By James Wilkinson at the NYU Conference in New York
Hilton has become the latest global chain to launch a collection brand targeting independent boutique hotels.
Named Curio – A Collection by Hilton, the new brand was launched at today’s [June 2] NYU International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference in New York City to applause from investors and operators alike.
Hilton Worldwide CEO and President, Christopher J. Nassetta, said Curio was a “global collection of distinctive four- to five-star hotels” and the first properties to join the collection were the SLS Las Vegas Hotel and Casino, the Sam Houston Hotel in Houston, Texas, the Hotel Alex Johnson in Rapid City, South Dakota, the Franklin Hotel in Chapel Hill, North Carolina and a “soon to be named hotel development” in downtown Portland, Oregon.
“Our customers and owners have expressed strong interest in a brand from us that includes hotels that can retain their unique identity but also deliver the many benefits of our system, including our Hilton HHonors guest loyalty program,” he said.
“That desire, combined with the current size of the independent hotel market and demand for differentiated hotel stays around the world, made for the right timing for this launch. Curio is an exciting new brand for us – one of two unique concepts we’ll introduce this year,” Nassetta said.
Hilton says “just as the word ‘curio’ can refer to something of interest, unique or even rare, each Curio hotel will be different from the next, with individuality being a common thread, along with the quiet reassurance of the Hilton name behind every location”.
SBE Chief Executive Officer, Sam Nazarian, said there were a number of reasons the soon-to-open SLS Las Vegas, designed by Philippe Starck, his company chose to work with Hilton.
“Today’s [June 2 local time] announcement marks the beginning of an important relationship between SBE and Hilton Worldwide and an opportunity for me to work alongside a mentor and good friend in Chris Nassetta,” he said.
“Our mission to redefine excellence in hospitality to our guests at SLS Las Vegas aligns perfectly with the Hilton Worldwide vision for Curio.
“We have a proven record of creating brands that provide memorable guest experiences, whether in the hospitality, dining, nightlife or real estate sectors.
“Partnering with Hilton and Curio allows us to maintain the SLS brand identity while offering the benefits of Hilton Worldwide’s commercial engines and the strength of the Hilton HHonors loyalty program,” Nazarian said.
The addition of Curio takes Hilton’s portfolio to 11 brands worldwide.
For more reports on the 2014 NYU Conference, look out for HM’s e-newsletter tomorrow (June 4).
HM travelled to New York with Air New Zealand and JetBlue. In Business Class, Air New Zealand offers world-class food and wine that highlights the best New Zealand has to offer, while also not compromising on comfort with flatbed seats which feature super-comfortable seat-toppers, large pillows and duvets. You won’t get bored, with hundreds of hours of entertainment available on demand. On JetBlue, expect great on-board service, complimentary seat-back cable TV, snacks and refreshments. JetBlue flies several times daily from Los Angeles to New York, where seamless connections are available from Air New Zealand’s twice-daily flights from Auckland. Visit ww.airnz.com.au and www.jetblue.com