a new hotel and residential project in Tel Aviv, which is scheduled to open at the end of 2023. The Group will be the first luxury hospitality brand to enter the city. The property will have a waterfront location overlooking one of the city’s pristine Mediterranean beaches, located within one of the city’s most exclusive residential areas. The hotel will have 225 rooms, including 44 suites, with most accommodation offering vistas of the Mediterranean and the Tel Aviv skyline. There will be five restaurants and bars serving a variety of cuisines and a range of flexible meeting facilities including an elegant ballroom. The 230 Residences at Mandarin Oriental will provide a range of dedicated facilities, as well as access to all the hotel’s amenities.


IHG will bring its Kimpton brand in Barcelona in Feb-2020

InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) has confirmed the arrival of its boutique luxury brand, Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants, in the Spanish market. The Kimpton Vividora Hotel will open in Barcelona in Feb-2020, located in the famous Gothic Quarter. The property, in the heart of Barcelona’s cultural and historical epicentre, will offer 156 guest rooms and three restaurants and bars, including a rooftop bar, Terraza de Vivi, which features a pool with sun loungers and affords expansive views of the city centre.


Radisson to debut its own brand in Ethiopia as it adds fourth property in country

Radisson Hotel Group has confirmed the signing of the Radisson Hotel Bahir Dar, located in the North East of Addis Ababa, its first Radisson branded hotel in Ethiopia, but the Group’s fourth hotel in the country. This achievement brings Radisson Hotel Group’s African portfolio to almost 100 hotels in operation and under development. The Radisson Hotel Bahir Dar will be located on the shores of Lake Tana, Ethiopia’s largest lake. Bahir Dar serves as the capital of the Amhara region in Ethiopia and is a well-known, memorable city to the north of the country. The fully renovated, converted 125-room hotel will comprise of a variety of room types, from Standard to King rooms and Presidential Suites. Alongside tourist demand, Bahir Dar is aiming to become a key MICE destination.


Premier Inn’s parent plans to eliminate unnecessary single-use plastic by 2025

Whitbread, the owner of the Premier Inn hotel chain, has outlined its ambition to eliminate the use of unnecessary single-use plastics by 2025. To achieve the ambitious target Whitbread says it is carrying out a root and branch review of plastic and packaging across its complete supply chain. To achieve its commitment, believed to be among the most far-reaching in the hotel industry to date, it aims to work closely with its suppliers to forensically map out plastic usage and find alternatives to unnecessary single-use items. Whitbread says that once realised, the move will mean the removal of hundreds of millions of pieces of unnecessary single-use plastic. These will include consumer-facing products, such as sauce sachets but also behind-the-scenes plastics such as food and textile packaging.


CityHub advances its guest communication as direct messaging increasingly replaces email as the communication channel of choice for its guests

Technology-driven hotel group, CityHub, has partnered with Bookboost to advance its guest communication platform as part of its smart hotel strategy to drive deeper connections with guests. The lifestyle economy hotel brand is building out its tech offer to provide a more sophisticated hotel stay experience utilising AI for automated customer support and location-sharing technology to deliver more personalised experiences. Sharing the aim to create a global network of smart hotels, Bookboost will facilitate CityHub with the new guest messaging technologies to deliver more efficient and personalised guest services. Bookboost will guest messaging solutions using artificial intelligence to generate automated replies to web visitor enquiries. CityHub will also benefit from the ability to send personalised messages and offers to guests via SMS, Facebook Messenger, Whatsapp, Web Messenger, iOS and Android App integration. CityHub is currently operating two hotels in Amsterdam and Rotterdam, with 50 and 126 hubs in each property respectively, but in the near future plans to expand into a variety of major European cities.


News briefs

  • After undergoing a multi-million pound refurbishment, the Grosvenor Hotel in London, operated by glh Hotels, will open its doors on 10-Dec-2019 as the all-new Amba Hotel Grosvenor. This will be the third hotel in the Amba Hotels portfolio, which includes the Amba Hotel Charing Cross and the Amba Hotel Marble Arch. These upper 4-star hotels in iconic central London locations have been designed to deliver a modern experience whilst bringing to life the character of the properties.
  • Hotel group The Hoxton describes itself as a series of open-house hotels and is now adopting an open check in and out policy that allows guests to arrive and depart at any time. This free service has been trialled in some of its markets since the start of this year, but will now be adopted throughout its portfolio. The service is available to all guests that book on its website 72 hours before their stay, where they will be provided a selection of check-in and check-out times they can select from.
  • Latest Oct-2019 data from benchmarking specialist STR shows hotels in the Middle East reported mixed performance results, hotels in Africa posted mostly positive results, while Europe’s hotel industry reported positive results in the three key performance metrics year-on-year. In the Middle East occupancy rose +6.5% to 67.6%, average daily rate (ADR) fell -3.9% to USD143.62 and revenue per available room (RevPAR) grew +2.3% to USD97.07. In Africa occupancy declined -0.4% to 65.8%, ADR grew +1.8% to USD109.61 and RevPAR increased +1.4% to USD72.14. In Europe occupancy was up +0.2% to 76.8%, ADR increased+0.8% to EUR115.15 and RevPAR was up +1.1% to EUR88.40.
  • InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) has opened a fourth voco property in the UK, its second in Oxford. The 181-room Oxford Spires property, located alongside the River Thames and on University College Oxford grounds, has been re-branded under IHG’s newest upscale brand following its refurbishment.
  • The five-star Corinthia Palace Hotel & Spa has become the first property in Malta to be invited into Signature’s Hotels & Resorts Collection. The 147-room hotel is located in the heart of the island of Malta, adjacent to the Presidential Palace.
  • The new 259-room Courtyard Bucharest Floreasca has implemented ASSA ABLOY Global Solutions’ advanced security access platforms. The system allows the property to offer guests both seamless and secure access to their guestrooms using VingCard Signature RFID and VingCard Flex door locks.