The 17 Trendiest New Hotel Brands
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When it comes to trends in the lodging industry, boutique is where it’s at. Since Starwood started the W Hotel chain in 1998, the market’s been on fire. From treadmills and organic foods for health aficionados, to neon lights and mobile apps for Millennials, these 17 chains are quickly becoming the hottest hotels everyone's talking about.
Parent Company: Founded by Starwood's Barry Sternlicht, the brand is another gem in Starwood's increasingly impressive crown.
The Unique Twist: According to Sternlicht himself, 1Hotel's magic comes from its ability to capture the simplicity and beauty of nature. Far from a log cabin in the woods, 1Hotels is striving to find the balance between luxury, sustainability and natural refreshment. Sternlicht says he hopes 1Hotel's unique philosophy will help spark a conversation that changes the hotel industry forever.
Unique Amenities: Sternlicht made sure that the open spaces are full of natural light, the food fresh and organic, and the furniture made from recycled wood and materials. Even the sinks and showers will have top-notch filters. But the hotel's not going completely wildlife. The brand is embracing a new app called "the Field Guide" that will eliminate the need for phones, TV remotes and wasteful paper.
Locations: 1Hotel currently has hotels in Central Park and in South Beach, FL, with a new hotel by the Brooklyn Bridge underway. Bisnow will be holding its Ascent conference at the 1Hotel Sotuh Beach; click here to learn more.
Free WiFi: Yes
2. Canopy by Hilton
Parent Company: Hotel giant Hilton extends its loyalty program, Hilton HHonors, to all Canopy locations.
The Unique Twist: The Canopy is focused on being "local," with each location featuring unique decor, food, beverage and information. The staff at the Canopy will be trained to point you in the direction of the nearest craft brewery, small restaurant or nightclub—giving you the best and most complete experience of whatever city you're in.
Unique Amenities: Canopy's complimentary services will include artisanal breakfasts and nightly tastings of local wines, beers and spirits.
Location: Although there are no current Canopy locations, Hilton has signed letters of intent for Portland, Nashville and upstate New York, and a Canopy will soon be opening in a mixed-use development called The Wharf in Washington, D.C., in the Fall of 2017.
Free WiFi: Yes
3. Hyatt Centric
Parent Company: Parent company Hyatt promises all Centric hotels will be backed by the company's reputation, marketing power, loyalty programs and global reservation systems.
The Unique Twist: The Centric brand does not have a consistent style. Instead, Hyatt tailors each hotel by location, giving travelers a distinct taste of the city's culture and cuisine. They also provide flexibility for both casual and business travelers, though an intimate and cosmopolitan atmosphere is felt regardless of the location or reason for travel.
Unique Amenities: Each hotel has decor and specific amenities—such as bathware, coffee brands and alcohol—uniquely tailored to each location, as well as libraries and communal tables. The spaces and furniture are flexible and open for communal interaction. So whether you want to work in isolation or sit casually in the lobby and chat with a stranger, the Centric has you covered.
Locations: Hyatt currently boasts Centric hotels in both Chicago and South Beach Miami. The Chicago branch is in a renovated 1920s art deco building, while the Miami branch sits in a modern glass tower. Future locations include Long Beach, San Francisco, Santa Barbara, Key West, Miami, Atlanta, Chicago, New York, Houston, Park City, Washington, DC, and Paris.
Free WiFi: Yes
Parent Company: Cordis is an attempt by Langham—originally known for its luxury properties—to build on the success of its Hotels and Resorts lines.
The Unique Twist: Cordis is bringing the hotel industry to its most basic and essential facets of service, connection, sophistication and community Through the adoption of new technologies, Langham believes Cordis will deliver a unique, holistic hotel experience without sacrificing the quality, luxury or personalized service expected from an upscale hotel.
Unique Amenities: With its focus on customer well-being, Cordis is looking into special offerings like spacious meeting settings, unique restaurants, programs for children and even neighborhood trips.
Locations: The first location is expected to open this year in Hong Kong, with future locations expected in China, Bali, Sri Lanka, London, New York, Orlando, San Francisco, Dubai, Singapore and Bangkok.
Free WiFi: Unknown
5. The Edition by Marriott
Parent Company: The Edition is the dream partnership of Marriott and hotel design legend Ian Schranger, who will be acting as a creative consultant. With Schranger's unique creative vision and Marriott's unlimited capabilities, the Edition calls itself "the first large scale, truly global branded portfolio of lifestyle hotels that will set the standard for decades to come."
The Unique Twist: The design and decor of each Edition is dependent on the location, but Schranger and Marriott are determined to deliver the ultimate form of luxury lifestyle hotels.
