Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Why is the Indian Rupee losing its value

the rupee has crashed 18.3% this year. But the fact is that India is the only country in the region with such a huge current account deficit, where imports far outstrip exports, a number that is dodgy. The trade deficit and fiscal deficit numbers cannot change overnight, and they did not deteriorate overnight either. Which makes this topic extremely debatable, to why the Indian Rupee is losing value at an torrid pace.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Dubai - a hot hub of luxury resorts

Millennium & Copthorne has revealed it will be moving into the deluxe serviced apartments sector when it opens a modern and stylish property in the popular Dubai Marina area in the coming six months.
The brand is already one of the world’s largest owned-and-managed hotel companies, with more than 120 hotels across 20 countries.
Once open, this Marina Promenade property will boast 151 spacious and contemporary serviced apartments, comprising 91 one-bedroom, 36 two-bedroom, 13 three-bedroom units, two penthouse apartments and eight villas.
Bringing together excellence in service, value and location, I foresee a good level of demand from the start.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Dunkin Donuts opens 10,000th store

Dunkin’ Donuts, America’s all-day, everyday stop for coffee and baked goods, today opened its 10,000th restaurant. The landmark 10,000th new restaurant is located in Xi’An, China. Several other Dunkin’ Donuts restaurants, which opened throughout the world over the past few days, vied for the honor of being the 10,000th location. These include three new locations in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, as well as new restaurants in Bogota, Colombia and Kingsland, Ga.
“We are proud to have opened the world’s 10,000th Dunkin’ Donuts restaurant in China, a country which we believe offers tremendous opportunity to both our Dunkin’ Donuts and Baskin-Robbins brands,” said Nigel Travis, CEO of Dunkin’ Brands and President of Dunkin’ Donuts. “From its beginnings as a single restaurant in Quincy, Mass., Dunkin’ Donuts is today a global brand located in 32 countries around the world. Our geographic diversity is truly a testimony to the fact that customers everywhere, from China to Saudi Arabia, Colombia and Georgia, appreciate what Dunkin’ Donuts offers - high quality food and beverages served in a friendly, fast environment at a great value.”

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

75% of New York City Visitors Happy With Their Hotel

Almost three-quarters of New York City visitors are happy with their hotel stays according to a recent survey compiled by A leading hotel booking site for New York City, specifically looked at NYC travelers' evaluations of their accommodations over the past 12 months.
Indeed, despite headlines like the one run late last year by the Associated Press, "Bedbugs Scaring Off New York City Tourists," only 13% of NYC guests awarded their hotels a negative rating. A full 73% were satisfied with their accommodations, with the remaining respondents attributing a neutral evaluation to their hotels.
When looking at the various areas inside Manhattan, the Downtown area performed a bit better than Midtown and Uptown, but the differences among the three regions were too small to be considered significant. Therefore, travelers should not be concerned about hotel rooms when they go to NYC. Of course, with the price these hotels charge, the product better be good. The Average ADR in NYC is the highest in USA.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Taj Palace New Delhi Debuts Ultimate New Suite

Taj Palace New Delhi, set on six landscaped acres in the heart of Delhi's diplomatic enclave just 20 minutes from the international airport, is fresh from a grand renovation that updated its 402 gracious rooms and suites, the exclusive Taj Club Lounge and 40,000-square-feet of banquet and conference space.
The jewel in the crown of this restoration is the luxurious Tata Suite. Named for Taj Hotels' founder, this 7,500-square-foot retreat is well-equipped to accommodate world leaders, corporate scions and celebrities alike.
The price to rent this suite is $15,500/nt.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Indian rupee slides

The Indian rupee slid to a record low of 52.77 on Monday as signs of a sharp slowdown in Asia's third-largest economy prompted investors to buy dollars.
Traders said possible buying by local oil importers, the biggest buyers of dollars in the local forex market, also pressured the currency.
The local currency is the worst performing unit against the dollar among major Asian peers this year and investors continue to stay bearish on the rupee, a Reuters poll last week showed.
In fact, India may face its worst financial crisis in decades if it fails to stem a slide in the rupee, leaving the central bank with a difficult choice over how to make best use of its limited reserves to maintain the confidence of foreign investors.

