February 2, 2023

Atour Goes Public to Expand Lifestyle Hotel Trend in China

Here are some excerpts from Daily Lodging Report from the past week. If you’re not…

Atour Goes Public to Expand Lifestyle Hotel Trend in China

Here are some excerpts from Daily Lodging Report from the past week. If you’re not a subscriber, you should be. Get news on hotel deals, development, stocks, and career moves. Sign up here, now.

Sunday, November 13

China-based hotel chain Atour Lifestyle Holdings made its trading debut. It raised $52 million in an IPO of 4.8 million American depositary shares offered at $11, the low end of the previously announced range. ATAT ended Friday’s session at $12.88, up 17 percent on its first trading day. (More context, below, and more on China’s hotel construction, below.)

Pathfinder Hospitality announced the grand opening of the 140-room Aloft Austin Southwest, in South Austin, Texas.

Ikenakea Hokele plans to replace an existing parking lot and vacant warehouse, in Honolulu, Hawaii, with a 240-room hotel adjacent to Aloha Tower Marketplace. The hotel will have about 31,000 square feet of meeting and flex spaces, as well as a rooftop bar and restaurant. The $128 million project still has regulatory approvals to clear. 

Skift Note: Atour offers lifestyle hotel brands, such as Atour S, Atour Hotel, Atour X, and Atour Light, and says it’s the largest upper-midscale hotel chain in China. As of September 30, Atour had opened 880 hotels, a year-on-year increase of 26 percent. Capitalizing on its lifestyle brand cred, it offers scenario-based retail brands, such as Atour Market, and private-label products.

Monday, November 14

Red Roof held its annual brand conference, telling its franchise owners that revenue for the brand from January through September 2022 rose 10 percent year over year, and revenue per available room was up 9 percent. Direct bookings were 22 percent up versus the year earlier, and revenue from its central reservation system was up 19 percent.

B.Riley lowered its price target for Braemar Hotels & Resorts to $9 from $12; on Ashford Inc. to $18 from $23 and on Ashford Hospitality Trust to $9 from $12. BHR and AHT were both down -5% while AINC was up 3%.

Skift Note: We imagine that one or two of the large hotel groups have their eyes on Red Roof as a possible acquisition. The Columbus, Ohio-based company has owned its niche in upscale economy lodging, and earlier this year surpassed 60,000 guest rooms across the United States.

Tuesday, November 15

Bloomberg published an article suggesting Fosun International Ltd. is exploring the potential for sales of most of the company’s divisions, seeking capital to repay debt. Bloomberg said Fosun is also considering strategic options for French luxury resort chain Club Med SAS and could seek a valuation of about $1.5 billion for the business in a transaction. Yet Fosun Tourism Group said they have no intention of selling Club Med. Last month Fosun reported Club Med revenue rose 145 percent year on year in the first nine months of the year. That was up 96 percent from the same period in pre-pandemic 2019.

Marriott International announced plans to expand its select service portfolio in Greater China with the expected addition of 30 hotels in the segment by the end of 2023, adding to its more than 460 properties across 67 cities.

WorldHotels announced the launch of the WorldHotels brand in Canada by introducing nine premium hotels. The properties are all owned by Prestige Hotels & Resorts

The Willard InterContinental, one of Washington, D.C.’s iconic hotels, will retain its brand. IHG Hotels & Resorts and Willard Associates have signed a 25-year management deal for the 12-story, luxury hotel with 335 guest rooms.

With the opening of its first hotel in New York City, Motel One Group presents its new lifestyle brand, The Cloud One Hotels. The announcement comes as Motel One Group reveals its best quarterly result in the company’s history. The Q3 financial results show a revenue increase of nearly 40 percent from pre-Covid (2019) to approximately $200 million. In the UK, Motel One has seen significant growth this year and has secured two new locations in London. Boasting a prime location in Downtown Manhattan, The Cloud One New York-Downtown offers 326 rooms across 28 floors, including two rooftop suites.

Skift Note: One of Fosun’s best assets most likely to recover in value is Club Med. But if no one wants its other assets at desirable prices and it starts hurting for cash because of disruption related to China’s property market crash, it might be forced to into a distressed asset sale. Bets are still against a sale, though.

Wednesday, November 16

JP Morgan projected that airline travel in the Asia Pacific region would hit two-thirds of pre-pandemic levels by the end of the year. Thailand is poised to meet its 2022 foreign arrivals target of 10 million tourists, already seeing 7.56 million visitors as of October. At the Asean Summit in Cambodia recently, the commentary was that the Southeast Asian region is looking to attract 152 million tourists by 2025 and 187 million tourists by 2030. Pre-pandemic the region was expecting 123 million foreign visitors each year before the breakout. 

Under Canvas announced the introduction of ULUM; a new, safari-inspired, outdoor resort brand that will welcome guests for stays beginning March 2023. The brand’s first location ULUM Moab, in Moab, Utah, is carefully integrated into 200 acres of desert.

Membership Collective Group Inc. announced changes to its executive leadership team. Nick Jones, CEO and Board Director of MCG, has announced his intention to transition from CEO to founder as of today.

Indies Capital Partners announced the acquisition of a 60 percent stake in PT Swiss-Belhotel International Indonesia and PT Zest Hotels International Indonesia from Ciputra Group Indonesia. Swiss-Belhotel International Holdings Limited, based in Hong Kong, will continue as the 40% shareholder of the companies. The companies will continue to be part of the Swiss-Belhotel International Group and all the hotels and projects under the management of the Companies will continue to be part of the global management and operation of the Swiss-Belhotel International Group. This is a follow-up to an investment Indies Capital previously made in Artotel Group, a leading boutique hospitality and lifestyle group in Indonesia.

Minor Hotels announced the Middle East region will see three NH Collection properties launching in 2023 with two in Dubai and one in Doha.

Football fans have booked accommodation in more than 90,000 rooms, tents, apartments, villas and portacabins on each of the peak days of the World Cup in Qatar. Organizers said at least 25,000 rooms are still available. Qatar expects 1.2 million visitors during the month-long tournament, with the peak number expected between November 24 and 28.

Skift Note: Southeast Asia may have the biggest boom of any global region over the rest of the decade. See this video from Skift Global Forum where executives from the region provide details.

Thursday, November 17

STR reported U.S. lodging data for the week ending November 12. U.S. RevPAR was up 19.4 percent, year over year. When compared with the same week in 2019, RevPAR (revenue per available room) was up 18 percent.

Hilton announced the latest addition to its luxury portfolio in the Caribbean and Latin America with the signing of the first Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts property in Costa RicaWaldorf Astoria Guanacaste. Under construction, the resort will open in late 2025 with 190 guest rooms and 25 branded residences.

In the recent China Construction Pipeline Trend Report from Lodging Econometrics, LE analysts report that China’s total hotel construction pipeline, at the close of the third quarter of 2022, stands at 3,604 projects/684,288 rooms. Cities in China with the largest pipelines, at the Q3 close, are Chengdu with 140 projects/28,208 rooms, Shanghai with 126 projects/25,308 rooms, Guangzhou with 115 projects/25,177 rooms, Hangzhou with 98 projects/20,448 rooms, and Xi’anwith 95 projects/17,176 rooms. Franchise companies topping China’s construction pipeline are led by Hilton Worldwide with 684 projects/124,987 rooms, then InterContinental Hotels Group with 445 projects/92,094 rooms, Marriott International with 385 projects/102,380 rooms, Accor with 199 projects/37,028 rooms; and Jin Jiang Holdings with 181 projects/18,249 rooms. 

Skift Note: November in the U.S. looks like a hot hotel market despite all the recession noise.