5 things to know: 14 March 2017
5 things to know: 14 March 2017
14 MARCH 2017 9:35 AM

From the desks of the Hotel News Now editorial staff:

  • Pace Holdings, Playa Hotels & Resorts close deal
  • Federal Reserve looks to raise interest rates again
  • Queensgate’s Generator buy marks 2nd hotel-hostel era
  • Winter Storm Stella upsets air travel
  • Six states sue to block new federal travel ban

Pace Holdings, Playa Hotels & Resorts close deal: TPG Partner’s affiliate special-purpose acquisition company Pace Holdings has closed on its deal with Playa Hotels & Resorts to form a combined company, according to a news release. The company name will remain Playa Hotels & Resorts.

Playa CEO and Chairman Bruce Wardinski and his management team will still run the combined company, the release states, while TPG Partner and Pace President and CEO Karl Peterson will join the company’s board of directors. Paul Hackwell, investor in TPG’s Travel & Leisure and Retail Group, and Tom Klein, former president, CEO and board member of the Sabre Corporation, will also join the board.

Federal Reserve looks to raise interest rates again: The Federal Reserve has signaled it will likely raise interest rates again 15 March, the Wall Street Journal reports. This increase comes only a matter of months since it last raised rates in December 2016, which came after a year of speculation following the first increase in nearly 10 years in December 2015.

Other countries’ central banks are taking the opposite approach, holding steady for the time being, the newspaper reports.

“There is no longer that sense of urgency in taking further actions,” said European Central Bank President Mario Draghi. “That urgency that was prompted by the risks of deflation isn’t there.”

Queensgate’s Generator buy marks 2nd hotel-hostel era: Private equity firm Queensgate Investments is acquiring Generator, a hostel-hotel hybrid, for €450 million ($480 million), HNN’s Terence Baker reports. The deal is expected to close in May 2017.

Jason Kow, CEO of Queensgate Investments said in a statement, “the Generator hostel product … can now invade budget hotel and lifestyle hotel territory,” and added that he feels the hostel marking is the quickest expanding segment in the hospitality sector.

The seller, Patron Capital, originally purchased Generator in 2008.

Winter Storm Stella upsets air travel: Airlines have so far canceled 7,746 flights this week, USA Today reports, throwing off the travel plans of approximately 400,000 people. In New York and Boston, more than 80% of the scheduled flights were canceled. Half of the flights from Washington, D.C., and Philadelphia saw the same fate.

“Anybody looking to travel on Tuesday, whether by land or air, will find it difficult or impossible in many places,” said Tom Kines, senior meteorologist for AccuWeather.

Six states sue to block new federal travel ban: The states of Washington, California, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York and Oregon are seeking a court order to prevent a revised executive order placing a temporary ban on refugees and travelers from several predominantly Muslim countries, Reuters reports. Hawaii has previously filed its own separate suit.

A federal court issued an injunction against a previous executive order. The new executive order still stops citizens of Iran, Libya, Syria, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen from entering the U.S. for 90 days, but it now has explicit waivers for categories of immigrants with ties to the U.S., the news agency reports.

The states suing to stop the order are arguing the ban “will cause severe and immediate harms to the States, including our residents, our colleges and universities, our healthcare providers, and our businesses,” Reuters reports.

Compiled by Bryan Wroten.

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