Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group Is Rebranding As Radisson Hotel Group

Filed Under: Club Carlson, Hotels

Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group has over 1,000 hotels around the world, with their most popular brand being Radisson. While I understand why the hotel group is named the way it is, I’ve always found the branding to be strange, especially with their loyalty program being called Club Carlson. The brand with the most name recognition in their portfolio is Radisson, yet there’s no mention of that in the name of the hotel group or the name of the loyalty program.

Skift reports on how Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group is rebranding as Radisson Hotel Group, which they say is being done to “leverage the wide awareness of the Radisson brand name globally.” You can expect them to rebrand some of their individual hotel collections as well. For example, just weeks ago “Country Inn & Suites by Carlson” was rebranded as “Country Inn & Suites by Radisson,” and “Quorvus Collection” is in the process of being rebranded as “Radisson Collection.”

Radisson Hotel Group also plans on rebranding their Club Carlson loyalty program, though the name of the new program hasn’t yet been announced. My guess is that the loyalty program will also have the word “Radisson” in the name, and might be something like Club Radisson. This will probably be the most major rebranding, given the brand recognition that Club Carlson has built up over the years. While changing Country Inn & Suites from “by Carlson” to “by Radisson” isn’t that major, it’s much more significant to change the name of a loyalty program with millions of members.

Carlson’s updates here aren’t just to branding. They also have a five year plan to become one of the top three hotel companies in the world, with a focus on improving their portfolio in the Americas. As part of this they plan on eliminating at least 10% of their underperforming properties in the Americas, and plan to reposition Radisson as a more premium brand. Furthermore, they plan on investing in hotels in 21 key gateway cities throughout the Americas to create “billboard properties,” mostly under the Radisson Blu brand.

There’s no doubt Radisson has a good reputation in Europe, while in the US they don’t have as good of a reputation, as most of their properties aren’t that great. However, they’re clearly trying to change that.

Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group is now majority owned by HNA Group, the same parent company as Hainan Airlines and other travel and tourism companies. We haven’t seen too many day-to-day changes as a result of that, though long term I imagine we’ll see the brand also grow significantly in Asia.

What do you make of Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group rebranding as Radisson Hotel Group?

  1. I still want to see stats on redemption activity before and after the summer when US Bank eliminated the last night free and they jacked up many of the redemption rates. I bet things fell off a cliff.

  2. Adding ‘by Radisson’ is good idea, but seeing their brands laid out like this shows me a different issue.
    They will have Radisson Collection, Radisson Blu, Radisson and Radisson Red.

    I think this is a mistake as I assume they are trying to copy Marriott, Hilton etc with creating new sub-brands, but to the normal person they just all seem to be Radisson’s.

  3. The 5-year plan was presented on the 17th of January. It’s very detailed, and lots of details were laid out.

    As for the name of the new loyalty program – “new Loyalty Program – Radisson Rewards”

    If you want to learn more – review their presentation material by visiting their website.

  4. What a horrible idea. Why rename your company to the name of your failed brand? Radisson has huge reputational issues in the United States. May as well rename your company “garbage.” Burn it down. Start afresh.

  5. Actually, I’ve always felt that way with SPG. And yeah, there’s no cohesion across brand ID such that people know what’s a Carlson brand or not.

    I don’t know if stvr is right or not — Radisson Blu has some objectively nice properties, particularly in Europe. But as lucky points out, it’s a lackluster brand in the US.

  6. It’s a very stingy brand regardless of the name with no real benefits or footprint to qualify for any beneies. Still sitting on 278K points with worthless Gold “status” and nowhere to burn them in the foreseeable future!

  7. I stayed at the Park Inn by Radisson New Delhi Lajpat Nagar recently and Gold status with 400,000 points served little if any purpose. The hotel turned off the air conditioning stating the weather was cold (cold for New Delhi, yes) and the hot water ceased after the morning shower. The issues are well beyond a name change.

  8. My beef is actually with the Club Carlson credit card. Why the f do they have foreign transaction fees on this card when the good hotels (the one I visit) are outside the US????????? *long slow eyeroll*

  9. I love the idea of seeing this formerly prominent brand back in action. I stayed in plenty of Radisson properties back in the day, but they’re all long gone (most became reflagged as competing brands). As I hadn’t seen any in my part of the country in years, I presumed Carlson had been acquired and the former brands put to rest. Then I got back into travel and was surprised to discover that the company still exists and that there are actually still a few remaining Radissons in the US (and obviously more elsewhere). We definitely need more competition in the hotel industry, so hopefully the new Radisson brand will help raise standards.

  10. @stvr: “Why rename your company to the name of your failed brand?”
    Because Radisson isn’t failed brand and US is not the whole world. Their biggest and most important market is EMEA (well, EME part of it :)) where people link Radisson to Radisson Blu hotels, which tend to be pretty good. It would be much more weird if they did not use the brand that has very good reputation in their main market.

    There aren’t been “pure” Radissons in Europe, only Radisson Blu and Radisson RED, although they plan to introduce Radisson to Europe this year (according to the 5-year plan).

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