IHG's avid™ hotels is now franchise ready in Canada

2017-12-14

TORONTO, Dec. 6, 2017 /CNW/ - IHG ®  (InterContinental Hotels Group) announces that its new high-quality midscale brand, avid™ hotels, is officially available for licensing in Canada. Coinciding with the brand's first groundbreaking ceremony taking place today in Oklahoma City, this announcement signals a significant opportunity for IHG and its Canadian family of owners and further demonstrates the brand's rapid start and growth potential.

The avid hotels brand is designed for travelers 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 percent less than IHG's industry-leading Holiday Inn Express ®  brand.

Jonathan Lund, Regional Vice President, Franchise Performance Support, Canada, IHG, said: "IHG's presence in Canadahas been growing two times faster than the industry average in the region with 12 new Canadian properties opening next year and 31 additional hotels in the pipeline. Now, with the introduction of avid hotels, we're set to extend IHG's leadership position in the midscale segment. With over 14 million potential customers looking for the type of hospitality avid hotels will offer, this new brand represents a significant business opportunity for Canadian owners."

Owners have already expressed interest in avid hotels, demonstrating the strong demand and great potential for the brand in the midscale market segment. Since the brand first became available for franchising in the United States, IHG has received more than 100 franchise applications, including 34 which have already been converted to signed deals for avid hotels locations across the U.S. Located in Oklahoma, the first avid hotels property began construction just eight weeks after the brand was launched and is anticipated to open in Q3 2018, months ahead of original projections.

Stuart Laurie, Regional Director, Midscale Franchising, Canada, IHG, added: "Since the brand launched in the U.S. with strong demand, Canadian owners have continued to express interest in developing avid hotels. We know this brand reaches a vastly underserved segment of travelers in the U.S., and are confident that the avid hotels experience will strongly resonate with Canadian travelers while providing a scalable solution for owners."  Brand features include:

- avid hotels logo illustrates the brand's confident and modern design. In its confident and refreshing colors of red and aqua, the logo features a signature checkmark, which acts as a stamp of confidence that avid hotels will deliver an unrivaled experience. This brand is the first to launch using IHG's master brand mark – An IHG ®  Hotel – in communications and building signage, underlining its strength as part of one of the world's leading hotel companies.

  - Exterior and public space renderings for avid hotels bring the brand experience to life. 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, and guests will benefit from the power of IHG ®  Rewards Club at avid hotels.

- Guest room renderings 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 a fresh and bright design. Each guest room will also offer a dedicated workspace and ample open, easy-to- use storage. 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. The first 100 signed license agreements across the U.S. and Canada will be eligible for a two percent fee discount in year one and one percent fee discount in year two (2/1 royalty fee reduction).

About avid™ hotels The newest brand from IHG, avid hotels was designed for travelers 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 fair price. To ensure avid hotels meets the needs of today's midscale traveler, a set of fundamental values define all touch points of the brand: taking a new approach to designing everyday travel; appreciating the value of guests' every hard- earned dollar and being direct, honest and clear. All avid hotels will be new-build construction and feature modern, comfortable design, guest rooms designed for sound- sleep, a focused, high-quality breakfast consisting of name-brand options and will leverage the latest technology to enable a seamless experience for guests. The avid hotels brand launched in 2017 and expects to open its first property by the end of Q3 2018. To learn more about the avid hotels brand, visit avidhotels.com and find us on social media: facebook.com/avidhotels, twitter.com/avidhotel and instagram.com/avidhotels/.

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