Cities at risk of overtourism in next 10 years; WTTC report

Travel and Tour World | June 17, 2019

Cities at risk of overtourism in next 10 years; WTTC report
Overtourism has become Oxford Dictionary’s 2018 Words of the Year. The new report of World Tourism and Travel Council (WTTC) reveals the 50 cities which are most at risk of the phenomenon over the next 10 years. It identifies places most at risk, based on projected growth coupled with a lack of infrastructure to deal with the oncoming tourism boom.

Spotlight

Relying on blockchain technology, URTravel strives to level the playing field between travel-related businesses and their customers. At present, the travel industry – an enormous market that generates some $7.8 trillion a year – is riddled with imbalanced business-client relationships that prove harmful to both sides; many businesses that sell quality services lose clients by failing to focus on customer loyalty and engagement. A more balanced relationship can shore up a travel provider’s customer base, while ensuring that clients are always in tune with the best travel deals

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BUSINESS TRAVEL

Hyatt Teams Up with Gopuff to Offer Everyday Essentials On-the-Go

Hyatt Hotels Corporation | August 31, 2021

Hyatt Hotels Corporation, announced a collaboration between the Hyatt Place brand and Gopuff, a go-to platform for consumers’ immediate everyday needs, such as drinks, snacks, over-the-counter medications, home and baby products and more, including alcohol in select markets. Starting today at more than a dozen Hyatt Place hotels, this pilot program will create an added layer of convenience and comfort for travelers, providing guests at participating properties with fast, free delivery of thousands of everyday items. Guests at participating hotels can receive items in just 30 minutes delivered from Gopuff’s local micro-fulfillment centers. The collaboration will expand the Hyatt Place brand’s Necessities program, which offers guests a wide range of essentials to keep, borrow or buy, such as toothpaste, cellphone chargers or headphones. In a recent survey, Hyatt learned that 60% of travelers have forgotten to pack an item (e.g., toiletries and first aid) for a business or leisure trip*. Leveraging data from the same survey, Hyatt and Gopuff identified the most-often-forgotten and most-likely-to-purchase items and collaborated to create in-app categories such as Travel Essentials, Spa Retreat, Movie Night, Office on the Go, and more, to ensure guests have easy, quick access to the items they need most while traveling. “As both business and leisure travelers adjust their travel routines and seek new ways to travel safely, it’s important for us to keep the needs and wellbeing of our guests at the forefront of everything we do,” said Emily Wright, Global Brand Leader, Hyatt. “Every detail of the Hyatt Place experience is designed around innovation and intuitive design to make guest stays as seamless and comfortable as possible. Our collaboration with Gopuff is just another way the brand is helping guests get the most out of their stay, regardless of their reason for travel.” Through this collaboration, Hyatt Place guests at participating hotels may enjoy the following benefits: Free delivery on every Gopuff order for all Hyatt Place guests at participating properties. Access to quick and free delivery of thousands of products, including drinks, snacks, over-the-counter medications, home cleaning and baby products, alcohol in select markets, and pet products for those guests traveling with their furry friends. Guests who are using Gopuff for the first time will also receive $10 credit for their first two orders ($20 total) Guests staying at participating Hyatt Place pilot hotels in Nashville and Phoenix specifically may also take advantage of fresh meals, such as pizza, breakfast sandwiches, cafe style coffee and matcha drinks, and more. “As a customer-first business, we’re excited to work with Hyatt to bring a one-of-a-kind, convenient experience to their guests,” said Marshall Osborne, Gopuff’s Head of Business Development. “As we continue our mission to become the world’s go-to solution for immediate everyday needs, we're excited to leverage our unique model to innovate yet another industry – travel. We look forward to collaborating with Hyatt to improve the way we travel and to enable Gopuff to deliver to more customers in new ways." Through February 2022, Hyatt Place guests at the following pilot locations can simply scan the QR code placed in their rooms and common areas to take advantage of the offer during their stay or visit Gopuff.com/r/gohyattplace for more information. Once registered as a new Gopuff user, guests can shop across various product categories and the discount will be automatically applied at checkout. About Hyatt Hotels Corporation Hyatt Hotels Corporation, headquartered in Chicago, is a leading global hospitality company offering 20 premier brands. As of June 30, 2021, the Company's portfolio included more than 1,000 hotel and all-inclusive properties in 68 countries across six continents. The Company's purpose to care for people so they can be their best informs its business decisions and growth strategy and is intended to attract and retain top employees, build relationships with guests and create value for shareholders.

