Development

Hotel Indigo Unveils Novel Design Concept

Retail-Inspired Brand Redefines Hotel Experience

InterContinental InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG), the world's largest and most global hotel company, today unveiled its new retail-inspired design and service concept for Hotel Indigo™, a new lodging alternative for the traveler seeking a refreshing hotel experience.

"For the first time in the hotel industry, we're defining customers by a mindset rather than a price point," said Steve Porter, president for the Americas, InterContinental Hotels Group. "By approaching the hotel design and services from a retailer's perspective, we are able to cater to middle market consumers who are 'trading up' to higher levels of quality and taste, but still seeking value. This is the first evolution of a hotel that creates a refreshing, changing environment designed to rejuvenate travelers, not impress others."

Based on marketplace trends, IHG used Cohort Research in combination with Simmons data to define and identify this "trading up" segment for the lodging industry and determined that more than 20 million U.S. households fit this profile. The design and service model of Hotel Indigo was created specifically to address critical attitudes of this segment that identifies itself as value shoppers, non-conformists and décor enthusiasts.

A key component of Hotel Indigo's retail service model, developed with the assistance of Back Lot Productions, focuses on design elements that can be changed out to create a renewed environment. In guestrooms, signature murals, area rugs and slip covers will change, while public spaces will be transformed through changing artwork, directional signage and paint schemes. Using the timeless, universal design constant known as the Golden Mean, the décor incorporates imagery that conveys a warm, welcoming environment. In conjunction with the classically recognized calming attributes of the color blue, guest rooms encourage relaxation by providing a work-and-play-friendly environment, not just an "office with a bed."

Forging a partnership with another brand based on renewal, the first Hotel Indigo will feature a preview of This Old House paint from ICI Paints. Well known and respected for its renovation skills and design savvy, This Old House also is developing an Hotel Indigo color scheme for a new This Old House paint line which will be available to consumers in the near future.

Extending the retail model from design through service, Hotel Indigo guests will be welcomed into an accommodating environment that helps them create an experience suited to their own lifestyle. A non-traditional front desk structure allows staff the flexibility to move throughout the property greeting arriving guests, as well as providing customers with the option of checking themselves in. The bistro's seasonal, health-conscious fare can be prepared ahead for the time-conscious traveler who wishes to eat in his room or for those who wish to relax in one of the hotel's signature oversized lobby chairs. Designed with the single traveler in mind, the chair creates a personal work or dining space within the public areas of Hotel Indigo.

"As a lifestyle brand, Hotel Indigo caters to travelers seeking unique experiences…not static environments," said Jim Anhut, senior vice president, brand development for the Americas, InterContinental Hotels Group. "Everything from the changing murals to the seasonal menu allows travelers to experience Hotel Indigo in a new way time and time again."

A brand developed primarily for conversions, Hotel Indigo is designed to fit a variety of markets in locations where a hotel might not be reaching its full potential. The first Hotel Indigo is scheduled to open in Atlanta, Ga. by the end of 2004 and will have approximately 140 rooms. The brand has a growth potential in high profile urban and close-in suburban markets like Chicago, Miami, Boston and Los Angeles.

For more information on Hotel Indigo, please visit www.hotelindigo.com.



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