Travel Exports Up 13.9 Percent for 2011

David Huether, senior vice president of economics and research at the U.S. Travel Association, provides analysis on the Commerce Department announcement that the overall trade deficit edged down slightly to $43.5 billion in October:

"Travel exports are up a strong 13.9 percent compared to 2010, outpacing not only other service exports but exports of capital and consumer goods as well.

"As our country's number one domestic export industry, international travel in the United States generated $241 billion in economic output last year, which supported 1.8 million American jobs that cannot be outsourced. Increased travel exports over the past year have been a key reason why job growth in the travel industry has outpaced the rest of the economy by 60 percent through October of this year. The travel industry created 115,000 jobs through the first 10 months of 2011, accounting for nine percent of the total U.S. jobs created this year.

"Though positive, these figures could be greater if a significant barrier were removed: a U.S. visa system that fails to match the demand of millions of international travelers who want to travel to the United States. Research shows that U.S. visa system reform would bring additional international business and leisure travelers to the U.S., creating additional jobs and economic output for our struggling economy. Given the fragile state of the economy, we should not wait to implement important reforms."

Friday, December 9, 2011

Mobile digital wallets in - traditional wallets out

With the value of transactions made over mobile devices estimated to be $240 billion this year (Juniper Research) and predicted to triple that size over the next five years, it's not surprising that the battle over mobile wallets will continue to intensify. And with analysts at Forrester predicting that by 2016 consumers may be able to leave their traditional leather wallet at home and pay for most of their shopping over their handset, retailers need to think about the impact of mobile wallets as they build out their loyalty programs.

Surge expected in mobile coupons

Juniper Research forecasts that the total redemption value of mobile coupons worldwide will be more than $43 billion by 2016, representing an eightfold increase from $5.4 billion this year. Cost effective mobile coupon campaigns provide merchants with an easy way to build customer loyalty. Has anyone used mobile coupons to book?

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

The importance of Capital Expenditures

Normally when a new hotel breaks ground it creates panic in the competitive set and puts in motion a ticking "time bomb" for the competitors. With everything else being constant, if the only difference between the new build and the competition is the condition of the existing property, then investing capital expenditures into that property while the new build is under construction can negate much of the downfall when the new build opens.
Also, if the competitive set is in disrepair and the market is looking for a renovated product and can support that increase in rate, then being the first mover in the market and getting a head start on your capital improvements can provide significant gains in demand and rate. Would you agree?

Are hotels ready to charge higher rates?

Demand is increasing, occupancy is rising, but rate continues to lag. Are we being to cautious in our rate management? Are we missing an opportunity to generate more revenue because we are tentative? I can't answer that question for anyone else's properties, but it has made me ask: can we be more aggressive with rates-should we be?

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Trump Towers in Toronto

In the heart of downtown Toronto, Trump is building the tallest residential structure in the city—and in all of Canada. The articulated spire atop 65 stories will extend more than 900 feet above the hotel lobby, to be located at the corner of Bay and Adelaide streets.
The hotel will have 261 rooms and suites, many with skyline views, starting at 550-square-feet. The 31st-floor restaurant, STOCK, will have chef Todd Clarmo at the helm. There's also an 18,000-square-foot spa in the works. The opening date is scheduled for Jan. 31, 2012

Credit Cards making a comeback?

On Black Friday, payments made with credit cards rose 7.4% from a year earlier, vs. an increase of 3.4% for payments with signature debit cards, according to First Data, a payments processing firm. An analysis by Javelin Strategy & Research forecasts that credit card payments for online purchases will increase 63% from 2011 to 2016, vs. 2% for debit cards.
During the recession, the use of credit cards declined as cost-conscious consumers switched to debit cards and cash for their purchases. Now, though, the pendulum is swinging back, analysts say. While overall consumer debt continued to decline in the third quarter, the number of applications for credit rose for the second consecutive quarter, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
Personally, I say use Credit Cards but do not misuse them.