Intercontinental Hotel Group will launch the first mainstream hotel brand focused on the fitness minded traveler. The new chain will be called "Even" and will feature a large fully equipped fitness center in the lobby and fitness minded furnishings in each hotel room.
Research shows that business travelers increasingly are looking for hotels with truly functional gyms and not small closet afterthought exercise spaces. Currently many top luxury branded hotels and spas have fitness centers comparable to health clubs. Canyon Ranch Hotel and Spas in three US locations is noted for its excellent fitness centers on-site.
Intercontinental whose brands include Holiday Inn, Crowne Plaza, Hotel Indigo, Intercontinental, Candlewood and Staybridge Suites plan to open 100 US locations of Even Hotels. The new concept is truly distinctive and quite different than their existing properties.
The Even Hotels will also serve health oriented meals in its restaurants. In room amenities will include a coat rack that doubles as a pull up bar and a luggage rack that is usable as an exercise bench.
Although many might see this as too niche oriented, I believe it is a good branding idea for the relatively stagnant hospitality industry seeking to meet the needs of travelers who want to maintain their fitness regimens on the road without having to search for local health clubs.
The first location (not yet specified) is scheduled to open in 2013.
Watching out for you everyday.