The European Parliament said in a vote that U.S. citizens should be denied visa-free travel to the EU before summer because the U.S. does not allow some EU nationals to enter without a visa. For more information, click here.
Due to changing attitudes about travel to the United States, NYC & Company, New York’s tourism marketing organization, has revised its 2017 travel forecast. The company now expects 300,000 fewer international visitors than last year due to the Trump administration’s travel ban and related rhetoric. Read more here.
Websites hosted on Amazon Web Services, including Airbnb and Expedia, were disrupted for several hours yesterday afternoon while Amazon experienced a high error rate at one of its regional data centers servicing the East Coast. To read more, click here.
After a successful strong Q4, Wyndham is confident about its growth in 2017. Choice Hotels is focusing its attention on upscale brands and growth across Europe. And despite a slow Q4, Marriott has a strong pipeline for this year. For a roundup of all Q4 earnings reports from the industry’s biggest companies, click here.
Analysts at Lodging Econometrics (LE) report that at year-end 2016, Marriott had the largest pipeline in the country of any franchise company with 1,301 projects/167,641 rooms. Since its acquisition of Starwood Hotels & Resorts, Marriott has added 10 full-service brands boosting its U.S. portfolio to 25 brands and increasing its total pipeline room count by 35 percent. Their largest brand in the pipeline is Fairfield Inn which has 297 projects/28,284 rooms.
Of the total pipeline, Marriott has the most projects of any franchise company under construction with 471 projects/65,924 rooms, representing over 30 percent of all projects under construction in the U.S. Additionally, they have the most projects scheduled to start construction in the next 12 months with 705 projects/85,902 rooms. Marriott also has 125 projects/167,641 rooms in early planning.
In the 4th quarter, Marriott had 86 projects start construction and announced 197 new projects into the pipeline. Both are the highest of any other franchise company. For new hotel openings, both Marriott and Hilton opened 79 new hotels each, also at a high.
The fate of the EB-5 financing and immigration program is up in the air due to changing immigration laws, leaving many hotel developers in limbo. The program allows developers to raise capital from foreign investors who in turn can receive U.S. immigration status. For more on the future of the program, click here.