Unique Amenities: In addition to the top-of-the-line amenities you would find in a luxury hotel (spas, pools and world-class dining), the Edition caters heavily towards business travelers, providing everything from smart boards to iPads. But at several locations, the Edition goes above and beyond: the Miami branch features a bowling alley, nightclub, ice skating rink, personal cabanas, an outdoor movie theater and 70k SF of beachfront. The New York branch features junket floors for press junkets and movie filmings. Even the Istanbul branch features a three-floor spa.
Locations: The Edition has started strong in London, Miami (pictured), Istanbul and New York, but will soon be expanding to China, Bangkok, India, Abu Dhabi, West Hollywood and Indonesia.
Free WiFi: Yes
6. EVEN Hotels
Parent Company: Set up by the InterContinental Hotel Group in 2012, the EVEN brand just started gaining traction.
The Unique Twist: The brand is centered around holistic and health-focused travelers who want to keep up their diets and exercise regiments while away from home and without breaking the bank.
Unique Amenities: Almost every design decision throughout the EVEN is geared towards healthy, holistic living, including eucalyptus linens, in-room yoga mats, fresh-squeezed juice, made-to-order smoothies, and Grab-and-Go organic foods from Cork & Kale Market and Bar. The showers feature organic shampoos and body products and the lobby features board games and books for the rare moments you don't want to exercise.
Locations: There are currently EVENs in Norwalk, CT, and Rockville, MD, with future locations soon to be built in Manhattan, Brooklyn, Washington, DC, San Francisco, Chicago, Denver, Portland and Seattle.
Free WiFi: Yes
7. The Freehand Hotels
Parent Company: The Sydell Group has been developing lifestyle boutique hotels for years, including the NoMad in New York, The Saguaro in Scottsdale and Palm Springs, and the LINE in Los Angeles.
The Unique Twist: Sydell created the Freehand as a hub for the next generation of travelers, re-creating the culture of a hostel while at the same time providing the amenities and comforts of an upscale hotel. By staying at a Freehand, you can meet with other travelers while getting easy access to the cities' local cultures.
Unique Amenities: The Freehand has affordable private and shared accommodations (including rooms that house two, four and eight people), as well as award-winning food and drink.
Locations: There are Freehands in both Miami and Chicago; both are housed in refurbished 1930s Art Deco buildings and feature handcrafted design by Roman and Williams. Los Angeles will be the next location.
Free WiFi: Yes
8. The Graduate Hotels
Parent Company: The company is not associated with any major brand, but comes from a partnership of Chicago's AJ Capital Partners (headed by Ben Weprin) and Hong Kong's Gaw Capital Partners, who will invest over $500M to open 20 or more hotels in the next five years.
The Unique Twist: As could be guessed, Weprin's brand is all about the college days. Located in popular college towns sorely lacking a quality hotel, each site will feature color palettes that will match the team colors of a local college. The brand is not about replicating the feeling of an actual dorm, but more the idealization of college. The lobbies contain something that will make guests pull out a cellphone or camera (i.e. a giant ant farm in Tempe, AZ, branch (pictured) that pays homage to the University of Arizona's famed insectology department). The Weprin and the Graduate audience is the 35-45 age group, which may be more college nostalgic than its Millennial counterparts.
Unique Amenities: In addition to distinct and engaging lobbies and palettes, each hotel will feature local cuisine and artwork. Some hotels will have lamps in the shape of the school's mascot, while others will have albums adorning the walls.
Locations: Graduate already has locations in Madison, WI, Charlottesville, VA, Oxford, MS, Athens, GA, and Tempe AZ, and will soon have branches in Richmond, VA, and Lincoln, NE.
Free WiFi: Yes
9. The RL Hotels
Parent Company:The RL is the new brand from Red Lion Hotels, a company with hotels throughout the Pacific Northwest and British Columbia that is dedicated to giving its customers the most intimate and stellar experience of the region possible.
The Unique Twist: RL presents itself as an upscale, three-star hotel for the socially conscious, frugal traveler, and seeks to present a hotel that allows for social discourse. The brand will even launch a program where any guest that donates $100 to Project Wake Up Call—a charitable organization that seeks to shed greater light on the homeless situation in America—will receive a free night. The RL brand is expecting Millennials to be a significant factor in the future.
Unique Amenities:The Baltimore location has not only a stage for TED-style talks and socially conscious performances, but also a bleacher-style seating arrangement called the "Steps" that surrounds the stage and allows for more communal discourse. Instead of room service and in-room coffee machines, the hotel has a café and bar in the lobby that encourages minglng. The staff, dressed in jeans, carries around iPads that will take customers' orders and drive guests into the city in 1971 Volkswagen mini-buses.
Location:The Baltimore branch—which we recently reported on—is the RL's first and only location so far, and resides in a refurbished historic building.
