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Complete Rankings for Customer Satisfaction Across Six Hotel Segments

Despite Industry Downturn, Satisfaction With Hotels Increases
According to J.D. Power and Associates
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WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif., July 28, 2009 - Even though reduced demand has caused hotel properties to slash operating costs and reduce staff, hotel guest satisfaction has improved in 2009, according to the J.D. Power and Associates 2009 North America Hotel Guest Satisfaction Index Study(SM) released today.

Now in its 13th year, the study measures overall hotel guest satisfaction across six hotel segments: luxury,upscale, mid-scale full service, mid-scale limited service, economy/budget and extended stay. Seven key measures are examined within each segment to determine overall satisfaction: reservations; check-in/check-out; guest room; food and beverage; hotel services; hotel facilities; and costs and fees.

Four of the six segments--upscale; mid-scale full service; mid-scale limited service; and economy/budget--have improved in satisfaction in 2009, compared with 2008. Guest satisfaction with luxury hotels has remained stable from 2008, while satisfaction with extended stay properties has deceased slightly. Across all segments, satisfaction with the reservations and check in/check out measures has improved, while satisfaction with guest rooms has declined.

"Many hotel brands have successfully focused on guest satisfaction, despite steep rate discounts, staff declines, reductions in in-room amenities and a halt on renovations," said Michael Drago, director of the global hospitality and travel practice at J.D. Power and Associates. "These hoteliers know that providing extraordinary guest service in a consistent manner, in both good times and bad, is a recipe for continued success."

Hotel guests in 2009 express increased desire for comfort and value-related amenities. For the first time since the inception of the study in 1997, bedding and pillow choices and free parking are among the top five "must-have" amenities for hotel guests. Other most-desired amenities include complimentary breakfast, wireless Internet access and pillow-top mattresses. Within the luxury segment, a high percentage of guests express the desire for in-room high-definition flat-panel TVs.

"Hotel guests want the comforts of home at a competitive rate," said Drago. "They don't want to incur fees for 'extras' such as parking or Internet access. Guests are much more satisfied when their total charge at check-out is in line with what they anticipated when they made their room reservation."

The following hotel brands rank highest in guest satisfaction within their respective segments:

  • Luxury: Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts
  • Upscale: Embassy Suites Hotels (for a third consecutive year)
  • Mid-Scale Full Service: Hilton Garden Inn
  • Mid-Scale Limited Service: Drury Inn & Suites (for a fourth consecutive year)
  • Economy/Budget: Microtel Inns & Suites (for an eighth consecutive year)
  • Extended Stay: Staybridge Suites
"Microtel Inns & Suites, which ranks highest for an unprecedented eighth consecutive year, is owned by Wyndham Worldwide--a hotel group that has improved substantially from 2008," said Drago. "InterContinental Hotels Group, which owns Staybridge Suites--the highest-ranked property in the extended stay segment--also improves considerably in 2009 from 2008. Each of these hotel groups owns a wide array of hotel brands in various segments, so their improvement is particularly impressive."

The study finds that hotel companies that maintain brand standards consistently across their portfolio of properties have the ability to substantially increase their satisfaction and loyalty levels.

"The highest-performing hotel brands differentiate themselves by meeting customer expectations consistently, whether it's a guest's first stay with the brand or their fiftieth," said Drago. "By setting and maintaining high brand standards, hotels build a reputation for reliability, which breeds customer loyalty."

The study also includes the following key findings:

  • Guest awareness of property-initiated "green" programs has increased significantly in 2009, with 66 percent of guests stating that they were aware of their hotel's conservation efforts, compared with 57 percent in 2008. Among these guests, 72 percent say they participated in their hotel's conservation programs.
  • Awareness of "green" programs has a strong impact on overall hotel guest satisfaction. On average, satisfaction is more than 160 points higher among guests who report being aware of their hotel's green programs, compared with guests who are unaware of them.
  • The proportion of hotel guests making reservations online has decreased slightly in 2009, to 54 percent from 57 percent in 2008.
  • The 2009 North America Hotel Guest Satisfaction Index Study is based on responses gathered between June 2008 and June 2009 from more than 66,000 guests who stayed in a hotel between May 2008 and June 2009.
Power Circle Ratings Legend:
    5 - Among the best
    4 - Better than most
    3 - About average
    2 - The rest
Luxury Segment
Overall Satisfaction Index
(Based on a 1,000-point scale) . J.D. Power Circle Ratings
Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts  863 5
The Ritz-Carlton 853 5
Fairmont Hotels & Resorts 826 3
JW Marriott  814 3
Luxury Segment Average 814 3
Loews Hotels 811 3
InterContinental Hotels & Resorts  795 3
W Hotels 793 3
Millennium Hotels and Resorts 701 2
Included in the study but not ranked due to small sample size are: Le Meridien Hotels
and Resorts, Park Hyatt Hotels, St. Regis Hotels & Resorts, and Sofitel.

