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June 5, 2018

Supplier News: Big Updates From Sheraton, Mövenpick

From Marriott's big plans for a Sheraton re-do to Mövenpick's latest hotel, here's the biggest supplier news this week in the meetings and events industry. 

Marriott to Revamp Sheraton Brand

New amenities are in store for business travelers and event attendees staying at Sheraton-branded hotels in the next couple of years. At this year’s NYU International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference in New York, Marriott International announced big plans for its transformation of the Sheraton Hotels and Resorts brand, which is the third-largest brand in the company’s portfolio. The move follows the introduction of a new Sheraton guestroom last year.

In a written statement Marriott President and CEO Arne Sorenson said that the revitalization of Sheraton has been a top priority at the company since it merged with Starwood in late 2016.

The new Sheraton design aims to enable socialization, productivity and personalization, in what Marriott describes as a return to its roots as a gathering place for locals and guests. The strategy will center on collaborative venues, technology enabled designs and a host.

In 2013, the company kicked off a repositioning of its Marriott Hotels brand that included a redesign of the guest room and MClub Lounge. According to Marriott, the renovated hotels have seen average market share gains of nine percent and “intent to recommend” scores an average of eight points higher than non-renovated hotels.

Since joining Marriott International as part of the acquisition of Starwood Hotels and Resorts in September 2016, Sheraton has exited 6,000 rooms with another 2,000 expected to depart by the end of the year, Marriott said. During the same period, 5,000 rooms have been signed to the portfolio. Intent to recommend for the brand has already increased 2 points year-over-year and market share has grown for the first time in years. The Sheraton brand consists of nearly 450 open hotels, with an additional 80 projects in the pipeline in 72 countries and territories, generating $9.2 billion in property revenue worldwide. By 2020, the brand’s footprint is expected to expand to 90 countries.

Mövenpick to Open Hotel Near Sfax, Tunisia, Convention Center

Mövenpick Hotels & Resorts is set to open a new hotel near the Sfax convention center in Tunisia, its fourth property in the country. 

The Swiss hospitality firm has signed an agreement with Société Touristique du Sud to manage the Plaza Sfax & Spa Hotel, an upscale property in the city center on Rue Khalid Ibn Walid, close to the historic Medina, a short walk from the convention center, Sfax International Fair, and approximately six miles from Sfax-Thyna Airport.

When the hotel launches as Mövenpick Hotel Sfax later this year, it will mark the Swiss hospitality firm’s fourth property in Tunisia.

The 89-key hotel, which spans nine floors, has contemporary architecture and a modern interior design concept inspired by nature, with open spaces and neutral colors creating.

Facility highlights will include a spa, swimming pool and gym, as well as a ballroom and six meeting rooms, while three upmarket dining options will include an all-day dining venue, a specialty rooftop restaurant with panoramic city and coastal views and a lobby lounge.

Mövenpick also operates the Mövenpick Hotel du Lac Tunis, which opened earlier this year, as well as Mövenpick Resort & Marine Spa Sousse and Mövenpick Hotel Gammarth Tunis.

etc venues

Benchmark Invests in Day Event Venue Company

Hospitality company Benchmark and its capital partner, Gencom, have made an investment in the UK-based etc.venues, a non-residential day meetings company with 15 properties in London, Birmingham and Manchester

Benchmark said that the move significantly increases the company’s global footprint, allowing it to operate across three continents, with a total of 80 properties in North America, the Caribbean, Japan and the United Kingdom. Benchmark said that etc.venues will also complement its four hospitality services brands: Benchmark Resorts & Hotels, Gemstone Collection, Benchmark Conference Centers and the Benchmark Owner Advisory Group.  

Etc.venues’ facilities are located in key business districts around London and in the commercial centers of Birmingham and Manchester. 

The new collaboration will spur the global expansion of Benchmark and etc.venues in urban and destination sites within Europe and the United States, said Alastair Stewart, managing director of etc.venues, in a written statement.

“US expansion of etc.venues is a key part of the strategy,” said Mr. Cabañas. ”Benchmark is evaluating gateway cities such as New York, Chicago, Los Angeles and others. We will look to further growth opportunities in Europe for our management, operational and asset management services.”

Benchmark said that a number of trends in both travel and real estate were also important to the new partnership. Consumer preferences are trending towards experiential travel, on demand services/amenities, and shared/collaborative spaces. As office buildings and commercial real estate evolve with “guest-centric, hotel-like” services, this mixed-use platform aims to attract real estate owners and managers looking for a diverse-portfolio, one-stop-shop operator, the company said. Conference planners and potential hotel owners will also find many new options and advantages.

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