From the desks of the Hotel News Now editorial staff:
- Hyatt, Starwood report Q1 earnings
- How to prepare for the rise of pot tourism
- Starwood timeshare sale delayed
- Gen Z overtaking baby boomers
- Tech changing lead generation
Hyatt, Starwood report Q1 earnings: Both Hyatt Hotels Corporation and Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide announced their first quarter results. Here are some of the highlights.
Hyatt: Comparable systemwide revenue per available room increased 2.2% for the quarter while adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization grew 4.9% to $194 million. Net rooms grew 7% year over year.
Starwood: Worldwide same-store RevPAR fell 1.3% in actual dollars but grew 1% in constant dollars. The company saw systemwide domestic RevPAR grow 2% in constant dollars (or 1.3% in actual dollars). Management and franchise fees grew 6.7% year over year, while core fees grew 4.2%.
How to prepare for the rise of pot tourism: Four states—Colorado, Washington, Oregon and Alaska—along with Washington, D.C., are leading the way with legalizing recreational marijuana use. Hoteliers in those areas, and others where marijuana use is quickly becoming more accepted, need to be mindful of legal issues surrounding its use, writes HNN reporter Bryan Wroten.
This will include making considerations for smoking regulations, employee policies and general safety concerns. Joel Schneider, CEO of the MaryJane Group, said it’s important to remember that nonsmoking rooms are still nonsmoking rooms even if a property allows marijuana use.
“We don’t want guests smoking in the rooms,” he said. “Ninety-five percent of people are compliant.”
Starwood timeshare sale delayed: Possible tax issues have put Starwood’s spinoff and sale of its timeshare business, Vistana Signature Experiences, to Interval Leisure Group on hold, according to a joint press release from the companies.
The companies say they’re working to “avoid unnecessary tax withholding under the Foreign Investment in Real Property Tax Act of 1980.” The deal, first announced in October, was expected to close on 30 April and is now slated to close by the end of May.
Gen Z overtaking baby boomers: Baby boomers have long been the generational powerhouse when it comes to business. But The Wall Street Journal reports that the boomer generation will soon be only the third-largest generation in the country, falling behind millennials and the insurgent Generation Z, which marks those born in 1998 and later.
The Journal writes the rise of Generation Z is fueled by a combination of births and immigration rather than boomers dying. Boomers are expected to remain at the top in consumer spending for the near future as they hold a larger portion of the nation’s wealth.
Tech changing lead generation: Digital lead generation is quickly shifting, according to a recent report from Tech Crunch, with the hotel industry expected to shift to a model of more immediate and short-term demand.
The site said lead generation in travel is being shaped by on-demand apps, with services billed as Uber for private jets set to thrive. Some startups, like Recharge, are pushing last minute hotel bookings that can sell rooms for as little as 10 minutes at relatively high rates.
Compiled by Sean McCracken.