Independent hotel chain expands to Puerto Rico
March 1, 2010
Edition: February 25, 2010 | Volume: 38 | No: 7
Magnuson Hotels adds Aguadilla’s La Cima to its hotel network; interested in adding more Puerto Rico-based hotels to the chain Magnuson Hotels, the world’s largest independent hotel group, announced expansion plans for its low-cost global reservation services to the United Kingdom, the Bahamas and Puerto Rico, CARIBBEAN BUSINESS learned. The company, which expects to double the size of its North American operations in 2010, boosting its network to more than 2,000 hotels, recently added La Cima hotel in Aguadilla to the chain’s existing 1,100 hotel affiliates.
As part of its international expansion, Magnuson also plans to open international headquarters in London later this year. “Global economic conditions of rising unemployment, increased operating costs, higher franchise / marketing fees and falling travel demand are universal struggles for our hospitality industry,” Magnuson Hotels co-CEO Thomas R. Magnuson said during an exclusive interview.
“Magnuson Hotels offer independent hotel owners a real alternative in worldwide reservations to boost their business. Contrary to franchise-brand hotels, independent hotel owners affiliated with Magnuson can maintain the look and feel of their property, while tapping into a worldwide reservations network,” Magnuson’s CEO explained.
Magnuson Hotels has recorded a 36% year-to-date increase in reservation revenue for more than 1,000 affiliates in the face of a 26-year high U.S. unemployment rate and record increased room inventory due to the largest hotel construction pipeline in history, according to official company statistics.
“We began our international expansion last fall and now have 21 international properties in our chain. Through the addition of La Cima, we give our other affiliates a solid Caribbean presence and continue to look for other properties in Puerto Rico that could join our international network,” Magnuson continued. “We look at Puerto Rico as a growth market where our business model can be very viable in helping independent hotel owners diversify their leisure travel presence.”
Magnuson’s profile of properties is typically small hotels with 20 rooms and up, representing individual owners and coming from all market types, ranging from small resorts to highway-based or near military base locations. Minimum quality and service standards are required at all Magnuson properties—above all, cleanliness and safety, said Melissa Magnuson, co-founder & co-CEO of Magnuson Hotels.
“From an owner’s perspective, our affiliates can access our reservation system with no activation fee, and there is no long-term agreement. We make money on a percentage of the bookings we deliver for them,” Melissa Magnuson explained.
“The consumer, on the other hand, can find the best deals throughout the network. By registering in our Star Club, they receive a promotional code they can use when making reservations at any of the Magnuson hotels worldwide. Program benefits include special promotions for restaurants and other attractions.”
About Magnuson Hotels, the fastest growing hotel chain in history.
In only seven years, Magnuson Hotels headquartered in Spokane, WA has become the world’s largest independent hotel group, representing nearly 1500 hotels and a combined affiliate base with assets in excess of $5.5 Billion. One of the top 10 global hotel chains, Magnuson Hotels was the #1 Hotel Company of Inc. Magazine’s 2009 annual ranking of the 5,000 fastest growing privately owned U.S. companies. With a four year reservation sales growth of 595%, Magnuson Hotels is listed in the top 100 U.S. business services companies.