IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group) and international investment company Pro-invest Group today announced an exclusive agreement to develop a portfolio of EVEN® Hotels across key Australian and New Zealand capital cities and economic hubs. This is the first portfolio from the brand to be developed outside the United States and is an industry first; no other hotel brand provides a holistic wellness experience under one roof. IHG has recognised that health and wellness is one of the fastest growing industries in Australia, making it the perfect place to grow the brand.
This agreement, signed at the HICAP conference in Hong Kong this week, is an important milestone for IHG, Pro-invest Group and the Australian travel and tourism industry. Following the success of IHG’s partnership with Pro-invest for the Holiday Inn Express brand in Australia, both parties have been exploring the launch of further IHG brands in the market.
Jan Smits, Chief Executive Officer Asia Middle East & Africa, IHG commented: “The launch of the EVEN Hotels brand in Australia and New Zealand comes at a great time for IHG and is a strong fit to local consumer tastes and trends. We are continuing our expansion in bringing new brands to this market. We have established a strong hotel franchising model to provide owners and investors in Australia, such as Pro-invest, with a reliable and profitable alternative to our equally-successful management model. This is an exciting example of the growth and development of IHG, and a strong signal of our ambition.”
Ronald Barrott, Chief Executive Officer of Pro-invest Group commented: “We are seeing great growth in lifestyle services in Australia, both in health and wellness and exercise. This growth reflects the importance Australians, as well as those travelling to Australia, place on personal health and well-being, making it the perfect market and time to launch EVEN Hotels. We believe Australians will be excited to learn and experience the truly unique wellness offering of EVEN Hotels and support in growing this inspiring brand in the market.”
Ronald Barrott is one of IHG’s long-term partners and developed a portfolio of Holiday Inn Express properties in Europe in the 1990s and early 2000s with Stannifer Hotels. As Founder, CEO and Chairman of the company, Barrott led Stannifer to become one of the UK’s largest and most successful select service hotel groups. More recently, with Pro-invest Group he has started the roll-out of Holiday Inn Express in Australia.
EVEN Hotels is IHG’s newest lifestyle hotel brand, and was created with wellness at its core. The brand is designed to help travellers Eat Well, Rest Easy, Keep Active and Accomplish More, making it ideal to better serve wellness-minded travellers. Wellness means different things to different people and ranges across a wide spectrum from performance and self-improvement to healthy fun and restoration. The EVEN Hotels brand falls in the middle of that spectrum, balance, which enables guests to make lifestyle choices they can feel good about when travelling.
Launched in 2012, EVEN Hotels is expanding rapidly with five hotels now open in New York City, Omaha, Nebraska, Rockville, Maryland and Norwalk, Connecticut. Our current pipeline includes –Manhattan, N.Y. (second location); Seattle, Washington; Miami, Florida; Eugene, Oregon; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; and Shenandoah, Texas.