Accor gets access to Alibaba customers via distribution and loyalty deal

PhocusWire | November 11, 2019

Accor and Alibaba have signed a partnership which opens up the hospitality company’s properties to more Chinese travelers. According to the companies, the agreement aims to develop “digital applications and loyalty programs” by integrating Accor’s products and services within the Alibaba ecosystem. The collaboration includes travel arm Fliggy, which will enable consumers to book hotels, entertainment and other lifestyle services as well as access catering services. Accor has had a store on Fliggy since 2016. In addition, payments can be made via Alipay, which is operated by Alibaba sister company Ant Financial. It’s not the first time Alibaba, which claims to have almost 700 million consumers across its marketplaces in China, has struck such a deal.

Spotlight

If you’re a vacation junkie – one part of your brain is always busy planning the next break – here’s some great news for you: you are reaping a host of physical, mental and emotional benefits, way more than you anticipated!For example, those little bubble-bursts of energy that pop before you’ve even started the vacation are actually your heart pumping with excitement, causing an adrenalin rush! And the happiness hormones are doing a constant jig, which is marvelous for your state of mind! Next time you’re on vacation, tell people it’s recommended therapy!

Spotlight

If you’re a vacation junkie – one part of your brain is always busy planning the next break – here’s some great news for you: you are reaping a host of physical, mental and emotional benefits, way more than you anticipated!For example, those little bubble-bursts of energy that pop before you’ve even started the vacation are actually your heart pumping with excitement, causing an adrenalin rush! And the happiness hormones are doing a constant jig, which is marvelous for your state of mind! Next time you’re on vacation, tell people it’s recommended therapy!

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TRAVEL TECHNOLOGY,BUSINESS TRAVEL

Cathay Pacific Airways Extends Partnership with Sabre

Sabre | June 21, 2022

On June 20, Sabre, a leading software and technology provider in the travel industry, announced an enhanced partnership with Cathay Pacific Airways. This partnership will allow Sabre-connected travel agencies across the world to access dynamic New Distribution Capability (NDC) content from Cathay Pacific through the Sabre travel marketplace. Sabre gets extra traction on its NDC roadmap while creating additional modern airline retaining opportunities for Cathay Pacific. Additionally, the partnership Sabre-connected agencies to shop, book and service Cathay Pacific content to create more personalized experiences for the end traveler. At the beginning of this year, Cathay Pacific chose Sabre’s Fares Manager and Fares Optimizer solutions to achieve strategic pricing and intelligent offer creation. "As we move further into recovery, it's vital that we are able to create more differentiated content that is reflective of travelers' wants and needs today and tomorrow, Having created that content, we need to make sure that as many travelers as possible have access to it, whether through direct or indirect channels. That's why we're delighted to be joining Sabre's Beyond NDC family at this key moment for the travel industry." -Cathay Pacific General Manager Sales and Distribution Martin Xu. " NDC is more important than ever as the travel industry seeks to capture the tailwinds of recovery, and 2022 is gearing up to be a key year for our NDC efforts," said Kathy Morgan, Vice President, Channel Delivery, Sabre Travel Solutions. "A critical enabler in creating a more dynamic distribution environment where it is easier to adapt to changing marketing conditions, NDC is a win-win-win for the airline, agency and traveler, so we're thrilled to have Cathay Pacific join us as we continue to drive our long-term Beyond NDC retailing and distribution vision forward. Sabre is set to advance its capabilities as the agreement builds on a busy NDC roadmap. Cathay Pacific resumed flying to more destinations following changes to some travel curbs in Hong Kong.

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HOSPITALITY TRENDS

Capital Square and Method Co. Announce Groundbreaking of New ROOST Apartment Hotel in Charleston

