COVID-19: Hoshino’s investment fund | Marriott reopens in China

Hoshino aims to revive industry via new investment fund

Japan’s Hoshino Resorts, operator of Hoshinoya luxury hotels, is seeking opportunities to revive hotels hit by the coronavirus outbreak and a delay in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, its CEO said. The hotelier partnered with investor Risa Partners to establish a fund of as much as ¥20 billion (US$186 million) to be invested in hotels seeking new ownership. In cities, business hotels, which offer limited service compared with leisure hotels, would be a good target with the new fund as the number of such hotels has increased rapidly in the past decade, the company said.

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Marriott: All China hotels are open

Marriott International has reopened all of its hotels in China, saying its occupancy rate is now at 40%. The company gave an upbeat statement saying it has seen a recovery in business travel. Last week, Marriott, which has 350 outlets across China, said the financial impact from the pandemic has been more severe for the hotel chain than 9/11 and the 2008 financial crisis combined. Marriott chief executive Arne Sorenson said the occupancy rates at its Chinese hotels had been as low as 7% in late January when China was at its peak of cases.

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Domestic bookings could be silver lining in UK

The U.K. hotel sector’s traditionally strong domestic leisure demand bodes well for the sector’s recovery once lockdown measures from COVID-19 are fully lifted, according to the latest report from HVS on the U.K. market. Many hotels outside London typically generate more than 50% of domestic room nights from holiday makers. In the southwest of England, holidays account for 69% of domestic room nights, compared with London, where some 29% come from domestic leisure bookings. The report shows that across Europe those countries with high domestic demand will be in a stronger position to recover once lockdown measures are lifted, particularly as international travel is curtailed.

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Leading Hotels’ cleanliness initiatives

The Leading Hotels of the World (LHW) has launched a program for enhanced global cleanliness initiatives for its 430-plus global members. LHW’s “Healthy Stays Commitment” includes:

•   LHW collaborated with doctors of RemoteMD, ProHealth Environmental and a FEMA emergency response trainer to develop best practice guidelines specifically for?member?hotels

•   To certify the global portfolio of hotels meet?a higher level of cleanliness and safety, LHW partnered with a worldwide cleaning industry association, to offer facility accreditation to members

•   LHW is also developing new hygiene standards for hotel audits.?Each LHW member is assessed annually by an audit with 800 stringent criteria. These additional hygiene standards will include social distancing practices, employee access to hand sanitizer, a documented process to check employee temperature, and more

Vegas resort executives call for people to stand together

Las Vegas resort executives are calling for social change following the death of an unarmed black man in police custody in Minnesota last week. MGM Resorts International acting CEO Bill Hornbuckle and Wynn Resorts CEO Matt Maddox joined the Nevada Resort Association in putting out separate statements decrying racism following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis on May 25. Hornbuckle’s sentiments came in the form of a letter that also announced a pending “significant contribution” from MGM to the NAACP. Maddox’s statement called for people to “stand united, come together and work for change,” while also denouncing racism.

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Elsewhere: Castle managing in Waikiki

Honolulu-based Castle Resorts & Hotels added the new Bamboo Waikiki Hotel to its portfolio of hotels and resorts in Hawaii. Located in Waikiki, the Southeast Asian-inspired boutique hotel offers standard city view rooms, suites with kitchenettes and one-bedroom suites equipped with full kitchens and private lanai. The property is undergoing a US$5 million renovation, which will be completed by the fall of 2020.