Several weeks ago IHG announced that they were acquiring a 51% stake in Regent Hotels, and now they’ve announced a further acquisition of properties.
InterContinental Hotels Group has entered into a conditional agreement with Foncière des Régions to rebrand and operate 13 of their hotels in the UK. With this acquisition, IHG will have over 2,000 additional hotel rooms in the UK.
This deal includes the following 13 hotels, 12 of which are already in operation, and one of which is in the pipeline:
- The Principal London
- The Principal Edinburgh Charlotte Square
- The Principal Edinburgh George Street
- The Principal Met Hotel (Leeds)
- The Principal York
- De Vere Oxford Thames
- The Grand Birmingham (pipeline)
- The Principal Manchester
- The Principal Blythswood Square (Glasgow)
- The Principal Grand Central (Glasgow)
- The Principal St David’s (Cardiff)
- The Principal Oxford Spires
- De Vere Wotton House
IHG says they plan to brand these properties in one of three ways — as InterContinentals, as Kimptons, or as a new independent hotel brand (more on that below). It’s great to see more InterContinentals coming to the UK, and also to see the first Kimpton in the UK, and only the second Kimpton in Europe (after Amsterdam).
As part of this announcement, IHG has also revealed that they’re introducing a new upscale hotel brand, which will be launched later this year. They plan to brand some of the new hotel additions as this. Here’s how IHG describes this new brand:
The brand, principally focused on conversion opportunities, will capitalise on the significant opportunity IHG has identified to offer consumers an informal but differentiated experience in the upscale segment, whilst offering owners a strong return on investment. These hotels will provide high-quality representation for the brand in IHG’s largest market within the Europe, Middle East, Asia & Africa (EMEAA) region, where it will initially be launched.
It sounds like IHG will be launching an independent hotel brand, like Tribute Portfolio for Starwood, Curio Collection for Hilton, Autograph Collection for Marriott, etc.
The press release suggests that these hotels may only be rebranded in 1-2 years time, so don’t necessarily expect that we’ll be able to redeem points at them anytime soon.
This is an exciting addition to the IHG portfolio. The way I see it, IHG has long lagged in the upscale market, since their biggest strength is with limited service properties. Seeing them introduce more upscale properties — especially those with some charm — is a positive development.
Are you excited at the prospect of staying at any of these hotels once rebranded?