InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) [LON: IHG; NYSE: IHG] today announced that it has acquired a new asset in Brooklyn, N.Y., that the Company will develop as a new hotel under its EVEN™ Hotels brand, expanding the wellness hotel brand's portfolio in the Greater New York City area and accelerating its growth in strong urban markets. This new property will be the fifth hotel added to the EVEN Hotels brand's development pipeline, and the announcement comes as EVEN Hotels prepares to open its first two properties in spring 2014.
"As the third largest central business district in New York City and a strong commercial and residential development market that continues to gain momentum, Brooklyn was a natural and very purposeful location for EVEN Hotels," said Kirk Kinsell, president, the Americas, IHG. "Since introducing the EVEN Hotels brand, we have been committed to actively growing our portfolio in key urban and suburban markets that have a large base of wellness-minded individuals and travelers. We have been inspired by the wellness revolution taking place in Brooklyn and are looking forward to having a strong presence in the community."
The downtown Brooklyn EVEN Hotels property will be located at the intersection of Nevins and Schermerhorn Streets, only four blocks from the Barclays Center and in the heart of the booming Boerum Hill neighborhood. At launch, the brand named the New York metropolitan area as a key development market for EVEN Hotels, and has since announced two midtown Manhattan EVEN Hotels, which will be located on West 35th Street and East 44th Street. The Manhattan properties will open in mid-2015, while a location in Norwalk, Conn., is set to debut in spring 2014, and will be one of the first two EVEN Hotels properties to open. The other premiere property, situated outside of Washington, D.C., is located in Rockville, Md. The Brooklyn EVEN Hotels property announcement continues IHG's development momentum in the thriving Brooklyn market, following the grand opening of the Hotel Indigo Brooklyn in September and the October announcement of the Holiday Inn Brooklyn Nevins Station, which will open in early 2015.
Since the rezoning of Downtown Brooklyn in 2004, the area has undergone transformations which have resulted in $9 billion of private investment and $300 million in public improvements currently underway.[i] These figures prove a strong commitment by both the public and private sectors to continued growth within the community, and validate the strength of the market for business and leisure tourism.
Construction has already begun at the site of the new Brooklyn EVEN hotel, which will feature all signature aspects of the brand specially designed to serve the wellness-minded traveler. Elements include adaptable public workspaces; an open-style Market and Bar; an EVEN Hotels Athletic Studio; flex space for small group fitness classes; guest rooms featuring the EVEN Hotels In-Room Training Zone; as well as design and technology elements to help guests maintain the balance they desire. The 83,000 square foot Brooklyn hotel will feature 204 guest rooms and 13 guestroom floors, and is expected to open mid-2015 in conjunction with the midtown Manhattan EVEN Hotels properties.
The EVEN Hotels brand concept was born from more than 24 months of consumer insights research and offers a holistic approach to enabling wellness in travel. The brand offers a fresh perspective on wellness travel and provides guests a variety of options to help them Eat Well, Rest Easy, Keep Active and Accomplish More, all supported by in-hotel and mobile technologies, and a unique team member education and certification program.
The research found that 17 million wellness-minded U.S. travelers "fall off the wagon" when they travel and that leading a healthy, balanced lifestyle is increasingly more important to Americans.[ii] This however, is a challenge, especially for those on the road with workers who spend more than 20 days on the road each month more than twice as likely to rate their health as "poor" or "fair."[iii]
With these findings and their implications about the direction of wellness travel in mind, the EVEN Hotels brand partnered with a number of health and wellness leaders, lifestyle experts and travelers, to launch wellwellwell.com, an online destination and resource for wellness-minded travelers, fueled by EVEN Hotels, which provides localized and insightful content designed to help travelers maintain their routine while away from home. The site hosts city-specific guides that feature articles, tips and localized information on the best places to eat, rest, exercise and explore while home and away in cities across the country.
"EVEN Hotels was created to inspire the wellness-minded traveler – estimated to be 40 percent of the mainstream traveling public – and to help them maintain their balance wherever they are, and the launch of wellwellwell.com, allows us to reach the broader public and provide them with insightful content and helpful resources on wellness and travel no matter where they live or travel," said Adam Glickman, head of EVEN Hotels. "The site is yet another part of the holistic approach to wellness EVEN Hotels provides. As we launch the brand and grow our footprint in the U.S.,wellwellwell.com gives us the opportunity to develop a relationship with the wider traveling public."
EVEN Hotels carefully selected partners including health and wellness leaders and lifestyle experts, food and beverage influencers and publishers of health and wellness content to curate the best tips and articles for traveling well. Content partners include leadership representatives from companies including Gaiam, Rodale publishing, EO Products, the Athletic Minded Traveler, as well as Dr. Drew Ramsey, author of 50 Shades of Kale, and Tammy Stokes, founder of West Coast Workout, among others. In addition to these content partners, wellwellwell.com will curate user-generated content and publish tips and city view recommendations from travel-minded, health-conscious and active site visitors.
The EVEN Hotels brand was created based on an understanding of the consumer shift toward wellness – especially as it relates to travel. Developed to meet the needs of the wellness-minded traveler at a mainstream price, EVEN Hotels offers wellness-savvy staff, a best-in-class fitness experience, healthier food choices and natural, relaxing spaces to help travelers maintain their balance.
[i] Downtown Brooklyn Partnership (DBP)
[ii] Natural Marketing Institutes (NMI) 2010 Health and Wellness Trends Database®
[iii] Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health; Business travel and self-rated health, obesity and cardiovascular disease risk factors; 2011
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