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Two Brands Better then One; Six ANA Hotels in Japan
to be Co-branded ANA Crowne Plaza Hotels


• Six co-branded hotels to open in six cities during six consecutive weeks
• Ensures unrivaled international brand presence all across Japan
• New products and services to be based on in-depth customer research

Singapore, 13 November 2007 – IHG ANA Hotels Group Japan today announced the re-branding of six ANA hotels to ANA Crowne Plaza hotels in a move that will combine the best of Japanese hospitality with global experience, products and services in a new and innovative manner. Domestic and international guests will be able to enjoy this new hotel experience all across Japan – from Hokkaido in the north to Okinawa in the South.

ANA hotels in the key Japanese cities of Chitose, Toyama, Kanazawa, Hiroshima, Naha and Narita will be re-branded to ANA Crowne Plaza hotels. In addition to a name change, the re-branding will incorporate the progressive introduction of products and services uniquely tailored to the needs of the Japanese market. The re-branding of the six ANA Crowne Plaza hotels will be completed by 17 December 2007. A further two ANA hotels will be co-branded and join the ANA Crowne Plaza network next year.

Said Mr. Chris Moloney, CEO, IHG ANA Hotels Group Japan, “The new ANA Crowne Plaza hotels will blend ANA’s brand strength and market expertise in Japan with the global strength of Crowne Plaza to offer a dynamic brand offering that is unmatched within in the hotel industry in Japan. Our co-branded hotels will gain an international flavour while maintaining their emphasis on offering authentic Japanese hospitality.” 

“We believe that the local cities we operate in have great potential for tourism growth.  Through our global guest loyalty programme, Priority Club Rewards as well as extensive distribution channels, we are confident we will attract many more guests to our ANA Crowne Plaza hotels. In turn, we hope this will contribute to the economic development of each of these cities. We also continue to enhance our online booking system in order to cater to the increasing trend towards internet bookings among Japanese business travelers,” said Mr. Kevin Kowalski, Senior Vice President, IHG, Worldwide Brand Management, Crowne Plaza. He added that guests will be able to experience enhanced levels of product offerings and service standards that reflect the real needs of customers. 

In preparation for the re-branding of ANA Crowne Plaza, nearly 2,000 Japanese consumers were interviewed to better understand their business and leisure travel needs. IHG ANA Hotels Group incorporated insights into the co-branding efforts in order to ensure that all products and services are uniquely tailored to the needs of Japanese guests. These learnings apply to all areas of the hotel experience, including the meetings, incentives conferences and event (MICE) offerings, a growing segment in Japan. ANA Crowne Plaza will offer extensive expertise in organising important social events such as weddings and receptions. 

“The introduction of products and services personalised to the needs of Japanese guests will help differentiate the ANA Crowne Plaza brand within the Japanese hospitality industry.” said Mr. Kowalski.
 
The re-branding of ANA hotels to ANA Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts is undertaken by IHG ANA Hotels Group Japan, the hotel operating joint venture between IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group) and ANA (All Nippon Airways), which is now the leading international hotel operating company in Japan, the world’s second largest hotel market. The company previously announced that 13 ANA hotels would be re-branded over time to one of the three co-brands created for Japan – ANA InterContinental, ANA Crowne Plaza and ANA Holiday Inn. 

Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts is the upscale hotel brand of UK-based IHG, one of the world’s largest hotel groups by number of rooms. Crowne Plaza operates 293 hotels globally, 51 of which are located in Asia Pacific, where the Crowne Plaza brand is growing rapidly. With the launch of the six ANA Crowne Plaza hotels, nearly 2,000 new guest rooms will become part of the global Crowne Plaza network.

New Services to be introduced at ANA Crowne Plaza hotels

The following products and services will be immediately available as each hotel completes its re-branding. Additional product and service innovations will be introduced progressively during the coming months. 

• Strengthened event-specialised services 
ANA Crowne Plaza Hotels will introduce products and services to meet the demand for banquets, weddings and conferences. All ANA Crowne Plaza hotels will have a dedicated and highly trained Crowne Events Director, who is responsible for the management of events and acts as the single point of contact between guests and the hotel to ensure that guests’ needs are met and their experience is pleasant and stress-free. 

• Enhance current products and services by bringing in global standards 
ANA Crowne Plaza Hotels will improve breakfast menus, increase the variety of room service and extend its availability to 24 hours, and enhance services for both domestic and international business travellers and leisure guests.

• Upgraded room amenities
ANA Crowne Plaza Hotels will upgrade linens and amenities with high-quality products based on the Crowne Plaza global standard. 

InterContinental Hotels Group PLC (IHG) of the United Kingdom [LON:IHG, NYSE:IHG (ADRs)] is one of the world's largest hotel groups by number of rooms.  IHG owns, manages, leases or franchises, through various subsidiaries, over 3,800 hotels and more than 571,000 guest rooms in nearly 100 countries and territories around the world. IHG owns a portfolio of well recognised and respected hotel brands including InterContinental® Hotels & Resorts, Crowne Plaza® Hotels & Resorts, Holiday Inn® Hotels and Resorts, Holiday Inn Express®, Staybridge Suites®, Candlewood Suites® and Hotel Indigo®, and also manages the world's largest hotel loyalty programme, Priority Club® Rewards with over 37 million members worldwide.

The company pioneered the travel industry’s first collaborative response to environmental issues as founder of the International Hotels and Environment Initiative (IHEI). The IHEI formed the foundations of the Tourism Partnership launched by the International Business Leaders Forum in 2004, of which IHG is still a member today. The environment and local communities remain at the heart of IHG’s global corporate responsibility focus.

IHG offers information and online reservations for all its hotel brands at www.ihg.com and information for the Priority Club Rewards programme at www.priorityclub.com. For the latest news from IHG, visit our online Press Office at www.ihg.com/media
 

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Contact:

IHG
Birte Sebastian
  +65 9638 5788
  birte.sebastian@ihg.com
www.ihg.com

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Also See: ANA to Sell 13 Hotels to Morgan Stanley for $2.37 billion; Hotel Names Will Not Change, IHG ANA Hotels Continue as Operator / April 2007
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