Mall Operator Simon Property Group Bets on Adding Hotels

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Here are some excerpts from Daily Lodging Report from the past week. If you’re not a subscriber, you should be. Get news on hotel deals, development, stocks, and career moves. Sign up here, now.

Sunday, May 7

During the elevated inflationary period of 2022 and the first quarter of 2023, the U.S. hotel industry has significantly outpaced inflation growth, according to JLL’s latest U.S. Hotel Investment Trends report. In Q1 2023, ADR growth exceeded inflation growth by 4.3 percentage points.

Simon Property Group expects to spend roughly $1.5 billion building 2,000 multifamily units and hotel rooms over five years. A model is the Phipps Plaza in Atlanta, a mall with a Nobu Hotel. In terms of hotels, they will be headed for Florida. The REIT is also considering building a hotel in Cape Cod, Massachusetts

Drury Southwest plans to build a Drury Plaza hotel in College Station, Texas. The project is estimated to cost nearly $20 million. The full buildout is expected in the third quarter of 2024.

The Harbor Winds Hotel in Sheboygan, Wisconsin, has been sold by Pride Hospitality to Adventure Hospitality

Skift Note: Simon Property Group is one of the most significant operators of shopping malls and multi-residential complexes in the U.S., and it’s telling that they want to overweight hotels in their property development as part of the overall mix as traditional retail struggles in downtown centers.

Monday, May 8

Rosewood Hotels & Resorts has been appointed by Eleven D&C Co., Ltd. to manage Rosewood Seoul, a new build, 250-room, ultra-luxury hotel set to open in 2027. The hotel will exist within The Parkside Seoul beside Yongsan Park, occupying the former site of the United Nations Command. The urban resort will include seven restaurants and bars. The hotel will have a spa and multi-purpose event space totaling 1,800 square meters.

Kaara Hotels and Resorts is targeting to have 101 properties across India in the next 10 years. They currently have four hotels and resorts spread across North India and five more in the pipeline.

Skift Note: For more on Rosewood’s strategy, see this Skift piece.

Tuesday, May 9

Choice Hotels International reported solid 1Q results, better than expectations. In the good old days, when stocks actually moved up and down based on fundamentals, you could dictate the direction of CHH stock by whether they bought back stock or not. Clearly, that is not the case anymore as CHH repurchased $160 million worth of stock in 1Q but the stock still sold off today after the earnings report. CHH has 3.4 million shares left on their repurchase authorization so it is probably a good assumption there will be a repurchase authorization soon. CHH also announced they were increasing the annual dividend rate by 21%.

Deutsche Bank upped their target price on Ryman Hospitality to $128 from $126 and reiterated their Buy rating. Truist said RHP remains their favorite Lodging REIT. They upped their target price to $119 from $115.

The city of Indianapolis, Indiana will take over the financing for the long-awaited Signia by Hilton hotel at Pan Am Plaza after Kit Realty Group Trust said they could not secure funding due to the state of the market. Construction for the $510 million hotel will be funded through hotel revenue bonds and not tax increases. The hotel will be developed alongside the Indiana Convention Center’s sixth expansion. 

Cambodia is making plans to finish developing large tourist areas along its coast on the Gulf of Thailand. Chinese investors began turning Sihanoukville into a large gambling center five years ago but that ended with a ban on online gambling. Officials are now planning to complete work on more than 1,100 unfinished buildings in Sihanoukville by 2026. A new tourist area called Bay of Lights is under development nearby, due by 2028, reports Voice of America.

Viceroy Hotels & Resorts announced the appointment of Yoav Gery as Chief Development Officer.

Scandic Hotels has appointed Laura Tarkka as new country head of the Group’s operations in Finland as well as a member of Scandic’s Executive Committee. 

Skift Note: For more on Choice’s earnings, read Skift’s article: “Choice Hotels Propelled by Guests Blending Business and Leisure.”

Wednesday, May 10

Strategic Property Partners LLC plans to develop a Four Seasons hotel in Charleston, the first in South Carolina. Proposals for the project call for three different buildings to be constructed on a 1.9-acre site. The mixed-use development will also include residential condominiums and retail space. Strategic Property Partners LLC has agreed on terms with Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts to manage the planned hotel and residences. 