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HOSPITALITY TRENDS

An ex-Holiday Inn Executive is Behind a $500 Million Plan to Jazz Up Troubled Hotels

Holiday Inn | April 23, 2021

Ken Hamlet, the former CEO of Holiday Inn, intends to use a $500 million war chest to acquire limited-service hotels (those without facilities such as a restaurant or spa) and reposition them as properties with a more upscale customer experience. Consider it adding more of the Four Seasons experience to roadside hotels, as Hamlet put it. He was CEO of Holiday Inn for nine years in the 1980s and early 1990s, and during that time the business was purchased by IHG and introduced or acquired brands such as Embassy Suites, Crowne Plaza, Hampton Inn, and Harrah's. Rather than starting his fund, Hamlet joined Olive Tree Hotels & Resorts, a hotel investment group where he now serves as CEO, to pursue deals. “I began to think of maybe now is a very good time to take advantage of getting back into the hotel industry and purchasing distressed assets or buying assets that were well-located, well-branded, relatively well-managed, and that were being distressed and only needed additional capital to get them up to 2021 standards,” he said this week. The only thing is that there is a litany of hotel investors drooling about hotel investment prospects that did not come true before the pandemic. Investment firms such as CGI Merchant Group, in collaboration with New York Yankees baseball legend Alex Rodriguez, and Bainbridge DXS are also scouring the market for hotel acquisitions of hundreds of millions of dollars in the coming years. Dreamscape Cos., owner of the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, has more than $1 billion in cash to purchase hotels, including troubled business-transient and convention-focused properties. Olive Tree's capital distinguishes itself by concentrating on limited-service hotels in a mix of the 75 major U.S. cities as well as some secondary and tertiary markets such as Las Cruces, New Mexico. As long as there is a nearby demand driver, such as a hospital, university, or office park, the company can seek a deal. The majority of buyers are looking for troubled hotels in metropolitan markets or resorts in drive-to and leisure destinations. Olive Tree intends to upgrade its guest rooms with more innovative features, such as automated check-ins and co-working-inspired workspaces in public areas. But, in addition to the technology, Hamlet desires enhanced client support, such as staffers adding personal touches to the guest experience, such as a bottle of wine or glass of champagne delivered to a room or hors d'oeuvres and chocolate bars in the lobby. The move is reminiscent of how Holiday Inn became a brand. Kemmons Wilson established the roadside motel business in the early 1950s after becoming dissatisfied with the choices offered on a road trip between Memphis, Tenn., and Washington, D.C. He set out to fix it because there was no consistency or quality in the accommodation experience. Olive Tree intends to replicate the success of existing limited-service hotels that are underperforming. Many of Olive Tree's acquisitions would be branded by major companies such as Marriott, Hilton, Hyatt, and IHG. However, the company is not opposed to maintaining property independence or even launching its brand. It is unclear when any of those acquisition goals will become available. Olive Tree reportedly has one hotel under contract and another "in the works." Due to a mix of bank forbearance on mortgages and several rounds of federal stimulus by offerings such as the Paycheck Protection Program of forgivable small business loans, there haven't been as many distressed hotel properties exchanged throughout the last year. The Olive Tree team does not anticipate having to wait much longer.

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Spain Will Reopen to International Travelers on July 1

The Telegraph | May 25, 2020

Spanish Prime Minister, Pedro Sánchez, announced over the weekend that Spain will reopen to overseas tourists, beginning July 1, 2020. On that date, the government will officially lift its current fourteen-day quarantine policy for foreign arrivals, The Telegraph reported. Sánchez said: “As you know, Spain receives more than 80 million visitors a year. I am announcing that from July, Spain will reopen for foreign tourism in conditions of safety,” said Sánchez, according to, The Guardian. “Spain needs tourism, and tourism needs safety in both origin and destination. We will guarantee that tourists will not run any risks, nor will they bring any risk to our country.”

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Spotlight

Relying on blockchain technology, URTravel strives to level the playing field between travel-related businesses and their customers. At present, the travel industry – an enormous market that generates some $7.8 trillion a year – is riddled with imbalanced business-client relationships that prove harmful to both sides; many businesses that sell quality services lose clients by failing to focus on customer loyalty and engagement. A more balanced relationship can shore up a travel provider’s customer base, while ensuring that clients are always in tune with the best travel deals