InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) has finally revealed its new midscale brand will be called ‘avid’.

First introduced to owners at the IHG Americas Conference in June, the company says avid hotels is “franchise ready beginning today”, officially marking the start of licensing in the United States for the highly-anticipated new brand.

IHG says more than 150 owners have already expressed interest in the brand demonstrating the strong demand and great potential for avid hotels in this market segment, which will initially debut in the company’s largest market, the United States

The company expects the first avid hotels locations to begin construction in early 2018, and the first hotel is anticipated to open in early 2019.

“We built our Holiday Inn Express brand into a hugely successful, leading midscale brand,” said IHG CEO, Keith Barr, who flagged the new brand with HM back in June.

“Now, with the introduction of avid hotels, we’re set to add another one and extend IHG’s leadership position in this segment.

“With 14 million potential customers looking for the type of hospitality avid hotels will offer, this new hotel brand represents a significant growth opportunity for IHG and our family of owners,” he said.

IHG says the brand is designed for “travellers who want a hotel stay that finally meets their expectations for the type of hospitality they value most – the basics done exceptionally well – at a price point expected to be about $10-15 less than IHG’s industry-leading Holiday Inn Express brand”.

Setting the brand apart, the modern exterior hotel design includes an open and airy retail-like entry, a canopy and uses the stairwell as an eye catching red architectural feature.

On the inside, guests will find vibrant, open public and work areas and inviting communal spaces that allow guests to relax, work, connect or eat. Hotels will offer a focused, high-quality, complimentary breakfast and marketplace options made for guests on the go.

The entire hotel will be equipped with IHG Connect Wi-Fi with the fastest speed in the industry and the ability for loyalty members to be automatically connected for all future visits.

Hotels will also leverage IHG’s state-of-the-art, cloud-based next generation reservation system.

Guest room renderings released this week (Sep 19) highlight unique hotel features. Rooms are constructed with sound reducing features for a superior night’s sleep, and the bathroom experience re-energizes guests with our fresh and bright design. Each guest room will also offer a dedicated workspace and ample open, easy-to-use storage, as well as innovative in-room entertainment options that allow guests to cast content from their smart devices to in-room televisions.

In addition to creating the brand to delight guests, its design and operating model was developed in collaboration with an owner advisory board, ensuring that avid hotels are efficient to build, operate and maintain.

Hotels will be designed for new build construction on an average lot size of approximately 1.5 acres, and all avid hotels will be built to lead the industry in environmentally friendly and efficient design.

The prototype design features 95-100 keys with a minimum of three stories.

James Wilkinson

Editor-In-Chief, Hotel Management