Upscale Segment
Overall Satisfaction Index

(Based on a 1,000-point scale) . J.D. Power Circle Ratings
Embassy Suites Hotels  809 5
Wyndham Hotels & Resorts 796 4
Omni Hotels  795 4
Marriott Hotels & Resorts  792 4
Renaissance Hotels & Resorts 792 4
Westin Hotels & Resorts 786 3
Upscale Segment Average  783 3
Hilton Hotels 781 3
Hyatt Hotels & Resorts  776 3
Doubletree 771 2
Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts 763 2
Sheraton Hotels & Resorts 763 2
Radisson Hotels & Resorts 757 2
Delta Hotels  749 2
Included in the study but not ranked due to small sample
size are: Aloft and Hotel Indigo.

Mid-Scale Full Service Segment
Overall Satisfaction Index

(Based on a 1,000-point scale) . J.D. Power Circle Ratings
Hilton Garden Inn 801 5
Hyatt Place 790 5
Courtyard 787 4
Four Points by Sheraton 744 3
Mid-Scale Full Service Segment Average  744 3
Wyndham Garden Hotels 743 3
Holiday Inn 739 3
Best Western 732 3
Clarion 711 2
Ramada Inn/Plaza 709 2
Quality 699 2
Howard Johnson Hotels/Plaza 681 2
Included in the study but not ranked due to small sample size is Novotel.

Mid-Scale Limited Service Segment
Overall Satisfaction Index

(Based on a 1,000-point scale) . J.D. Power Circle Ratings
Drury Inn & Suites 828 5
SpringHill Suites 806 4
Hampton Inn/Suites 804 4
Wingate by Wyndham 799 4
Fairfield Inn  779 3
Country Inns & Suites 770 3
Holiday Inn Express 770 3
Mid-Scale Limited Service Segment Average  767 3
Comfort Suites 759 3
AmericInn 751 3
Sleep Inn 746 3
La Quinta 741 3
Comfort Inn 723 2
Baymont Inn & Suites 711 2
Ramada Limited 689 2
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Economy/Budget Segment
Overall Satisfaction Index

(Based on a 1,000-point scale) . J.D. Power Circle Ratings
Microtel Inns & Suites 719 5
Red Roof Inn 679 4
Days Inn 675 4
Super 8 Motel 673 3
Howard Johnson Express/Inns 661 3
Economy/Budget Segment Average  661 3
Travelodge 656 3
Motel 6 642 3
Econo Lodge 630 2
Americas Best Value Inn 625 2
Rodeway Inn 621 2
Knights Inn 591 2
Included in the study but not ranked due to small sample size are: 
America's Best Inns & Suites, Budget Host Inn and Country Hearth Inn.

Extended Stay Segment
Overall Satisfaction Index

(Based on a 1,000-point scale) . J.D. Power Circle Ratings
Staybridge Suites 817 5
Homewood Suites 815 5
Residence Inn  812 5
Candlewood Suites 790 3
Extended Stay Segment Average  779 3
TownePlace Suites 775 3
Hawthorn Suites 752 3
Homestead Studio Suites Hotels  679 2
Extended StayAmerica 675 2
Included in the study but not ranked due to small sample size are: 
Hyatt Summerfield Suites, MainStay Suites and Studio 6.



About J.D. Power and Associates
Headquartered in Westlake Village, Calif., J.D. Power and Associates is a global marketing information services company operating in key business sectors including market research, forecasting, performance improvement, training, Web intelligence and customer satisfaction. The company's quality and satisfaction measurements are based on responses from millions of consumers annually. For more information on car reviews and ratings, car insurance, health insurance, cell phone ratings, and more, please visit JDPower.com. J.D. Power and Associates is a business unit of The McGraw-Hill Companies.

About The McGraw-Hill Companies
Founded in 1888, The McGraw-Hill Companies (NYSE: MHP) is a leading global information services provider meeting worldwide needs in the financial services, education and business information markets through leading brands such as Standard & Poor's, McGraw-Hill Education, BusinessWeek and J.D. Power and Associates. The Corporation has more than 280 offices in 40 countries. Sales in 2008 were $6.4 billion. Additional information is available at http://www.mcgraw-hill.com.

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Contact:

John Tews
J.D. Power and Associates
Troy, Mich
(312) 248-4119
media.relations@jdpa.com
JDPower.com

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Also See: Top Customer Satisfaction Rankings Reported by J.D. Power - The Ritz-Carlton, Embassy Suites Hotels, Hyatt Place, Drury Inn & Suites, Microtel Inns & Suites and Homewood Suites; Hotel Guests Are Considerably Less Satisfied in 2008 / July 2008
Drury Inn, Embassy Suites, Hilton Garden Inn, Homewood Suites, Microtel Inns and The Ritz-Carlton Top J.D. Power and Associates 2007 North America Hotel Guest Satisfaction Study / July 2007
Drury Inn & Suites, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts, Hilton Garden Inn, Microtel Inns & Suites, Omni Hotels and Residence Inn Top Customer Satisfaction Rankings; The J.D. Power and Associates 2006 North America Hotel Guest Satisfaction Index Study / July 2006
J.D. Power and Associates Reports: Hotel Guest Satisfaction is Up, Despite Rising Room Rates and Increased Occupancies; Hilton Brands Receive Top Rankings in Three Out of Six Segments / July 2005
The 2004 North America Guest Satisfaction Index Study; Enhanced Beds Make Strong Impact on Satisfaction / J.D. Power and Associates / July 2004
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