Loews Hotels & Resorts announced its new Loews Regency luxury brand in May following the opening of the reflagged 155-room Loews Regency San Francisco in the Financial District. The San Francisco property joins the Loews Regency New York, which recently debuted a $100 million renovation, as the third Loews brand.
The OE Collection also launched this past January, marrying the luxury and lifestyle hotel segments with a strong cultural edge. Scheduled to open in Q1 2016, the first OE Collection property will be the new 100-room Bisha Hotel & Residences in Toronto. Both brands provide some interesting new options for upscale meetings and incentive travel programs.
“Meetings are at the core of Loews Hotels & Resorts, and although the Loews Regency brand and OE Collection may not cater to large groups, they offer some great locations and very compelling experiences for certain group programs,” says David Wiener, senior VP of sales for Loews Hotels & Resorts.
“Intimate luxury” epitomizes the Loews Regency brand, according to Jonathan Tisch, chairman of Loews Hotels & Resorts. Tisch says that the next generation senior corporate executive is not interested in pretense—the Regency experience reflects this with more understated elegance and service.
“Loews wants to run a prestigious property that offers great services, and the term ‘intimate luxury’ really reflects that goal,” he adds. “It reflects our understanding of the guest experience for close to 75 years—it’s unpretentious and comfortable. That’s what we feel really signifies the Loews Regency brand.”
For smaller meetings, incentive programs and board retreats, the Loews Regency New York offers four different meeting rooms, and there are six specialty suites designed by four famous New York design firms, which planners can book for use as hospitality suites. Loews Regency San Francisco has six meeting spaces, including a 40th floor terrace with some of the best views in the city.
Another new development, the 400-room Loews Chicago Hotel opened in the city’s downtown core in March. The handsome modernist building, inspired by the lines of famed architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, offers 29,000 sf of meeting space, including two ballrooms with pre-function areas, 11 meeting rooms and a 9,000-sf terrace. Iron Chef Jose Garces developed the signature Rural Society restaurant themed around a contemporary Argentine steakhouse.
Keep an eye on Loews’ OE Collection. The “soft brand” will consist of independent lifestyle hotels that celebrate the local arts and culture community. They will be seamlessly integrated into Loews’ marketing and distribution channels, and while each property will be a standalone experience, planners will still engage with the same Loews’ corporate group sales teams to source hotel programs.
The primary brand differentiator is “cultural context,” explains Constantine Dimas, chief business officer of the OE Collection. He says Loews’ new hotel group is designed to shift meeting attendee’s perspectives by emphasizing the most inspiring artistic and cultured nuances of the local community.
“Our chairman Jonathan Tisch challenged us to take an introspective look at our company and see where the market is going in the next 10 years,” says Dimas. “We want the OE Collection properties to be what we’re calling an intersection of commerce and culture. It’s culture that pushes back on people. It’s culture that redefines their view of the world and our global marketplace.”