Hotel Online  Special Report

 Hyatt Corporation Will Purchase the 143-unit AmeriSuites
Chain from Affiliates of The Blackstone Group;
Plans to Invest $150 million to Create New Brand
Headed by Jim Abrahamson and Mike Leven


CHICAGO - Dec. 9, 2004 -- Hyatt Corporation, the worldwide hotel management and real estate development company, announced today that it will purchase the 143-unit AmeriSuites hotel chain from affiliates of The Blackstone Group. Definitive agreements have been concluded and the transaction is expected to close in early January. Terms of the deal have not been disclosed.

The move is a strategic component of the process resulting in the formation of Global Hyatt Corporation, a new parent company over Hyatt Hotels Corporation (domestic US, Canada and Caribbean hotel operations), Hyatt International Corporation (international hotel operations), Hyatt Equities (hotel ownership) and Hyatt Vacation Club, Inc. (timeshare). According to Thomas Pritzker, chairman and CEO of Hyatt Corp, the formation of the new umbrella company will be completed by December 31, 2004. Mr. Pritzker will also serve as chairman and CEO of Global Hyatt.

AmeriSuites is a leading all-suite, upscale limited service hotel brand. Hyatt's acquisition of AmeriSuites will enable it to ultimately create a new Hyatt brand that is fully distinguishable from its existing portfolio of 214 upper upscale and luxury hotels in 43 countries around the world. According to Pritzker, it is Hyatt's intention that the AmeriSuites chain will become the upscale limited service leader in performance and profitability by means of new segment-appropriate product and service standards.

"A primary objective of the Global Hyatt process is to better utilize the power of the Hyatt brand, infrastructure, distribution network and talents of our people more intensively to increase earnings growth without compromising the value of our brand," Pritzker said. "The addition of this leading, upscale limited service entity will enable us to create a new brand extension that will benefit the Hyatt brand and the owners and customers of our existing hotels, as well as the owners, franchisees and customers of AmeriSuites."

Nicholas Pritzker, chairman of Hyatt Development Corp., who will also serve as vice chairman and director of Global Hyatt, said, "Consistent with our family's tradition, we believe this acquisition represents a key strategic opportunity for growth and profitability for Hyatt. The future growth of AmeriSuites will complement the continuing growth of Hyatt's full-service hotel portfolio."

Following its acquisition of AmeriSuites, Hyatt plans to invest more than $150 million in capital expenditures and related brand and marketing innovations that will translate appropriate elements of "the Hyatt Touch" into the upscale limited service arena. The new brand will be created following completion of that program.

"Within its category, we expect this new segment of our business to reflect Hyatt's reputation for high quality customer experiences and accommodations, innovation and leading-edge technology," said Doug Geoga, Hyatt's president who will also serve as president of Global Hyatt Corp. "Following the repositioning, the AmeriSuites hotels will carry a new Hyatt brand, communicating that segment leading position and allowing the chain to deliver outstanding value to its customers and superior economics to the owners of its hotels."

According to Geoga, the addition of the AmeriSuites product will also extend Hyatt's distribution, leading to improved customer loyalty and greater breadth of the company's Gold Passport frequency program, and allow Hyatt's global sales force to sell more effectively by offering accommodations at multiple tiers of the market and increasing the number of destinations that Hyatt serves.

"Growth potential in the upscale limited service category is significant both in the U.S. and internationally," said Steve Goldman, Hyatt's executive vice president of acquisitions and development, who will also serve in that capacity for Global Hyatt. "Hyatt will analyze opportunities for expanding the new brand in strategic markets around the world."

A senior management team led by industry veterans Jim Abrahamson and Mike Leven will effectuate the AmeriSuites strategy for Hyatt.

"This team will build on the strength of Hyatt's management depth and experience and the strong management capabilities of the existing AmeriSuites organization," Geoga said.

Abrahamson will be responsible for all aspects of the AmeriSuites business. Before joining Hyatt, he was president of Baymont Inns and Woodfield Suites, and also spent 13 years with Hilton in its franchising, development and operating groups. Among his other responsibilities at Hilton, Abrahamson led the creation, development, implementation and franchising of Hilton Garden Inns.

