3 Hotel Brands to Watch

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3 Hotel Brands to Watch, Radisson Red Cape Town, meeting planning
Radisson Red Cape Town

A clever marketing campaign is the biggest in Hyatt Regency’s history, offering a fun twist on guest engagement. Also smartly targeted are Radisson’s Red and Blu brands, both of which are making inroads in Latin America. The elegant Meritage Collection adds a fifth star with the Pasea in Huntington Beach this month. For more on what else these hotel brands are up to, read on.

Hyatt Regency Branding

The Hyatt regency introduced a fresh twist this past fall with its biggest-ever marketing campaign, including partnerships with both Comedy Central and Fast Company. The latter is hosting workshops and networking events at Hyatt Regency properties and an elevator pitch contest with videos taped in Hyatt elevators; the Comedy Central connection centers around the New York Comedy Festival, which Hyatt Gold Passport sponsored. Hyatt Regency has 150 locations in more than 30 countries. Its most recent addition is a 325-room property with 15,000 sf of meeting space at the Houston Galleria.

The Grand Hyatt brand, another meetings industry mainstay, will open a new Rio de Janeiro property in early 2016, with its own private spot on Barra da Tijuca Beach. The brand has two other upcoming openings, in Abu Dhabi and Manila. The 314-room Grand Hyatt Playa del Carmen emerged last summer in the heart of Riviera Maya, with 15,000 sf of meeting space. It is the first the first Grand Hyatt in Mexico.

Radisson Blu and Red

Geared toward millennial travelers, the first Radisson Reds are coming to the Americas in 2016, to Bogota and Cali in Columbia, Campinas in Brazil and downtown Minneapolis. The 164-room Minneapolis property will be located within walking distance of the new U.S. Bank Stadium and connected to the Wells Fargo Office Tower and the stadium via the skyway. Parent company Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group plans to open 60 Radisson Red hotels globally by 2020, in locations including Brussels, Belgium; Capetown, South Africa; and Glasgow, Scotland, with the mission of creating “a uniquely engaging, personalized guest experience,” according to Javier Rosenberg, chief operating officer, Americas.

Meanwhile, the already established Radisson Blu brand is also expanding into Latin America with the conversion of an existing Radisson in Santiago, Chile, and two new hotels in Colombia, one on the island of San Andres and the other in Santa Marta. The Blu concept was created in 2009 in Europe as an evolution of the Radisson SAS brand. Just this past fall, additional Blus opened in Moldova, Slovenia, Sweden, FInland and Kenya, for a total of 233 in 60 countries.

Pacific Hospitality & Meritage Collection

Pacific Hospitality Group, known for its luxury Meritage Collection of properties—Bacara Resort & Spa, The Meritage Resort and Spa, Estancia La Jolla Hotel & Spa and Balboa Bay Resort—will kick off 2016 with the grand opening the Paséa Hotel & Spa, in Huntington Beach, CA. Most of its 250 rooms offer ocean views, and there is 34,000 sf of meeting and event space. A Balinese-inspired spa with both indoor and outdoor treatment rooms, a signature restaurant with floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the ocean, and a rooftop deck and bar complete the picture.

Pacific Hospitality has also moved beyond its California roots with the recent acquisition of the AC Hotel New Orleans Bourbon/French Quarter Area last September. “This new lifestyle brand nicely complements our luxury hotels within the Meritage Collection,” says Kory Kramer, chief investment officer. The 220-room property is located in the historic Cotton Exchange building in downtown New Orleans, and includes a 1,900-sf ballroom for groups of up to 168.

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Barbara Scofidio is Editor of Prevue and heads up the Visionary Summits, our exclusive conference series targeting senior-level meeting and incentive planners. In her 30 years in the industry, she has become known for her passion around greening meetings, growing awareness of human trafficking and promoting CSR activities as part of business events. She is currently a member of SITE's Women IN Leadership committee and the media liaison for FICP's Education Committee. She was the first member of the media ever to be invited to sit on a committee by GBTA, where she spent three years on the Groups and Meetings Committee. She has also been an active member of SITE for 30 years, chairing its Crystal Awards committee and acting as a judge. Before joining Prevue in 2014, she served as Editor of Corporate Meetings & Incentives (MeetingsNet) for more than 20 years. She has a BA in Literature/Rhetoric from Binghamton University. Barbara is based outside Boston, in Groton, Mass.