Hyatt announced earlier this week that they were acquiring Apple Leisure Group. The move will add 100 existing hotels to the Hyatt family and another couple dozen that are in the pipeline for Apple (ALG). Here’s a quick description of ALG from the press release:
ALG’s hotel portfolio consists of over 33,000 rooms operating in 10 countries. The portfolio has grown from nine resorts in 2007 to approximately 100 properties by the end of 2021 and has a pipeline of 24 executed deals with a large number of additional hotels in the development process. ALG’s Unlimited Vacation Club® is an exclusive travel club whose participants enjoy preferred rates and other benefits at AMR™ Collection properties.
The acquisition is pretty sizable and doesn’t seem to completely align with Hyatt’s core business. There are elements, for sure, where there is plenty of synergy (those 100 leisure properties in places like Europe, Mexico and the Caribbean). Other pieces, such as Apple Vacations are less clear how they fit into Hyatt’s vision. Apple Vacations is a vacation package company that specializes in warm weather packages to places like Mexico, the Caribbean and Hawaii. ALG also owns properties such as CheapCaribbean.com.
Still, for Hyatt fans, it’s hard to get disappointed about 100 new leisure hotels coming into the fold. There are a number of all-inclusive hotels that are part of the deal, which continues to grow a sector Hyatt has had some focus on over the past few years. And, there are a number of hotels that we’ll have to wait to see how they’ll integrate into an award chart.
A first look through the list of properties shows some desirable destinations. Mallorca has been on my radar for a while and the Secrets Mallorca Villamil puts that dot in the map (and looks really nice in the press pics).
We’re going to need to wait for the transaction to close before we have any idea what World of Hyatt members should expert for earning and redeeming options at the new properties. Hyatt has some experience recently with unique integrations. Look no further than the growing partnership with Small Luxury Hotels of the World for how Hyatt is incorporating more ways to earn and redeem for their core members.
There’s also the purchase of Two Roads Hospitality, which brought in brands like Destination Hotels, Alila, Thompson and Joie de Vivre. For the most part, these have all been really positive additions to the Hyatt family.
The Final Two Pennies
The variety and number of brands under the Hyatt umbrella has grown immensely in the past 10 years. While that might lead to confusion down the road, I’ve found my stays at some of the bolt-on brands like Thompson to meet my expectations when it comes to elite recognition. In a number of cases, they’ve exceeded those expectations.
It’s hard to know how what the integration of ALG will look like long-term, but I’m cautiously excited for the possibilities.
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