Leven is founder, CEO and president of U.S. Franchise Systems (USFS), a Hyatt subsidiary with nearly 500 hotel franchises currently open or under construction. Leven, who has become an industry icon during his 44-year hospitality career, previously served as president and chief operating officer of Holiday Inn Worldwide and as president of Days Inn of America. The capabilities of Leven and his USFS team will be used by Hyatt to assure the provision of high quality franchise services to AmeriSuites franchisees.

It is anticipated that by second quarter 2005, AmeriSuites customers will be able to participate in Hyatt's Gold Passport loyalty program through their stays at AmeriSuites. Until then, they will continue to participate in the Prime Rewards program. AmeriSuites will also be included in Hyatt's global sales efforts in the future.

The brands

AmeriSuites is a leading, 143-hotel (18,000 rooms) all-suite brand in 32 states that serves the upscale limited service segment. It has consistently received numerous awards and recognition from national US publications. AmeriSuites hotels offer attractively designed suites with upscale amenities such as in-room microwaves and refrigerators, high-speed internet access, complimentary hot breakfast daily, fitness centers and pools, business centers and meeting rooms.

Hyatt branded hotels presently consist of 214 upper upscale and luxury full service hotels under the Hyatt, Hyatt Regency, Grand Hyatt and Park Hyatt names.

U.S. Franchise Systems, a Hyatt subsidiary, includes among its franchised brands Hawthorn Suites hotels which serve the mid-scale and upscale extended stay market. Other USFS brands include Microtel Inns & Suites and America's Best Inns & Suites. Currently, there are nearly 500 USFS franchise hotels open or under construction.

In addition, the Hyatt Vacation Club, Hyatt's interval ownership company, presently includes 11 destinations within the United States and Puerto Rico.

About Global Hyatt

Two years ago, Hyatt began a major revamp of the company which focused on enhancing the value it brings to its customers and shareholders. The "Global Hyatt process" as it is called, involves four components:

-- Reorganization of corporate structure

-- Restructure of the organization

-- Service and product enhancements

-- Growth

Prior to the creation of Global Hyatt Corporation on December 31, 2004, Hyatt's assets were not held under a single holding company. Global Hyatt has consolidated all of the Pritzker family's hospitality assets under one corporation, with one balance sheet, and one management structure focused solely on hospitality. Global Hyatt will enhance Hyatt's ability to obtain cost effective financing for its current businesses, future growth and future acquisitions, thus adding significant new shareholder value and accelerating the rate of earnings growth.

This reorganization has been a key driver in improved customer focus, enhanced product consistency and worldwide growth on a global basis.

Internally, the consolidation of functions including finance, information technology, distribution management and development has led to better resource allocation and improved decision-making. Hyatt is also now able to draw on the best human talents of its entire enterprise for each need of the organization.

Progress of Global Hyatt's service and product initiatives

-- Hyatt has updated its hotel product and service standards on a global basis. Renovation programs in various phases at Hyatt hotels will involve the expenditure of over $500 million on capital improvements worldwide beginning in 2005, using its owned hotels as models. Innovations such as the new Grand Bed are being incorporated into hotel renovations. For example, the company-owned Grand Hyatt New York -- a 1311-room landmark property at Grand Central Station, recently completed a $60 million renovation which included the formal debut of Hyatt's new Grand Bed.

-- Following a successful pilot phase of supplementing traditional face-to-face check-in with automated, self-service check-in kiosks, Hyatt plans to extend the service to all US hotels by the end of 2005 and will be the first hotel company to do so.

-- Hyatt recently announced an industry-leading partnership with T-Mobile, giving guests wireless access in most Hyatt hotels in the United States in 2004. Hyatt will offer high-speed wireless access in the USA chain-wide in 2005.