Capital Square | July 22, 2022

Capital Square, one of the nation's leading sponsors of tax-advantaged real estate investments and an active developer of multifamily communities, and Method Co., a real estate management, development and design company rooted in hospitality, today held a groundbreaking ceremony for a new design-forward, 50-unit development bridging the boutique hotel experience with apartment-style living, located at 529 King Street in Charleston's historic downtown. The $61 million project designed by acclaimed Morris Adjmi Architects will feature 52,700 square feet of space comprising a mix of studio, one-, two- and three-bedroom apartment hotel units, a rooftop lounge, and 27,700 square feet of rentable space. Method Co. will operate the property's rooftop lounge, drawing on significant experience in food and beverage operations to create a space that serves both as an amenity to guests and locals. Attendees included Capital Square executives Louis Rogers, founder and CEO, and Whitson Huffman, chief strategy and investment officer; Method Co.'s CEO and co-founder, Randall Cook, and president and co-founder, David Grasso; and Kathy Crawford, regional director of the Office of U.S. Senator Tim Scott (S.C.). With construction now underway, the hotel property is slated for completion in early 2024. "Capital Square is an active developer of luxury properties in growing markets within the Southeast and we couldn't be more pleased to begin construction on our inaugural project in Charleston, Charleston is a premier market, home to a growing community of high-income families and one of the nation's most popular tourist destinations. 529 King Street will contribute to this legacy and become a premier destination for local residents and tourists alike." -Whitson Huffman, chief strategy and investment officer The property will be the city's first high-design, extended-stay hotel concept blending the comfort and practicality of an apartment with the amenities and design of a boutique hotel, creating a temporary living environment ideally suited for a long-term stay. "We are thrilled to break ground on our first ROOST Apartment Hotel in South Carolina and our second project in the city of Charleston, ROOST will offer guests in Charleston a comfortable stay in a beautifully designed apartment that feels like a home and the flexibility to stay a few nights or a few months. The building's design by Morris Adjmi Architects is outstanding; it will be a fitting complement to the classic architectural charm of Charleston." -David Grasso, President and Co-Founder of Method Co. Located in the highly sought-after "Upper King" section of downtown Charleston, which is home to a concentration of luxury retail stores, restaurants and nightlife, the new apartment hotel will serve as an ideal accommodation for the city's high volume of annual visitors. The Upper King Street neighborhood also supports a burgeoning tech and start-up scene and represents a growth corridor and exceptional demand generator for higher-end residential and hotel development. About ROOST Apartment Hotel ROOST Apartment Hotel is a high-design boutique extended-stay hotel concept, conceptualized by Philadelphia-based hospitality company Method Co. A first of its kind, ROOST introduces a fresh approach to hospitality by blending the comfort and practicality of an apartment with the amenities and design of a boutique hotel, creating a temporary living environment ideally suited for a long-term stay. Designed by Morris Adjmi Architects, ROOST offers studio, one and two-bedroom and penthouse apartments with full-sized kitchens and modern appliances in a beautifully appointed space, which features contemporary furnishings, antique elements, custom lighting, and unique artwork. Featured amenities include an artisanal coffee program curated by La Colombe, bike share program, and recurring resident receptions that partner with local vendors, while a dedicated 24-hour concierge desk and on-site services team further enhance and ensure a memorable guest experience. The first location, ROOST Midtown, opened in 2015 and features 28 fully furnished apartments; their second outpost, ROOST Rittenhouse, followed in 2016 featuring 27 apartments and a communal lobby; their third location, ROOST East Market opened in January 2019 with 60 apartments, an outdoor pool, and communal in Philadelphia's Midtown Village neighborhood. The fourth location is the first outside of Philadelphia – ROOST Cleveland, which opened in March 2022 and features 62 apartments located downtown within the historic May building, a restoration of the city's original 1915 department store, while their fifth location, ROOST Tampa, opened in July 2022 and includes 97 apartments within Asher, a residential building within the new Water Street development. ROOST has plans to open locations in other markets, including Detroit, Baltimore and Charleston. www.myroost.com About Capital Square Capital Square is a national real estate firm specializing in tax-advantaged real estate investments, including Delaware statutory trusts for Section 1031 exchanges, qualified opportunity zone funds for tax deferral and exclusion and a real estate investment trust (REIT). In recent years the company has become an active developer of mixed-use multifamily properties in the southeastern US, with eight current projects totaling approximately 2,000 apartment units with a total development cost in excess of $600 million. Since 2012, Capital Square has completed more than $6.0 billion in transaction volume. Capital Square's related entities provide a range of services, including due diligence, acquisition, loan sourcing, property/asset management, and disposition, for a growing number of high-net-worth investors, private equity firms, family offices and institutional investors. Since 2017, Capital Square has been recognized by Inc. 5000 as one of the fastest growing companies in the nation for four consecutive years. In 2017, 2018 and 2020, the company was also ranked on Richmond BizSense's list of fastest growing companies. Additionally, Capital Square was listed by Virginia Business on their "Best Places to Work in Virginia" report in 2019 and their "Fantastic 50" reports in 2019 and 2020. To learn more, visit www.CapitalSq.com. About Method Co. Method Co. is a Philadelphia-based hospitality, development, design and branding firm founded on the joining of historically compatible disciplines under one roof; the firm bridges the worlds of interior design and real estate development, while embracing the custom design of products, furniture, identities and experiences. Built from a team of individuals with extensive experience in the fields of finance, interior design, branding, architecture, urban planning and fine arts, Method company's diverse skill set forms the foundation of the firm's interdisciplinary practice. The team has been responsible for the design, staging and development of hotel, restaurant, and real estate projects, such as the ROOST Apartment Hotel brand, Whyle, Wm. Mulherin's Sons Restaurant & Hotel and HIROKI restaurant, along with the newly opened boutique property in Charleston, The Pinch, with plans to expand their concepts to other major markets within the US including Detroit and Wilmington, DE. www.methodco.com

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DESTINATION AND TOURISM,BUSINESS TRAVEL

EBG Acquires Undercover Tourist

EBG | June 30, 2022

EBG, one of the rapidly growing e-commerce solutions providers in the U.S. specializing in entertainment and travel, is acquiring Undercover Tourist, a privately held successful B2C online travel marketplace in the country. It specializes in theme parks and attractions. “With the addition of the Undercover Tourist platform to the EBG portfolio, we are gaining a strong consumer brand with a loyal customer following along with a robust knowledge base of engaging content for theme park vacations. We look forward to collaborating with the Undercover Tourist team to expand the platform and to help our supplier partners increase their reach,” -EBG CEO and Founder Brett Reizen. We are excited for Undercover Tourist to take this big leap, which is poised for growth and national product expansion and support as part of EBG’s network. I’m so proud of what the team has built over the years and the future offers amazing opportunities fueled by EBG's insight and guidance, explained Undercover Tourist CEO and Founder Ian Ford. The acquisition complements EBG's current offerings and will broaden EBG's portfolio to serve the B2C market while also providing timely and engaging content such as trip planning advice, travel tips, and more. The Undercover Tourist brand and platform will remain a separate business unit, with product offerings expanding nationally. EBG powers a diverse portfolio of technology solutions and operates a network of employer and membership-based platforms that reach a captive audience, providing leading brands with new distribution channels. The EBG network reaches over 100 million users through participating companies and closed-loop affinity and membership groups. Undercover Tourist, a travel website and theme park expert founded in 2000, has sold over 25 million theme park admission tickets to popular destinations and attractions such as Walt Disney World, Disneyland, Universal Orlando Resort, Universal Studios Hollywood, SeaWorld Parks, LEGOLAND Parks, and others. Along with saving time and money on attraction tickets, hotels, and car rentals, Undercover Tourist provides free vacation planning tools such as crowd calendars, park planning apps, and more.

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