Post-recovery travel trends: Post-recovery travel has changed, with “revenge travel” — with the purpose of making up for lost time — emerging as a phenomenon and two-thirds of respondents stating that travel will return to pre-pandemic levels by the end of 2024, revealed the findings of the ‘Mapping Travel’s New Normal’ study commissioned by Sabre Corp., Southlake, Texas, and carried out by Munich-based management consultancy Dr. Fried & Partners. One-third of the respondents, decision makers from airlines and travel agencies, expect travel to return to pre-COVID levels in 2025 or beyond. Around 68% of travel leaders predicted a higher spend from consumers on their future travel plans. About 82% of airline executives expected the combination of leisure and business to be more prominent after recovery. More than half of the agencies said they were spending more time looking into new tools, technologies and services, a particular area of focus in APAC, for 71% of responding agencies. About 92% of the agencies said they sought the support of travel technology partners to develop a more seamless experience, while 89% said they wanted tools to help personalize travel. Key trends identified by agencies included the significance of connected and organized trips to eliminate travel complexities for customers, the existing prominence of domestic and regional travel and the challenges and opportunities for business travel recovery. Key trends identified by airlines included rising consumer bookings protection, growth of “bleisure” as a catalyst for potential corporate travel recovery and offering more sustainable flight options to meet demands.
EOS Hospitality adds 2 in Florida Keys: EOS Hospitality, New York City, will manage Havana Cabana at Key West and Tranquility Bay Beachfront Hotel and Resort in the Florida Keys. Both the properties are owned by Bethesda, Maryland-based DiamondRock Hospitality Co. DiamondRock owns 31 hotels with more than 10,000 rooms. The 106-key Havana Cabana at Key West includes the largest pool in Key West with cabanas, a food truck and a pool bar. The Tranquility Bay Beachfront Hotel and Resort in Marathon, Florida, consists of 87 private beach houses and 16 guest rooms, a 2.5-acre private beach and three pools. EOS Hospitality owns and operates Isla Bella Beach Resort in Marathon and manages Oceans Edge Resort & Marina in Key West, Florida. The company operates a portfolio of more than 40 hotels totaling 6,000 keys.
Explosion, death at Havana hotel: As of early Monday morning, at least 30 people were reported dead and some 70 were injured as a result of a Friday afternoon explosion that rocked the iconic 96-room Hotel Saratoga in Old Havana, Cuba. The explosion was reportedly caused by a gas leak at the luxury hotel, which has been closed due to the pandemic and was reportedly set to reopen on May 10.
TFE Hotels announces 3 openings: TFE Hotels, Sydney, will grow the portfolio of its homegrown Adina and Vibe brands with three new hotels that will open in Melbourne, Perth and Adelaide in the next 12 months. TFE will open the Adina Apartment Hotel Pentridge Melbourne in Q3 2022, which will be a part of the Pentridge Prison B-Division mixed-use lifestyle site. The site also includes residential apartments, dining and shopping venues, cinema, event space and 125 key MICE and Event hotel. An additional 19 heritage suites have been added to the former Division B section offering guests the opportunity to stay in historic converted prison cells. The 18-story, 123-room Vibe Hotel Adelaide will open in early 2023. It will include restaurants and bars on the ground floor with another restaurant planned on the hotel’s top floor. In Perth, the 142-room Adina Apartment Hotel Fremantle Perth will open in Q3 2024, comprised of studios, one-bedroom apartments and series of interconnecting rooms that will become two-bedroom apartments. These three properties are part of the 12 hotels in TFE’s pipeline, with three slated to open in Europe and 10 in Australia in the next few years, including a new Adina in Brisbane and A by Adina and Collection hotels in Melbourne.
Service delivery set for changes: Service delivery is set to see radical reinvention, fueled by new technologies, especially Artificial Intelligence. But it will also be enabled by people, whose aspirations and attitudes have changed during the pandemic, revealed a study by McKinsey & Co. As per the study, four trends are redefining excellence in service operations. The post-pandemic era has pushed two other service operations issues to the top of the senior-management agenda. The uneven global economic recovery means that several organizations are seeing rapid growth in demand along with increased risk and volatility. The pandemic has also transformed workplaces. As per a global survey of 10,000 employees at companies with at least 100 employees, the percentage of workers using online collaboration methods jumped from 55% in 2019 to almost 80% in 2021. Many service companies are likely to adopt a hybrid approach, using a combination of on-site, flexible and remote working models.
Russian outbound tourism plummets: Russian outbound tourism, which has already been impacted by the pandemic, has declined further due to Russia’s military aggression in Ukraine, showed latest data from ForwardKeys. In the week before the war started (February 18), outbound international air tickets from Russia were 42% of the pre-COVID levels, which fell to 19% in the week immediately after the invasion (February 25). Flight bookings have been falling since then and are currently hovering at around 15%. Due to war-related sanctions on civil aviation, Russians cannot book flights to most of their preferred destinations in the West are instead booking trips to the Middle East and Asia. An analysis of flight bookings made between February 24 and April 27 revealed that the top five destinations for travel between May and August (in order of resilience) were Sri Lanka, the Maldives, Kyrgyzstan, Turkey and the U.A.E. Bookings to Sri Lanka are currently 85% ahead of pre-pandemic levels, to the Maldives 1% behind, to Kyrgyzstan 11% behind, to Turkey 36% behind and to the U.A.E. 49% behind. Sri Lanka’s position at the top, however, is not the correct reflection of the island’s attractiveness as a destination and instead is a consequence of bombings, which scared away visitors in 2019. An analysis of the recent tickets booked to Turkey and the U.A.E. showed that a significant portion were affluent Russians going on holiday as the sale of premium cabin seats tripled compared to 2019. The average trip duration for premium travelers was 12 nights in Turkey and seven nights in the U.A.E.
Arbor Lodging adds to Boston portfolio: Arbor Lodging Partners, Chicago, Illinois, has acquired its second hotel in Boston, Massachusetts, the Hilton Garden Inn Boston-Burlington. The hotel was acquired through a joint venture with Wayne, Pennsylvania-based Argosy Real Estate Partners. The hotel marks Arbor’s eighth Hilton Garden Inn. The 180-key hotel is located within the country’s biggest life science and technology hubs and will undergo a comprehensive renovation that will see upgrades to the rooms, bathrooms, building’s exterior, lobby, restaurant, pool and other common areas. Arbor recently acquired the Hilton Garden Inn Ann Arbor and the TownePlace Suites by Marriott Ann Arbor. Arbor currently owns and operates more than 38 hotels across the U.S.