LIFE'S A BEACH

IHG, Iberostar Partner on Resorts, All-Inclusives in Caribbean, Americas, Med and More

Iberostar Beach Resort Rose Hall, Jamaica

In a move that reflects new industry-wide focus on beach and all-inclusive holidays, InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) and Spanish, family-run Iberostar Hotels & Resorts have revealed they've penned a long-term (30+ year) agreement for resort and all-inclusives.

According to the companies' release, Iberostar will retain 100 per cent ownership and autonomy, while adding up to 70 of its beachfront resorts (24.3k rooms) to IHG’s system.

This will boost IHG’s global system size by up to 3%.

The first Iberostar properties set to join the IHG system this DEC include resorts in Mexico, the Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Brazil and the Canary Islands (Spain).

Further properties in Spain, Southern Europe and North Africa are anticipated to join IHG’s system over the next two years, as will some resorts in Iberostar's development pipeline. Iberostar’s urban hotels and properties in Cuba are excluded from the deal. The 70 selected properties focus heavily on Mexico (22 per cent) and the Caribbean including the Dominican Republic (13 per cent) and Jamaica (8 per cent). But Spain alone is home to 40 per cent of the selected properties.

IHG notes it has fewer than 20 resort properties in the countries where the Iberostar Beachfront Resorts properties are located, so the deal "significantly increases and broadens IHG’s resort footprint."

The 70 Iberostar beachfront resorts add to IHG’s existing 260 resort properties across brands including Six Senses, Regent, InterContinental, Kimpton, Hotel Indigo, Crowne Plaza, Holiday Inn and Holiday Inn Club Vacations. The 70 new properties will appear in the IHG system under the Iberostar Beachfront Resorts brand, which will become the 18th brand for IHG.

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Keith Barr, Chief Executive Officer, IHG Hotels & Resorts, said: “Guests have told us of their wish for increased choice of resort and all-inclusive destinations within our brand portfolio. We are delighted to address that by working with such a well-respected, experienced and like-minded partner as Iberostar, and to see more amazing hotels join our system that continues IHG’s growth in so many of the world’s most attractive markets and destinations."

Doubling Down on the All-Inclusive Trend

IHG notes that demand for resort and all-inclusive stays has been growing, particularly post-pandemic, saying that travellers now especially are looking for:

  • high quality experiences and
  • stress-free holidays, with
  • the ability to maximize loyalty program membership.

At the same time, travellers have more choice in resort vacations, "with luxury and upper upscale destinations creating more wellbeing and sustainability-led experiences that tailor to changing guest expectations."

Win-Win

Iberostar gains access to IHG’s enterprise platform, including its distribution channels and the IHG One Rewards loyalty program with more than 100 million members.

The companies note they "share many company values," including sustainability and responsible tourism. Iberostar’s Wave of Change movement  promotes the responsible consumption of seafood and the improvement of coastlines. As part of the agreement, IHG will work with Iberostar to create opportunities for joint sustainability initiatives.

Sabina Fluxá, Vice-Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Iberostar Group, commented, “The alliance with IHG combines our strengths, represents a decisive step forward in the distribution of Iberostar’s beachfront resorts, and reinforces our position as a benchmark in responsible tourism. By working together we will grow our portfolio and we are really looking forward to hosting IHG loyalty members in our collection of premium and luxury beachfront resorts and all-inclusive properties.”

Lynn Elmhirst

Editor

With a background in broadcast news and travel lifestyles TV production, Lynn is just as comfortable behind or in front of the camera as she is slinging words into compelling stories at her laptop. Having been called a multi-media ‘content charmer’, Lynn’s other claim to fame is the ability to work 24/7, forgoing sleep until the job is done. Documented proof exists in a picture of Lynn at the closing celebrations of an intense week, standing, champagne in hand - sound asleep. That’s our kind of gal.

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