Hilton announced a brand new hotel brand a couple of weeks ago – Tru.
You won’t be seeing one of these anywhere in Europe for a while, but it interesting to see where it will be positioned.
Fundamentally, hotel chains have usually equated ‘budget’ with ‘dull’. Your average ibis or Holiday Inn Express hotel does not exactly set the pulse racing. Interesting, modern design does not necessarily cost more than tediously boring design and there has been a move to develop brands which operate at low price points but are attractive to ‘youthful mindset demographic’ travellers.
Starwood’s Aloft brand is an example of a brand which is targetting this market, although the pricing of these hotels is more Holiday Inn than Holiday Inn Express. I reviewed the Aloft at Excel in London here, and was impressed. They are also in Liverpool.
Core features of Tru will include:
- a large lobby (‘The Hive’) of around 3,000 square feet with spaces for ‘lounging, working, eating and playing’
- ‘The Play Zone’, a public space with table games and TV’s
- a reception desk which also doubles as a convenience store
- free breakfast
- bedrooms with all-white beds, no desks (a chair will have a small table attached to the arm), large bathrooms, 55 inch TV, lots of plugs, no wardrobes
- fitness centre
- free wi-fi
- 150 TV channels
There are apparently over 100 development agreements signed for Tru although all are in North America so far. I have generally been impressed with stays at Aloft and similar hotels and I think this may work out OK for Hilton.
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