IHG dropped more hotels than it opened in the first quarter

May 9, 2021

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IHG is serious about closing hotels that don’t fit its brand standards.

In its first-quarter earnings report, the major hotel chain announced that it removed roughly 9,500 hotel rooms from its management, representing a total of nearly 61 hotels.

Half of the closures — 31 hotels — were at Holiday Inn or Crowne Plaza properties in the Americas and Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

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In total, the Denham, U.K.-based chain closed more hotels than it opened in the first quarter. IHG welcomed 56 hotels with a total of 7,300 rooms to its portfolio from January to March of this year.

Paul Edgecliffe-Johnson, chief financial officer and group head of strategy for IHG, cited the chain’s “focus on quality and consistency” as the reason for these removals. IHG didn’t list the individual hotels that were booted from the chain in its financial disclosures.

(Photo courtesy of the Crowne Plaza London – Kings Cross)

Later in the call, Edgecliffe-Johnson expounded on the removals, noting that “this is the right time for us to have the conversations with the owners. Guest expectations have changed. And so while over some years, we have been working with the owners to take out the hotels in the system that haven’t met our vision for the brand as they move forward and not fulfilling on guest expectations, we’re having to have conversations with owners around the future of their properties with us.”

Related: How to pick the right hotel chain for you

Hotel chains have standards for individual brands that must be followed by ownership — or risk getting booted from management. By eliminating the bad apples, IHG is working towards elevating the perception of its individual brands, like Holiday Inn and Crowne Plaza.

Featured photo courtesy of IHG

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