5 things to know: 27 February 2019
 
5 things to know: 27 February 2019
27 FEBRUARY 2019 9:49 AM

From the desks of the Hotel News Now editorial staff:

  • Hyatt, Homeinns start JV for new Chinese brand
  • AAHOA challenges Florida Airbnb, HomeAway agreement
  • CEO shares insights on Pebblebrook-LaSalle integration
  • Wynn Resorts fined $20m
  • Tri-branded Marriot property opens in Nashville

Hyatt, Homeinns start JV for new Chinese brand: Hyatt Hotels Corporation and Homeinns Hotel Group have announced a “strategic joint venture to create a new hospitality brand,” which is as-yet unnamed, according to a news release from Hyatt. The new brand will be upper midscale and is meant to target young travelers in China.

Hyatt currently has 70 hotels in China, and Homeinns is one of the country’s larger chains, but Stephen Ho, Hyatt’s president of Greater China, global operations, said this marks a move into new segmentation for his company.

“All of our brands are positioned at the high end of every segment in which they operate, and this joint venture will be no different,” he said in the release. “Strengthening our representation in the underserved upper-midscale segment will advance our China commitment and is designed to deliver sustainable growth and value to all of our stakeholders.” 

AAHOA challenges Florida Airbnb, HomeAway agreement: The Asian American Hotel Owners Association is challenging an agreement between the Florida Department of Revenue and alternative accommodations platforms Airbnb and HomeAway on tax collection and remittance, according to a news release.

AAHOA officials claim the Florida arrangement was “was adopted without following the proper rule-making process, and the department lacked the legislative authority to enter into the agreement.”

The group complains that hosts aren’t subject to the same oversight and audits as hotels.

CEO shares insights on Pebblebrook-LaSalle integration: Three months after closing the deal to purchase LaSalle Hotel Properties, Pebblebrook Hotel Trust Chairman and CEO Jon Bortz shared new details on his plans for the company’s expanded portfolio, writes Hotel News Now’s Bryan Wroten.

Speaking during Pebblebrook’s fourth-quarter and full-year 2018 earnings call, Bortz said he is more than excited about the combined company.

“We concluded that the portfolio that remains is very unique and is of a higher quality and has more potential than we initially anticipated,” he said.

Wynn Resorts fined $20m: Authorities in Nevada have hit Wynn Resorts with a record $20 million fine related to “mishandling sexual misconduct allegations” against former CEO Steve Wynn, according to The Boston Globe.

‘‘It’s not about one man,’’ Commissioner Philip Pro, a former federal court judge, told the Associated Press. ‘‘It’s about a failure of a corporate culture to effectively govern itself as it should.’’

The Globe notes the company is currently seeking approvals from the Massachusetts Gaming Commission for a casino license in that state for a new property in Everett, Massachusetts. Commission spokeswoman Elaine Driscoll declined to comment on the fine or its potential effect on the future of the new property. 

Tri-branded Marriot property opens in Nashville: Marriott International officials have announced a new first for the company: the opening of a triple-branded property. The joint AC Hotels, Residence Inn and SpringHill Suites hotel opened in Nashville, Tennessee, and was developed by North Point Hospitality, according to a news release from Marriott.

The 21-story, $140 million property is across the street from the Music City Convention Center.

Compiled by Sean McCracken

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