Travel + Leisure Co | September 25, 2023
Travel + Leisure Co. collaborates with Sports Hospitality Ventures to launch sports-themed resort complexes near college towns.
Introducing the Sports Illustrated Resorts vacation club, uniting sports enthusiasts and offering flexible bookings and amenities.
Sports Illustrated Resorts unveils residences, with fractional and wholly owned condominiums managed professionally.
Expansion plans include chic beach clubs and experience parks, with a Tuscaloosa resort expected to open in late 2025.
Travel + Leisure Co, a membership and leisure travel company, has partnered with Sports Hospitality Ventures, LLC, the hotel and resorts licensee for the esteemed Sports Illustrated brand in North America and the Caribbean. Together, they introduce an innovative vision for a series of sports-themed resort and lifestyle complexes strategically situated in vibrant college towns catering to passionate fan communities.
A novel addition to the Sports Illustrated Resorts portfolio is the vacation club. This innovative concept aims to unite fervent sports fans, friends, and families by elevating their accommodation experience. Club members will enjoy the flexibility to make repeat resort reservations and access a variety of amenities across the expanding Sports Illustrated Resorts portfolio. This endeavor is made possible through the partnership of Travel + Leisure Co., leveraging its expertise in managing brand collaborations.
Additionally, Sports Illustrated Resorts introduces residences, offering fractional and wholly owned condominiums managed professionally through the collaboration. The residences promise a range of signature services and amenities in line with the active lifestyle theme of Sports Illustrated Resorts. The inaugural college town resort in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, is just the beginning, with plans for further expansion fueled by the collaboration between Sports Hospitality Ventures, Authentic Brands Group, and Kituwah LLC, representing the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, who have committed $320 million to propel the growth of the Sports Illustrated Resorts brand.
With a vision to deliver immersive experiences celebrating the iconic moments of Sports Illustrated's outstanding history, Sports Illustrated Resorts has become a destination beyond conventional lodging. The resorts' unique design will transport guests and owners into the heart of sports culture, with diverse attractions, live sports and entertainment, fine dining, and wellness facilities. While the initial focus is on university locations, the broader portfolio will extend to chic beach clubs and experience parks in prime leisure destinations. Sports Illustrated Resorts is adopting an asset-light development financing model for its expansion, with the Tuscaloosa resort anticipated to welcome guests in late 2025. While Travel + Leisure Co. foresees no immediate earnings impact, it anticipates this venture will drive incremental growth from the latter half of 2025 onwards.
Travel Technology, Hospitality Management
Virgin Voyages | September 08, 2023
Virgin Voyages announced a $550 million funding round led by Ares Management for global expansion.
Founder Tom McAlpin transitions to Chairman of the Board, while Nirmal Saverimuttu takes over as CEO, bringing extensive experience from Virgin Voyages' early days.
Virgin Voyages looks forward to continued success and collaboration with investors, including Ares Management, to drive future growth and innovation.
Virgin Voyages, the award-winning cruise brand backed by Richard Branson's Virgin Group, has announced the completion of a $550 million fundraise led by Ares Management's Private Equity Group. This funding, including contributions from existing investors such as Virgin Group and Bain Capital, is poised to propel Virgin Voyages into international markets while enhancing the overall customer experience.
Partner and Co-Portfolio Manager of Special Opportunities in the Ares Private Equity Group, Aaron Rosen, remarked,
With this new investment alongside our partners at Virgin Group and Bain Capital, we believe the company is on strong footing to capitalize on its differentiated product and value proposition in the growing cruise industry.
[Source - Cision PR Newswire]
Established as a leading player in the industry, Virgin Voyages has swiftly gained recognition and accolades with a fleet serving various destinations and recent wins like topping the mega-ship category in Travel + Leisure's 2023 World's Best Awards and sweeping all five cruise categories in the 2023 Cruise Critic Cruisers' Choice Awards.
Alongside this development, Tom McAlpin, the founding CEO, is transitioning to the role of Chairman of the Board. Nirmal Saverimuttu is taking the reins as the new Chief Executive Officer, having formerly served as President and Chief Experience Officer. In addition, Nirmal Saverimuttu has been a foundational figure at Virgin Voyages since 2014, when he joined as Chief Commercial Officer after securing initial investments from the Virgin Group. His role expanded in 2021 to President and Chief Experience Officer, making him well-prepared to guide the brand into its next phase of growth and innovation.
Nirmal Saverimuttu, CEO of Virgin Voyages, said,
I want to send our deepest thanks, on behalf of all our Crew and the Board, to Tom for his leadership and passion for the business. We are so grateful for all he has done and are thrilled to continue to partner with him as our Chairman.
[Source – Cision PR Newswire]
Virgin Voyages is a trusted brand due to its crew's dedication and passion for offering remarkable experiences for its guests. Nirmal also expressed his anticipation of collaborating with the Ares team and Virgin Voyages' current investors to execute growth and expansion plans as the company contemplates its promising future.
PR Newswire | October 23, 2023
Air France-KLM and Sabre Corporation a leading software and technology provider that powers the global travel industry, today announced completion of a strategic multi-year NDC distribution agreement as well as the renewal of their existing EDIFACT agreement. Collaboration between the partners has been extended with New Distribution Capability (NDC) enriched offers, which will be marketed and sold alongside EDIFACT content, through Sabre's global distribution system (GDS). The Air France-KLM NDC offers will be rolled out to Sabre-connected travel agencies in a phased approach next year.
The agreement demonstrates Sabre's continued commitment to driving value and serving the diverse interests of the various stakeholders participating in the global travel marketplace. It helps agencies to efficiently shop and compare increasingly sophisticated offers, while their travelers will benefit from an enhanced experience with more choice and transparency. It also enables Air France and KLM to distribute their customized NDC offers, thanks to continuous pricing and tailor-made bundles, to the global network of Sabre-connected agencies.
said Angus Clarke, Chief Commercial Officer, Air France-KLM.
Choosing the right travel technology partners with which to collaborate is essential. Hence, we are pleased to extend our cooperation with Sabre. This will support our travel agent partners to provide the Air France-KLM enriched and attractive NDC offer, giving the travelers a wider range of options to enhance their journey, from start to finish.
[Source: PR Newswire]
"Our partnership with Air France-KLM reflects our commitment to modern travel retailing and a big step forward for our presence in Europe," added Roshan Mendis, Chief Commercial Officer, Sabre Travel Solutions. "From the beginning, Sabre has been committed to go beyond NDC to help build a new travel ecosystem that is more efficient and personalized, meeting the dynamic needs of today's travelers. We are delighted to bring our customers EDIFACT and enhanced NDC content as we transition to a new world of Offers and Orders."