Mar102015

Experts evaluate four new hotel brands. Radisson Red thumbs up. Moxy thumbs down.

Hotel News Now has insight from the 18th International Hotel Investment Forum with expert critiques of four new hotel brands geared for millennial guests. Marriott Moxy, Radisson Red, Jumeirah Group’s Venu and Mangalis Hotel Group Yaas are four new hotel brands being offered to hotel investors.

I attended a hotel investment conference at JW Marriott LA Live Los Angeles two years ago and gained some insight to the hotel industry brand development process. Hotel chains offer sessions and sales booths for potential hotel investors with details on the cost to build hotels and management contract fees. Securing hotel construction finance loans from the banks is made easier when the project is aligned with a major hotel chain like Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group, Marriott and Jumeirah.

Marriott Moxy Hotels

Moxy Hotels by Marriott currently has one hotel property at Milan Airport MXP Italy. Moxy Milan is Marriott Rewards category 2 at 10,000 points per night and dropping to category 1 for 7,500 points on March 19, 2015.

This is how the Moxy Hotel Milan is advertised on the website:

We’ve got this:
• Laid-back lounge
• Meeting spaces
• 24/7 food and drinks
• A stocked bar

Welcome to your room. Kick off your heels (or whatever), slip into something comfortable, and tuck into the softest bed with front row seats to your 42” TV. It connects to just about any device, so go ahead and stream away. Oh, and there’s free Wi-Fi. Yep, free.

The website for Moxy Milan only shows one photo of a standard room.

Moxy Milan room photo

The room looks like a basic bed with large TV and several easily accessible electrical outlets on the wall.

There appears to be very little differentiating this room from a standard room in Starwood’s Aloft Hotels, except for a less vibrant color scheme.

The experts said this brand will likely succeed with hotel industry giant Marriott’s backing, but the design lacks hipness.

Marriott plans significant growth for Moxy Hotels in Europe by 2020.

Loyalty TravelerMarriott to Moxy and Courtyard Europe (March 3, 2015)

Radisson Red by Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group

Carslon Rezidor Hotel Group announced Radisson Red at their February 2014 annual Radisson conference. The idea is the same as Moxy, offer a relatively low cost hotel for investors with a design geared for millennials.

Radisson Red will be the new upscale, lifestyle brand launching in 2015. Think something on the lines of Starwood’s Aloft where the lobby is a place to play and hear music and the room is designed for function.

The hotel industry is gearing its growth for the millennial market. Radisson Red is the brand entry for Club Carlson members.

Loyalty Traveler Radisson Red and Quorvus Collection to be two new Carlson Rezidor hotel brands Feb 19, 2014

There are no Radisson Red hotels open yet, so the website is simply design mark-ups and marketing speak.

The hotel industry experts liked the Radisson Red concept for its character that allows it to stand out from the myriad of lifestyle hotel brands launched in recent years.

This is how Radisson Red is described on their website

WE ARE

RED IS MORE THAN AN IDEA. SOME WOULD SAY WE ARE RE-INTERPRETING THE GUEST EXPERIENCE, AND WE START IT WITH A WOW: THE SENSE OF ARRIVAL IS A GALLERY, IN THOSE EYES IT’S ARTISTIC, ENERGETIC AND PROACTIVE, IN OUR EYES IT IS NATURAL, HUMBLE, WELCOMING AND JUST FEELS RIGHT. THERE’S A GREAT BAR AND DELI JUST BEYOND, SIMPLE FOOD AND DRINK DONE REALLY WELL, ALL TRULY CONNECTED. SPACE TO WORK, SPACE TO PLAY, SPACE TO BE SOCIAL, IF THAT’S WHAT YOU WANT, SHOP, BROWSE, ADMIRE, WATCH, MINGLE, MEET, SPACE TO SIMPLY BE WHOMEVER YOU WANT TO BE. AND THE ROOMS MATCH – STYLISH AND MULTI-FUNCTIONAL – DESIGNED FOR WHAT YOU NEED FROM A HOTEL, HOW YOU WANT TO USE A HOTEL, HOW YOU WANT TO LIVE IN A HOTEL, WHERE THE WALLS ARE A CANVAS FOR MOVIES, FOR ART, FORWORK, FOR HOW YOU WANT THEM TO BE, HOW YOU WANT TO BE, HOW YOU WANT YOUR SPACE TO BE. INCLUDING A PRETTY SERIOUS PLACE TO WORK OUT TOO, IF THATS YOUR GIG. WELCOME TO RADISSON RED. 24/7.

