Garner expands across EMEAA

A new multi-hotel signing in Germany has catapulted forward the growth of IHG latest conversion brand, Garner, giving it an immediate strong presence in the German market.

Garner, the new midscale conversion brand from IHG Hotels & Resorts, is building considerable momentum as the group works towards a medium target of having at least 500 hotels open under the brand within its first decade.

Launched in 2023 with its first opening in Seattle, the brand is now being offered to hotel owners in many international markets, targeting those keen to convert in a flexible way to being part of the IHG distribution system. Today there are three Garner hotels open, with a pipeline that is growing fast.

Building in Japan

In January 2024, IHG signed a letter of intent with Japanese hotel owners Axe Management Partners, aiming to convert three hotels in Osaka, Japan to the Garner brand. The first of these will likely relaunch in the second half of 2024, and in total the trio will add more than 500 rooms of inventory IHG’s Japanese presence. The properties will each be refurbished ahead of their switch, with improvements to the hotel’s common spaces, lounge and cafe.

In April 2024, the brand’s progress took a significant step forward, with the signing of a deal in Germany which will see local operator Novum Hospitality rebrand its portfolio of more than 100 hotels, predominantly in Germany, to various IHG brands. The collaboration will include 56 hotels, mostly open but also including some planned pipeline builds, switching to the Garner brand. These will include hotels currently trading under Novum’s Yggotel, Select and Novum brands.

The collaboration agreement with Novum will also see more than 50 other hotels converted to the established Holiday Inn brand across Germany. Also switching brands will be several extended stay hotels in the Novum group portfolio, which will be rebranded a Candlewood Suites properties.

Conversions to the fore

In the current tough economic environment, with interest rates high and development finance hard to arrange, hotel groups are seeing more opportunities to grow their portfolios by signing conversions. IHG says more than half of its openings across EMEAA in 2023 were conversion deals, and those deals often move from signing to reopening under a new brand in a matter of months.