Rendering of IntercityHotel in Rotterdam-Schiedam Latest HITs: Marriott on safari; Starwood Capital sells in Spain; Deutsche to RotterdamBy Jeffrey Weinstein | June 20, 2023Share The latest news on development, M&A, brand news and more. Marriott's second safari lodge. Marriott International has signed an agreement with Delaware Investment Ltd. to open its first JW Marriott luxury safari lodge in the Serengeti, Tanzania. Expected to open in 2026, the lodge will be situated within the Serengeti National Park, a protected UNESCO World Heritage Site. JW Marriott Serengeti Lodge is expected to offer 30 private suites, including two presidential suites, all of which will have their own swimming pool and deck area. Additionally, extensive food, beverage and meeting facilities are planned. JW Marriott Serengeti Lodge will sit between the Grumeti and Mbalageti rivers and mark the brand’s second luxury safari lodge in Africa, following the opening of JW Marriott Masai Mara Lodge earlier this year in the Masai Mara National Reserve in Kenya. Marriott International currently operates more than 120 properties in Africa across its portfolio.Two weeks of negative RevPAR growth. R.W. Baird analyst Michael Bellisario noted in his weekly recap on Friday that RevPAR growth in the U.S. was negative for two consecutive weeks ending June 3 and June 10. June 3 showed a -1% dip and the following week saw RevPAR -1.2%, mostly due to lower occupancy year-over-year. Resort RevPAR was down 5% to 6%, midscale was off 2% to 4%, and economy was down 5% to 6%.HHM launches brand. HHM Hotels, Philadelphia, has launched Echelon Luxury & Lifestyle to support independent owners and investors in driving maximum revenue, value, and optimal profitability. Of the 240 hotels managed by HHM Hotels, Echelon represents 50-plus hotels and resorts across the country. HHM stated the brand’s operational edge is driving bookings and direct business for owners through omnichannel distribution initiatives hyper-focused on maximum penetrations within the widest range of consumer markets. Echelon is centered around a suite of creative divisions and in-house studios whose impact encompasses the entire arena of hospitality and lifestyle services. The Culinary Studio by Echelon develops 360-degree food-and-beverage programs, while its Creative Studio develops full-service creative and branding services, including messaging for style guides, photography, and OS&E sourcing and development.Cvent deal finalized. Blackstone has completed its $4.6 billion acquisition of meetings and events tech company Cvent in a deal first announced in mid-March. The $8.50 per share that stockholders received represents a 52% gain over the average share price for the 90 days preceding the January report that first leaked acquisition news. Prior to that, Cvent's shares had fallen about 34% last year, according to Reuters. A subsidiary of the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority is now a significant minority investor in Cvent. Vista Equity Partners, which had been the company's majority investor, remains a stakeholder. Vista first took Cvent private in 2016 when it acquired the company for $1.65 billion, and then returned Cvent to public trading in late 2021.Starwood Capital sells in Spain. Spanish investment bank Banca March has acquired Starwood Capital Group’s 80% stake in three Spanish island hotels – two on Fuerteventura in the Canary Islands, and one on Ibiza in the Balearic Islands. The price was undisclosed. Meliá Hotels retains the remaining 20% ownership of the three properties and will continue to operate the hotels. The three properties, totalling 765 rooms, are the 287-room Sol Beach House Ibiza (to be repositioned under the Meliá Hotels & Resorts brand); the 418-room Meliá Fuerteventura; and the 60-room Innside Fuerteventura. The three hotels were part of a portfolio of seven Spanish beachfront hotels, totalling 2,933 keys, that Starwood Capital acquired an 80% stake in from Melia in 2015. The other four properties were sold to London & Regional in 2017.Deutsche grows IntercityHotels. Deutsche Hospitality recently signed an agreement for a new IntercityHotel in Rotterdam-Schiedam together with the joint venture between Dutch project development company De Veste Schiedam B.V. and Necron GmbH. The hotel is expected to open by the end of 2025. The 18-story, 283-room new build with 20 long-stay units will be the first IntercityHotel representing the brand’s "Next Gen" concept. At present, Deutsche Hospitality operates four hotels in the Netherlands, among them two IntercityHotels. Two more IntercityHotels are currently under construction in Breda and Leiden.Noble adds project director. Noble Investment Group has appointed John Bianco as senior project director of development. He will help execute the development of Noble’s midscale extended-stay hotel strategies. Bianco joins Noble from WaterWalk Real Estate Development, where he was the vice president of construction. Previously, he was a senior construction manager with WoodSpring Hotels.Hospitality deal volume trends. The travel and tourism industry has witnessed a 41% year-on-year (YoY) decline in deal activity from 475 deals announced during January-May 2022 to 282 during the first five of months of 2023, according to GlobalData. All the deal types under coverage registered decline in volume. For instance, merger and acquisitions (M&A) deals volume decreased by 43% while the number of venture financing deals and private equity deals YoY declined by 34% and 44%, respectively, during January to May 2023. North America experienced a decline of 48% in deals volume during January to May 2023 compared to the same period during the previous year while Europe, Asia Pacific and South and Central America regions registered decline of 49%, 27% and 36%, respectively. Meanwhile, deals volume for the Middle East and Africa region remained unchanged.Minor grows in Italy. Minor Hotels, Bangkok, will launch its Tivoli Hotels & Resorts brand in Italy, with the addition later this month of a 58-key property in Portopiccolo, near Trieste, in northern Italy. The mixed-use Tivoli Portopiccolo Sistiana Resort includes 73 branded apartments. The resort, a former member of the Marriott Luxury Collection, is part of the Portopiccolo complex owned by the “Porto Piccolo Fund” managed by Investire SGR (Group Banca Finnat). Tivoli continues its expansion in Europe where it recently added a property in Amsterdam, an all-inclusive resort in Alvor in the Algarve, south of Portugal, and will soon launch in Tenerife in Spain.Ruby adds in Dublin. The Ruby Group will add its second property to Dublin in 3Q24, a new build with 257 rooms on Middle Abbey Street in city center. The Munich-based hotel group has teamed up with Dublin-based company Fitzwilliam Real Estate as its partner. The conception of the interior design in the sense of Ruby's Lean Luxury philosophy is carried out by Ruby's own design team. The opening is planned for the end of 2025.Hilton grows in Delhi. Hilton has signed the Hilton Sohna Resort & Spa, marking the debut of its flagship brand in the Delhi-NCR region. This marks Hilton’s second hotel and management agreement with the Dangayach Group, following the recent signing of the country’s first Waldorf Astoria in Jaipur. Spread across 9.3 acres, the165-key resort will feature 105 Palace Rooms and 60 Villas and have 7,500 square metres of indoor and outdoor space dedicated to meetings and social events.Marriott milestone. Marriott International has opened its 500th hotel in Greater China – the 87-villa Rissai Valley, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve in Jiuzhaigou, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a World Biosphere Reserve. With more than 400 hotels in its China pipeline, the company said it plans to bolster its position there with 47 hotels expected to open in the region in 2023 – adding close to 13,000 guestrooms.