Free WiFi: Yes
10. The Loews OE Collection
Parent Company: The OE Collection was thought up by Loews and chairman Jonathan Tisch during a long meeting about the future of the hotel industry. Seeing themselves as a collection of brands, as opposed to a brand collection, Loews is giving its partners greater independence and shorter management contracts so the hotels don't feel burdened by the name. The name is actually two forms of wordplay, as the OE Collection will offer the "core" of Loews, as well as "original experiences."
The Unique Twist: Feeling that a lifestyle, boutique hotel held more appeal to the upcoming market than a static model, the company decided on a brand of hotels that would adapt to each environment, fully tapping into the culture of the city—whether it be a nightlife or wine-focused environment. The brand is also appealing to multiple demographics, including Millennials and business travelers by focusing on a high degree of service.
Unique Amenities: There are no locations open yet, but Loews is promising that potential customers will be able to not only make their reservation in a traditional way (by phone or email), but will even be able to make a reservation through Twitter.
Locations: The Collection just made an agreement with Toronto's Bisha Hotel and Residences (pictured), which is owned by nightclub and restaurant owner Charles Khabouth. The Bisha has about 100 rooms, 300 condo units, a 24-hour café, a bar, two restaurants and an open roof. The Bisha is planning on opening in 2016.
Free WiFi: No
Parent Company: Marriott's putting their full power behind this brand, including the Marriott Rewards Program, which can lead to free stays if members gain enough points over the course of their stays.
The Unique Twist: Millennials are the name of the game for Moxy. With a unique aesthetic (bright neons and sharp colors), affordable prices and new technologies, the brand is focused on giving the X and Y generations the luxuries they care about. Also, with a focus on self-service, the brand satisfies Millennials desire for independence, while saving costs on staff.
Unique Amenities: In addition to tech-focused rooms with 42-inch TVs and plenty of outlets, Moxy hotels also include spacious, communal lobbies with 24/7 food and drinks, a coffee bar, and even a stocked bar readily available, as well as games like Cards Against Humanity for those who want to hang out and meet new people. Also in the lobby is a massive video wall called "The Guestbook," which plays everything from sports games to clients' Instagram pictures (if given consent, of course).
Locations: The only Moxy location at the moment is in Milan (pictured), but new locations will soon be springing up in both Europe (Frankfurt, Copenhagen, London and Munich) and the US (New Orleans, San Francisco, Seattle, Chicago, Chelsea and Midtown, the latter two of which will be designed by Yabu Pushelberg).
Free WiFi: Yes
12. Nobu Hotels
Parent Company:The Nobu Hospitality Group has been a global staple for restaurants for years now, and their hotel line is easily matching that quality. The Vegas branch located within Caesar's Palace has already won awards from TripAdvisor. Actor Robert De Niro and Hollywood producer Mein Teper are top investors for the brand.
The Unique Twist: Perhaps due to Teper and De Niro's involvement with the brand, Nobu is adopting a very "Hollywood" atmosphere in its hotels. With a "unique chemistry and perfect balance of luxury, fun, craft and theater," Nobu is all about a sulty luxury that can give both domestic and international patrons a enjoyable and elegant stay.
Unique Amenities: Nobu Hotels feature a Japanese aesthetic. In both Vegas and Miami Beach, the rooms have a zen-like quality with plum and gold accents and complementary herb sleep oil and tea. The Vegas location features an impressive penthouse and, due to the location within Caesar's Palace, access to Vegas shows, including Celine Dion and Elton John, while the Miami Beach location features a VIP pool and lounge that overlooks the sea.
Location: As noted, the brand can be found in both Vegas and Eden Rock Miami Beach, but it can also be found in Manila, Riyadh, Chicago, London, Los Cabos and Malibu. Currently, only the Vegas branch is open, with the Miami Beach branch opening soon.
Free WiFi: Yes
13. Proper Hotels
Parent Company: Although the brand was founded by the talent behind the Viceroy Hotel Group—Brad Korzen (the former creator and CEO of Viceroy), Brian De Lowe and Alex Samek—the brand shares no connection with the hotel chain.
The Unique Twist: Proper wishes to take the hotel back to the days when a hotel shared the same level of prestige as museums and monuments. These were the days when a city truly "made it" when a hotel came along. With a unique mix of 19th-century aesthetic and futuristic tech and culture, the Proper Hotels will be the fusion of tradition and innovation, past and present that every hipster, techie, artist and businessman will love.
Unique Amenities: The group expects that each hotel will include luxuries like yoga classes, rooftop lounges, and even indie bands that will play in the hotels' lobbies and bars.
Locations: The first Proper Hotel will open in San Francisco wnear the end of this year. Taking place in a renovated historic building, the hotel will feature three restaurants and even a rooftop bar that allows for a panoramic view of the city. Other planned locations include Hollywood Boulevard (2016) and Austin (2017), which blend both history and culture with a booming tech industry. The group is interested in any city it believes to be "culturally and creatively rich," such as Brooklyn, Santa Monica, Miami and the Napa Valley.