Radisson Red

The room design shown on the website is a mock-up. There are no photos of actual hotel rooms yet. Carlson’s first Radisson Red hotel is scheduled to open with 300-room Radisson Red Shenyang Hunnan in 2016. Carlson plans to open 60 Radisson Red hotels by 2020 with half in Asia Pacific market.

Radisson Red room design

Venu by Jumeriah Group

Venu is probably the most interesting new hotel brand of these. The design is marketed for the affluent millennial seeking a modern Starwood W-like hotel experience. Hotel industry experts liked the concept as something fresh and appealing.

VENU is inspired by the spirit of Dubai: bold, ambitious, energetic and cosmopolitan, infused with a can-do attitude and a powerful blend of style and substance. This is reflected in the design of the new brand’s logo. It is simple and unpretentious, modern and creative, offering a sense that everyone who visits, stays at or works within a VENU space has the freedom to write their own story, create their own narrative, build their own scene.
The essence of the new brand is that of a ‘social catalyst’ – a social place where good things happen, where people feel welcome and at ease, surrounded by a crowd they love, a smooth machine that offers everything they need and nothing they don’t.

Jumeirah Group – Venu brand announcement

The first property planned for Dubai is Venu Bluewaters Island Hotel, scheduled to open in 2017. Venu was originally announced in 2010 and then put on hold for four years due to global financial crisis.

I did not find any room design images for Venu.

Yaas by Mangalis Hotel Group

Yaas by Mangalis Hotel Group is a budget hotel design for Africa. The company is seeking to penetrate Africa with branded hotels on a continent where only 6% of hotels are branded. Mangalis Hotel Group has 16 hotel projects with 2,400 rooms in 13 African countries. The focus of Yaas will be basic accommodation initially focused on East Africa countries.

Created with the budget traveler in mind, the hotels will be located near city centers, airports, train stations and main highways, Jacquin said.

Hotel News Now – Mangalis on a mission to blanket Africa

Oct 14, 2014.

The experts gave Yaas a thumbs down. The rooms were too small and public spaces too institutional, in need of better design.

Do millennial travelers need hotel babysitters?

A couple of weeks ago I thought about writing an article on Marriott Moxy and Hyatt Centric to pose the question, “Do millennials need babysitters?”

The hotel industry trending design concept is based around attracting millennials to major hotel chains through new upscale small basic room hotels with large public social spaces. The concept seems to be that millennials do not need personal space within the hotel room. Provide a bed, bathroom and TV with lots of electrical outlets around the room and the millennial will be content with their personal electronic device pleasures.

Hotel public spaces are for socializing and meeting people or perhaps simply a place to be seated around other people while you pursue your own self-interests in public. The focus on the public space suggests to me a hotel industry marketing ploy to generate more revenue per stay from hotel guests through purchases at the hotel store, restaurant and bar.

PEW Research Center survey cites millennials state use of technology as the greatest differentiator for millennials from other generational cohorts.

Cell phone check-in and key entry with the ability to order food and drinks by phone or a bar counter iPad are hotel trends that have emerged in the past couple of years.

Moxy, Radisson Red, Hyatt Centric, Venu, Even, Aloft, Hyatt Place. Create upper midscale hotel brands and market them as hip, fun and social places to stay.

Is there truly a significant difference between new hotel brands and old hotel brands? Besides more electrical outlets.

About Ric Garrido

Ric Garrido of Monterey, California started Loyalty Traveler in 2006 for traveler education on hotel and air travel, primarily using frequent flyer and frequent guest loyalty programs for bargain travel. Loyalty Traveler joined BoardingArea.com in 2008.

More articles by Ric Garrido »

Comments

  1. This article resonated with me http://www.travelagentcentral.com/editors-letter/column-arent-we-all-millennials

    “Millennial is the buzzword these days, but all the new lifestyle hotel product isn’t being developed solely for this age group; it’s for all evolving humans whose new definition of social is to sit silently amongst others in a hotel lobby without any intention of speaking to anyone. Little contact is made unless an amazing cultural synergy arises between you and your neighbor, say, if you both realize you have the latest version of the MacBook Air, which prompts you to start grinning at each other. Hotels are making their lobbies such gathering spots, ensuring that coffee and wine are readily available at the appropriate time of day and that there’s a local vibe to the place. Even more important amenities include an abundance of conveniently placed electrical outlets and of course, free Wi-Fi. These things appeal to virtually every traveler — not just to 18 to 35 year olds.”

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