-- Hyatt's market visibility is being raised worldwide through the company's new television brand advertising campaign and the new worldwide identity program recently introduced for the Gold Passport loyalty program. Hyatt has significantly increased its marketing expenditures, launching its first major television advertising campaign in over a decade. The $20 million campaign made its US debut in October, followed by an international launch in late November of this year. The campaign is scheduled to continue throughout 2005 on television and in print.

-- In the recently announced 2004 Brandweek Customer Loyalty Award Survey, Hyatt outranked all hotel brands in customer loyalty and earned placement within the "Top 10" among all global brands.

Growth of Global Hyatt Corporation

-- Global Hyatt's growth component embraces a number of areas that will drive growth in both traditional Hyatt branded products and in products outside of Hyatt's traditional segment of the hotel industry.

-- Hyatt currently has 27 hotels (8000 rooms) under development in 15 countries. Projects are presently slated for development or are under construction in destinations including Seoul, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Saigon, Dubai, St. Petersburg, Buenos Aires, Cairo, Marbela (Spain), Miami, Dallas and Denver.

-- Hyatt is fast becoming one of the largest hotel operators in China, with new projects underway in Beijing (both Park Hyatt and Hyatt Regency), Guangdong, Guangzhou, Hangzhou, Macau, Nanjing, Ningbo, Hainan Island and Shanghai.

-- As one of the largest destination spa operators in the world, Hyatt's prestigious portfolio includes such world-renowned spas as Plateau at the Grand Hyatt Hong Kong, Stillwater Spa at Park Hyatt Toronto, Anara Spa at Hyatt Regency Kauai Resort & Spa, Nagomi Spa at Grand Hyatt Tokyo and Spa La Manga Club at Hyatt Regency La Manga (Murcia, Spain). Six new spas are due to open in 2005, including a new spa at Hyatt Regency Scottsdale Resort at Gainey Ranch.

-- The acquisition of AmeriSuites provides an additional source of distribution and earnings growth.

-- Future acquisitions will be considered under circumstances where the acquisition benefits both the acquired assets and the existing Hyatt chain.

Currently, there are 214 Hyatt hotels and resorts in 43 countries around the world.

AmeriSuites' History

1990 - July: First AmeriSuites hotel is opened at the Gwinnett Mall in Duluth, GA (Atlanta market).

1991 - Prime Hospitality Corp. enters into a development agreement with ShoLodge, Inc whereby ShoLodge will complete construction of three AmeriSuites in progress and assume management of three existing hotels.

1992 - Prime and ShoLodge enter into a joint venture agreement to jointly develop an additional six AmeriSuites, to be managed by ShoLodge.

1995 - March: Prime purchases ShoLodge's 50 % interest in the AmeriSuites brand. Prime assumes ownership and operation of 13 AmeriSuites hotels on April 1 and reveals an aggressive growth plan for the chain, with 100 hotels opened by the year 2000.

1995 - June: Prime unveils a new logo and identity package for AmeriSuites.

1995 - December: Four Bradbury Suites hotels, acquired in August, are converted to AmeriSuites. At the end of 1995, there are 19 AmeriSuites operating in 13 states

1996 - Ends with 33 AmeriSuites operating in 16 states.

1997 - July: Prime achieves a 400% growth level of the AmeriSuites chain since acquiring it in 1995. A total of 30 hotels were opened in 1997, growing the chain to 63 properties.

1998 - June: Prime announces it will begin franchising the AmeriSuites brand. Plans are to have 200 hotels open or in development by 2000.

1998 - September: The chain launches its web site

1998 - December: The first three AmeriSuites franchise agreements are signed: Elmhurst, IL; Ontario Mills, CA and Burr Ridge, IL.

1998 - An additional 21 hotels are opened during the year, bringing the chain total to 84 properties.

1999 - A total of 13 hotels are added to the chain in 1999, bringing the number systemwide to 97.

2000 - January: The Grapevine, TX AmeriSuites opens, representing the first franchisee-developed hotel in the chain.

