Conversions key for IHG growth

Image © IHG Hotels & Resorts
Of its total pipeline count, IHG says more than 40% is already under construction. The mix by segment is 52% midscale, and 48% in upscale and luxury.

InterContinental Hotels started 2024 with a robust global development pipeline, which it grew to 2,016 hotels with 297,000 rooms, up 5.5% year on year.

The statistics were revealed as the company declared full year 2023 results with net portfolio growth during the year of 3.8%. It opened 275 hotels through the year, taking its global presence to 6,363 hotels and 946,000 rooms. The year finished strongly with 117 hotels opened in the final quarter, one of its best quarters for growth on record.

Garner off to a strong start

Conversions of hotels from other brands now account for more than one third of signings and openings. The company expects this volume to grow, as in September 2023 it launched Garner, a new brand focused strongly on conversions. By year end, the brand had signed seven sites, and opened two properties, in Macon and Oklahoma City. It is now expanding globally, and in January 2024 IHG signed to convert three hotels in Osaka, Japan to the Garner brand. Owner Axe Management Partners will refurbish the properties ahead of a relaunch in the second half of 2024.

The group’s Voco brand, launched in 2018, is an upscale conversion opportunity for hotel owners, that has gained considerable traction and around three quarters of signings to the brand are for existing properties looking to change up. Voco Sarasota and Voco Royalty Puebla Downtown in Mexico are Stateside additions for the brand in 2024.

Upcoming additions include Voco in Belfast, Northern Ireland, due to open in 2024, and in the UK, 2024 will see Voco appear in Salisbury, Leicester, Manchester and Folkestone. In China, Voco Suites Shanghai Hongqiao CBD and Voco Lianyungang Haizhou Bay are in planning. In January, IHG signalled its return to the Swedish hotel market, signing Voco Stockholm Kista, a 201 room office conversion expected to open its doors in the second half of 2024, and also signed Voco & Suites Jeddah, Saudia Arabia due to launch in September 2024.

Collection brand builds traction

Also drawing signings is IHG’s Vignette Collection, which allows hotels with distinctly individual character to benefit from the distribution and marketing power of the global hotel group. Recent signings include the Dinso Resort & Villas Koh Chang in Thailand, which will join following refurbishment; and Phuket Nai Yang Beach, set to join the brand in 2028. Also joining Vignette will be the 133 room The Halyard in Liverpool, UK.