Four Seasons and Azure Resorts & Hotels and Luxus Developments announced a new standalone residential project in Las Vegas slated to open in 2026. Four Seasons Private Residences Las Vegas will be set within the MacDonald Highlands community, a private 11-acre oasis in Henderson, Nevada. The new project will comprise 171 high-rise residences and six standalone, family-style villas.

Choice Hotels International, Inc. announced the official start of construction on Cambria Hotel Pearl District-Portland and Cambria Hotel Hillsboro. Expected to open in Oregon in Spring 2025, this milestone marks Cambria’s entry into the Pacific Northwest. The six-story, 178-room Cambria Hotel Pearl District-Portland will be developed with HighSide Development. Evergreen Hotel Development Group is developing the four-story 115-room Cambria Hotel Hillsboro

Filippino company Ayala Land Hotels and Resorts Corp. is pushing forward with plans to increase the number of keys in its homegrown Seda-branded hotels. Ayala has reopened their El Nido and Sicogon resorts, are adding rooms in Seda Nuvali and are opening the new 532-room Seda Manila Bay this year. It will sit on top of AyalaMalls Manila Bay at the Aseana City in Paranaque. Ayala’s total hotels and resorts portfolio now stands at 4,058 rooms with another 1,504 rooms under construction.

Skift Note: Four Seasons has arrived at 126 luxury hotels and resorts and 53 branded residences over six decades. Marc Speichert, the chief commercial officer, recently said the brand is now averaging 5 to 7 openings per year. While that may seem like a lot, there are probably still fewer Four Seasons than offices of Accenture, a consultancy.

Thursday, May 11

IHG recently reported signing a Memorandum of Understanding with the Saudi Tourism Authority at the Arabian Travel Market in 2023. To expand its presence in key cities such as Riyadh, Jeddah, Madinah, Makkah, Dammam, Al Khobar and the MegaprojectsIHG is positioned to add over 10,000 additional rooms to its portfolio in the next 2-3 years.

IHG also announced it signed a management agreement with The King Abdullah Financial District Management and Development Company, a subsidiary of Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund, to open a 212-key Kimpton Riyadh in 2024.

Hyatt Hotels held an Investor Day today. They are forecasting $650 to $850 million of free cash flow by 2025 and will be 80% asset-light for their earnings mix. H said they had increased their mix of Luxury, Lifestyle and Resort rooms to 44% of the portfolio in 2022 versus 32% in 2017. They expect the acquisition of Mr & Mrs Smith will expand its brand presence in luxury. They also are strategically expanding their portfolio in upper midscale and upscale, including the recent announcement of the Hyatt Studios brand. They reinstated their dividend at $0.15 per share a quarter. Once again it was a lousy day in the stock market to have a good announcement.

Citigroup cut their its price on Airbnb to $135 from $148. It maintained its Buy rating.

Effective Thursday, the Board of Directors of Louvre Hotel Group has appointed Federico J. Gonzalez as Group CEO. From this new position, Federico will lead Louvre Hotel Group’s strategy and business. At the same time, Radisson Hotel Group’s Board of Directors has appointed Federico J. Gonzalez as Executive Vice Chairman. From this position, Federico will continue to supervise the Radisson Hotel Group. Starwood Capital and Jin Jiang International Holdings Co., Ltd. acquired Louvre Hotels in 2015. Jin Jiang is a majority stakeholder in Radisson Hotels Group. Jin Jiang, a Shanghai-based tourism powerhouse, became the majority owner of Radisson Hotel Group in late 2018. (Jin Jiang also has a 13 percent stake in Accor.) it owns Louvre Hotels Group, parent of the Golden Tulip brand. Jin Jiang has a master franchise agreement with Radisson Hotel Group that let it sign last year more than 25,000 Radisson-branded rooms in Greater China via Jin Jiang’s entities.

Skift Note: Saudi Arabia has the largest hotel construction activity in the Middle East and Africa region, followed by United Arab Emirates, according to hotel research firm STR. Saudi Arabia has 42,033 hotel rooms in the pipeline, followed by the United Arab Emirates, with 22,324 rooms, as per March 2023. For more on Radisson Hotels Group, read this strategy overview piece and this CEO interview from February.

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