2000 - November, 2000: AmeriSuites completes acquisition of the leaseholds of the 27-unit Sumner Suites chain. All hotels are converted to AmeriSuites, thereby instantly expanding the chain 30 percent.

2001 - May: AmeriSuites celebrates the opening of its largest and most unique hotel, a 245-unit hotel at Chicago/O'Hare. In addition to an indoor pool and fitness center and 6,500 square feet of meeting space, it offers a Marilyn Miglin Spa and full-service restaurant. It also features a VIP floor, providing guests with bathrobes, in-room fax machines, cordless phones and upscale oak furnishings. AmeriSuites also launches its first national television advertising campaign. The 30 second commercial, featuring the "Don't Downsize. AmeriSize." theme, is run on national cable stations.

AmeriSuites' Directory
AmeriSuites Birmingham Inverness
AmeriSuites Birmingham Riverchase

AmeriSuites Flagstaff / Interstate Crossroads
AmeriSuites Phoenix Metrocenter
AmeriSuites Scottsdale / Old Town
AmeriSuites Tempe / Arizona Mills
AmeriSuites Tempe / Phoenix Airport
AmeriSuites Tucson Airport

AmeriSuites Little Rock Financial Center
Amerisuites Rogers/Bentonville

AmeriSuites Los Angeles / Ontario Mills
AmeriSuites Sacramento / Rancho Cordova
AmeriSuites San Francisco / Dublin
AmeriSuites Silicon Valley/Fremont

AmeriSuites Co Springs Garden of the Gods
AmeriSuites Denver / Park Meadows
AmeriSuites Denver / Tech Center
AmeriSuites Denver Airport

AmeriSuites Mystic - I-95 & Seaport
AmeriSuites Shelton / Corporate Tower

AmeriSuites Fort Lauderdale 17th St.
AmeriSuites Ft Lauderdale / Plantation
AmeriSuites Ft.Lauderdale / Weston
AmeriSuites Jacksonville / Baymeadows
AmeriSuites Lakeland Center
AmeriSuites Miami Airport / West
AmeriSuites Miami/Blue Lagoon
AmeriSuites Miami/Kendall
AmeriSuites Orlando / Convention Center
AmeriSuites Orlando / Lake Buena Vista South
AmeriSuites Orlando / Universal
AmeriSuites Orlando Airport / Northeast
AmeriSuites Orlando Airport / Northwest
AmeriSuites Tampa / Sabal Park
AmeriSuites Tampa Airport / Westshore
AmeriSuites Tampa near Busch Gardens

AmeriSuites Atlanta / Galleria
AmeriSuites Atlanta / Gwinnett Mall
AmeriSuites Atlanta / Peachtree Corner
AmeriSuites Atlanta / Perimeter Center
AmeriSuites Atlanta Airport
Amerisuites Atlanta Airport North
AmeriSuites Atlanta Alpharetta / Winward Parkway
AmeriSuites Atlanta Buckhead
AmeriSuites Atlanta-Downtown
AmeriSuites Atlanta/Duluth, Johns Creek
AmeriSuites Augusta / Riverwatch Pkwy
AmeriSuites Lithonia / Stonecrest Mall
AmeriSuites Northpoint Mall / Atlanta

AmeriSuites Boise / Town Square Mall

AmeriSuites Chicago / Hoffman Estates
AmeriSuites Chicago / Itasca
AmeriSuites Chicago / Lombard
AmeriSuites Chicago/Arlington Heights
AmeriSuites Chicago/Schaumburg
AmeriSuites Chicago/Vernon Hills

AmeriSuites Fort Wayne
AmeriSuites Indianapolis - Airport Speedway
AmeriSuites Indianapolis Keystone

AmeriSuites Overland Park / Metcalf
AmeriSuites Overland Park/Convention Center
AmeriSuites Topeka / Northwest

AmeriSuites Cincinnati Airport
AmeriSuites Louisville/East

AmeriSuites Baton Rouge / East

AmeriSuites Baltimore BWI Airport
AmeriSuites Baltimore/Owings Mills

AmeriSuites Boston / Medford

AmeriSuites Detriot / Utica
AmeriSuites Detroit / Livonia
AmeriSuites Detroit/Auburn Hills
AmeriSuites Grand Rapids