Free WiFi: Currently unknown, but considering the Proper's tech focus, we have no doubt it will be available.
14. Radisson Red
Parent Company: If it wasn't already apparent, Radisson Red is Radisson's attempt to break away from the criticism of their usual no-frills hotels.
The Unique Twist: Focusing heavily on the millennial demographic, the brand's Red mobile app features all the modern bells and whistles: it does check-in, pays for bar tabs, provides info about the hotel's amenities and world news, plays music from Radisson's own radio station and so on. With a sharp design with radical colors and screens everywhere, the Red is gearing up to be a paradise for the tech-loving millennial.
Unique Amenities:Radisson is promising a potting shed, pool hall, reading room pool and even retail opportunities at the Red. The most interesting tech besides the app is the ability to play movies on the walls of your room.
Locations: A prototype at the moment, the brand's set to launch this year in China. It will eventually reach about 60 hotels in various cities worldwide by 2020. Rates will vary based on location--with estimated prices of $125 per night in Minneapolis and $300 in New York.
15. Soho House
Parent Company: The Soho House is an independent company started in 1995, but the brand's meteroric rise in popularity and global expansion is a recent phenomenon.
The Unique Twist: The Soho House is probably the most interesting brand on the list. Not only do most of the chain's locations have 50 rooms or fewer, but the brand is pretty much a private club, with potential members having to submit a résumé to join. But don't think your CEO position or top-tier college will make the process a breeze; Soho was designed specifically for those in creative fields. Without a connection to creative fields, getting into the Soho House will be a struggle. Some locations even feature a trophy wall of ties that they have cut off from unknowing businessmen.
Unique Amenities: Staying true to their artsy reputation, many Soho House locations feature screening rooms, which can be rented for private screenings, alongside their spas and heated pools. Much of the furniture is vintage, and guests can get their choice of small, midsized and large rooms, as well as suites with Egyptian cotton sheets and rainforest showers.
Locations: There are now 13 Soho House branches, with more on the way. Current branches can be found in the UK, Berlin, Istanbul, New York, West Hollywood, Miami, Chicago and Toronto.
16. Thompson Hotels
Parent Company: Thompson Hotels sits in Josh Pritzker's Commune Hotels & Resorts portfolio, joining other boutique hotel brands like Joie de Vivre, Alila and tommie that present their clients with distinct experiences at each location.
The Unique Twist: The Thompson brand claims to focus on the "modern nomad," making them feel welcome and truly part of each city's culture. Thompson hopes that guests feel like locals of each city, "a catalyst to the local culture." Thus, each hotel is a unique product of its environment, all the while retaining an upscale residential feel.
Unique Amenities: Given the Thompson's focus on local feel, your amenities will depend on your location. The Gild Hall in New York (pictured), for example, features a minibar full of Dean and Deluca products, while the Toronto branch will have bathroom amenities by Ren skincare. Even the aesthetic will depend on the branch, with the Toronto branch featuring a sharp and slick orange, black and white palette, while the Thompson Chicago takes a darker, more subdued tone.
Location: There are Thompsons in Chicago, Toronto, London and Miami Beach, with two locations each in Mexico and New York A third location in New York, called The Beekman, will open in 2016, residing in a renovated, iconic building in Lower Manhattan.
Free WiFi: Yes
17. Virgin Hotels
Parent Company: Under the direction of Richard Branson and Virgin, the hotel's policies—even aesthetic—share the same hip and cool atmosphere that the company's other businesses do.
The Unique Twist: Branson and Virgin are working hard to avoid the stuffy atmosphere of many other business-focused hotels, wanting instead to create a place for travelers to work and play without guilt or judgment. This casual atmosphere, combined with a new mobile app called "Lucy," is tailor-made for Millennials. What stands out even more is Virgin's focus on the female traveler. Despite being half of the traveling public, women are not personally catered to at many brands, Branson says. With better lit vanity mirrors and sliding doors for privacy, Branson hopes women feel more pampered and secure during their stays.
Unique Amenities: As one could expect from Branson, the little touches set the hotel apart—most notably dumping all the hidden fees and petty charges that annoy you at just about every other hotel. There are no early check-in/late check-out fees or room service delivery fees. Bottled water is free, and snacks rarely cost more than a dollar. Every night starting at 6pm, the hotel has a social hour that has free premium alcohol.
Locations: The first and currently only Virgin Hotel is in Chicago, but future plans include spots at Nashville (featuring an in-house recording studio) and New York. The Chicago building is no slouch, however, with a two-story lounge called "The Commons Club," a library and a room called "The Shag Room. Don't worry: it's named after the shag carpets.
Free WiFi: Yes