voco tops site century as rapid expansion continues

Pictured: voco Osaka Central guestroom.
IHG Hotels & Resorts’ upscale voco brand has reached the milestone of 100 opened or signed properties globally.

In just five years the line has become the fastest growing within the major hotel group’s premium collection.

Conversion driver

Currently there are vocos in 18 countries and new-to-market hotels launching in Japan, Kenya, Spain and India. With 46 open hotels and 55 projects in the pipeline, voco continues to be a key driver of IHG’s overall growth in the conversion space.

IHG believes the rapid expansion of the upscale conversion brand reflects the strength of its enterprise platform through which hotel owners can grow their business by being part of IHG’s distribution channels.

Owner vision

With a design and operational framework conducive to conversion, the brand is aimed at empowering owners to carry through their own vision for each property, ensuring its legacy and historical connections to the surrounding community remain strong.

Three quarters of voco signings are conversions and the soft brand should require a lower capital outlay and has a flexible brand identity to ensure a speedy and seamless conversion process.

Brand hallmarks

The brand’s three hallmarks – ‘come on in’, ‘me time’, and ‘voco life’ – are woven into the hotels’ DNA. From a swift check-in and a locally inspired welcome treat upon arrival to comfy beds, and vibrant bar and restaurant spaces, voco should bring a distinctive charm to every stay.

The strand was built on sustainability, with the hotels having 100% recycled pillow and duvet fillings and refillable, plant-based bathroom amenities. The sites also support local sustainability initiatives at individual hotels such as estate-grown vegetables at Australia’s voco Kirkton Park Hunter Valley or the Hotels for Trees programme at voco The Hague, where a tree is planted for every night a guest chooses not to have their room cleaned.

Phenomenal growth

Julie Cheesman, head of voco hotels at IHG Hotels & Resorts, said: “The voco brand has grown at a phenomenal pace over the last five years and is an integral part of IHG’s growing family of 18 brands comprising over 6,000 global hotels, and supported by the industry-leading IHG One Rewards loyalty programme.

“voco is popular with hotel owners around the world as they can get fast access to our enterprise platform and benefit from the brand’s high levels of guest satisfaction globally. As the global expansion of voco continues, we are excited to remain on track to grow to 200 voco hotels around the world within 10 years since launch.”

New markets

Last year, voco expanded into new markets including southeast Asia with voco Orchard Singapore; Africa with voco Johannesburg Rosebank and Latin America with voco Guadalajara Neruda in Mexico.

Since then, the brand has continued to grow in key markets with its eighth hotel in Greater China with voco Hefei Binhu; sixth hotel in the US with voco Chicago Downtown, its fourth in Australasia with voco Brisbane City Centre and its third in Dubai with voco Dubai The Palm.

This year’s slate

Notable voco openings in 2023 include Lythe Hill Hotel in Surrey, in the UK, which will complete its rebrand to voco Lythe Hill Hotel and Spa in 2023. The Tudor property will feature 99 bedrooms plus an oak-beamed restaurant, gym and spa.

Opening in early summer, voco Osaka Central will be the first voco property to open in Japan. Conveniently situated in central Osaka, the hotel will provide inspired design, dining and sustainable touches like aerated shower heads, eco bedding and filtered water. The hotel lobby and restaurant décor will be modern and contemporary whilst including historical elements from the original Kyomachi building and some of the 193 bedrooms will have Tatami mats.

Vietnam debut

The first voco in Vietnam will open later this year with voco Ma Belle Danang. The hotel is located close to My Khe Beach and just 20 minutes’ drive from Danang International Airport. Its 290 guestrooms will have views of the coastline or cityscape, and facilities include a spa, rooftop infinity pool and bar, as well as a lobby lounge and all-day dining restaurant.

In New York, voco Fiorello – La Guardia East is set to open in Flushing, NY this summer. The hotel is due to have 116 rooms and is the third voco signing by the same owner.

Located in northern Paris, voco Paris Porte De Clichy is due to open this summer after its conversion from a Holiday Inn property. The hotel will be one of voco’s flagship properties, with particular attention being paid to the use of sustainable materials. The 264-key property  will feature several upscale food and beverage outlets.