Friday, December 7, 2012

Choice Hotels Breaks Ground on Three New Hotels

Work has begun on three new hotels, with the official groundbreaking of three Cambria Suites in New York. The properties will be located in Times Square and Chelsea in Manhattan, and downtown White Plains in Westchester County. Choice Hotels International, the company behind brands like Econo Lodge, Clarion and Comfort Inn, broke ground Thursday on the two Manhattan hotels, at 30 West 46th Street in Midtown, and at 123 West 28th Street. The ceremony comes 24 hours after the chain began construction of its hotel in White Plains. 

The Times Square location will be the first to open in the city, in the winter of 2014. The Chelsea hotel is scheduled to open in the following quarter. The hotel in White Plains, will be the first to be up and running. It is scheduled for a ribbon cutting in the summer of next year.

All three hotels will be under a brand aimed at business travelers, Cambria Suites. It will be Choice's highest-end option to date, according to Steve Joyce, the company's chief executive.

Though there are about 20 Cambria Suites open in secondary markets, work on the New York locations marks the beginning of the company's charge into major cities. "Today represents sort of a real turning point for the brand," said Mr. Joyce, who noted that New York was chosen because of its "visibility."

While the rooms are a suite setup, with separate sleeping and living areas, the price includes extras like parking, Wi-Fi and gym access for which other hotels charge.

Mr. Joyce said he is looking to attract travelers who want to stay comfortably for as good a price as possible. "Value is the key to all their decision making and Choice is known for that," Mr. Joyce said.