AmeriSuites Minneapolis / Eden Prairie
AmeriSuites Minneapolis / Mall of America

AmeriSuites Kansas City Airport

AmeriSuites Las Vegas/ Paradise Road

AmeriSuites Mount Laurel / Philadelphia
AmeriSuites Paramus / Fair Lawn
AmeriSuites Princeton Carnegie Center West
AmeriSuites Secaucus / Meadowlands

New Mexico
AmeriSuites Albuquerque / Airport
AmeriSuites Albuquerque / Midtown
AmeriSuites Albuquerque / Uptown

North Carolina
AmeriSuites Atlantic Beach
AmeriSuites Charlotte / Arrowood
AmeriSuites Charlotte Airport
AmeriSuites Charlotte/Coliseum
AmeriSuites Greensboro
AmeriSuites Raleigh / Wake Forest Rd
AmeriSuites Raleigh RDU Airport/RTP

AmeriSuites Cincinnati Deerfield
AmeriSuites Cincinnati North
AmeriSuites Cincinnati/Blue Ash
AmeriSuites Cleveland So./Independence
AmeriSuites Columbus / Dublin
AmeriSuites Columbus / Worthington

AmeriSuites Midwest City/Tinker Air Force Base
AmeriSuites Oklahoma City / Airport
AmeriSuites Oklahoma City / Northwest Expressway
AmeriSuites Oklahoma City / Quail Springs
AmeriSuites Tulsa / Hyde Park

AmeriSuites Pittsburgh / Airport
AmeriSuites Pittsburgh/Cranberry

South Carolina
AmeriSuites Columbia / Northeast
AmeriSuites Columbia I 26
AmeriSuites Greenville/Haywood

AmeriSuites Memphis / Cordova
AmeriSuites Memphis/Primacy Parkway
AmeriSuites Nashville / Airport
AmeriSuites Nashville / Brentwood
AmeriSuites Nashville / Northeast
AmeriSuites Nashville / Opryland
AmeriSuites Nashville/Cool Springs

AmeriSuites Austin / Airport
AmeriSuites Austin Arboretum
AmeriSuites Austin North Central
AmeriSuites Dallas / Arlington
AmeriSuites Dallas / DFW Airport North
AmeriSuites Dallas / DFW Airport South
AmeriSuites Dallas / Near the Galleria
AmeriSuites Dallas / Park Central
AmeriSuites Dallas / Plano North
AmeriSuites Dallas / West End
AmeriSuites Dallas/Grand Prairie
AmeriSuites Dallas/Las Colinas / Walnut Hill
AmeriSuites Dallas/Las Colinas/Hidden Ridge
AmeriSuites El Paso
AmeriSuites Fort Worth / Cityview
AmeriSuites Ft Worth / Hurst
AmeriSuites Houston Intercontinental Airport / Greenspoint
AmeriSuites San Antonio / Airport
AmeriSuites San Antonio / Northwest I10
AmeriSuites San Antonio / Riverwalk

AmeriSuites Blacksburg University
AmeriSuites Chester / River's Bend
AmeriSuites Dulles Airport North/ Sterling
AmeriSuites Dulles Airport South / Chantilly
AmeriSuites Richmond / Arboretum
AmeriSuites Richmond / Innsbrook
AmeriSuites Roanoke/Valley View Mall

AmeriSuites Pasco/TRAC

AmeriSuites Milwaukee / Airport
AmeriSuites Milwaukee / West

Hyatt Hotels & Resorts
Also See: Former Hilton Executive Jim Abrahamson Named President and COO of Baymont Inns Suites / May 2000
Pritzker Family To Acquire U.S. Franchise Systems for $5.00 Per Share; Mike Leven and Steve Romaniello to Remain / Sept 2000
Doug Geoga to Direct Hyatt's New Initiative to Restructure Domestic and International Business / March 2003

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