Holiday Inn Express Opens in California Wine Country

March 02, 2009 // Franchising.com // IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group) [LON: IHG, NYSE: IHG (ADRs)], the world's largest hotel group by number of rooms, announced today that the Holiday Inn Express and Suites Napa Valley-American Canyon will open within a month. The new-build property is the 18th Holiday Inn Express hotel in California to showcase the brand's new sign, which is the seal of approval that this hotel exemplifies the standards of the $1 billion Holiday Inn brand relaunch program.

The 101-room Holiday Inn Express is ideally located on state Route 29, in the world famous Napa Valley Wine Country, home to the finest wineries in the U.S. Situated at Napa Junction across from beautiful Main Street Park, the hotel is just a short drive away from downtown Napa, with world-renowned restaurants, boutique shops and charming Victorian homes. More than 350 wineries and numerous championship golf courses are also nearby. Notable local businesses include Foster's Wine Group, Coca Cola, Robert Mondavi, Six Flags Discovery Kingdom and Infineon Raceway.

Guests at the Holiday Inn Express will experience a comfortable and smart environment with innovative preferred guest upgrades to ensure a productive stay while traveling for business or leisure. The hotel's newly enhanced complimentary Express Start® breakfast bar will feature a full selection of breakfast items including a rotation of egg and meat selections, biscuits, yogurts, fruit and the brand's proprietary cinnamon roll and Smart Roast® coffee. The SimplySmartTM shower incorporates a proprietary Stay SmartTM Kohler showerhead, signature shower curtain with curved rod, upgraded 100 percent cotton terry towels and a custom line of cinnamon-scented bath products. Guests will also enjoy the SimplySmartTM bedding collection where they will find new crisp fresh bedding which features an attractive decorative throw, a medium-weight duvet blanket and soft 200 thread-count sheets.

First announced in 2007, the Holiday Inn brand relaunch program was established to create a more contemporary brand image as part of the drive to increase quality and consistency across the global portfolio. The program focuses on arrival and welcome services, guestroom, and guest bath comfort. The global estate of more than 3,200 Holiday Inn and Holiday Inn Express properties is expected to be relaunched by the end of 2010.

Elements of the relaunch for Holiday Inn Express include:

Redesigned Brand Signage

An evolution of the iconic script logo, energizing the signature color green and eliminating the current shield shape for a more refreshed and contemporary look.

Warm Welcome

A new signature arrival - including new lighting, landscaping and design features - that creates an energized and branded sense of welcome that is universally recognizable. Customized music and scent selections also engage guests in a complete sensory experience, and a decluttered front desk to promote a more efficient and interactive check-in process.

New Service Promise

A best-in-class service culture - "Stay Real" - to further ensure the team develops the behaviors and skills to best serve guests so they feel like individuals and not numbers. Genuine people delivering real service. Leading the charge will be a newly created position at each hotel - the Guest Experience Champion.

"Holiday Inn Express hotels are designed to be the smart choice for value-conscious business and leisure travelers," said John Merkin, senior vice president, Brand Management, Holiday Inn Brands, The Americas. "With more than 1,900 properties worldwide and more than 700 properties in the pipeline, the Holiday Inn Express portfolio continues to expand in markets like Napa Valley, providing our guests with an enhanced stay experience at a great value. We welcome this hotel into the Holiday Inn family with the brand new sign and everything it represents."

Standard Holiday Inn Express hotel guest rooms feature comfortable queen or king-sized beds, a sitting area with a lounge chair and an in-room coffee machine featuring complimentary Smart Roast 100% Arabica coffee. Business travelers will find large desks, ergonomic chairs, free high-speed wireless internet access, free local and toll free phone calls and phones with private voicemail. The new Napa Valley property offers a variety of additional amenities including an outdoor patio area with swimming pool and spa, fitness center, business center and 2,000 square feet of meeting space for business functions or special events. The hotel also plans to offer a complimentary wine hour for guests.

"Holiday Inn Express hotels are fresh, clean and convenient for travelers," said Kay Eardley, general manager, Holiday Inn Express and Suites Napa Valley-American Canyon. "We invested $13 million to build this property, and we're especially pleased to be among the first wave of hotels to showcase the brand's new sign."

Holiday Inn Express hotels participate in IHG's guest loyalty program, Priority Club® Rewards. The industry's first and largest guest loyalty program has 42 million members. Priority Club Rewards membership is free and guests can enroll by logging on www.priorityclub.com, calling 1-888-211-9874 or by inquiring at the front desk of this hotel or any of IHG's more than 4,150 hotels worldwide.

The Holiday Inn Express hotel and Suites Napa Valley-American Canyon is owned by BKL LLC and managed by BKL Hospitality Group, under a license agreement with a company in the InterContinental Hotels Group and is located at 5001 Main St., American Canyon, Calif., 94503. Telephone: 888-866-6970.

About Holiday Inn Express

Holiday Inn Express hotels are modern hotels for value-oriented travelers. Fresh, clean and uncomplicated, Holiday Inn Express hotels offer competitive rates for both business and leisure travelers. Guests Stay Smart® at Holiday Inn Express hotels where they enjoy a free hot Express Start® Breakfast Bar, free high-speed internet access and free local phone calls (US and Canada only). There are currently more than 1,800 Holiday Inn Express hotel locations around the globe.

Notes to Editors:

InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) [LON:IHG, NYSE:IHG (ADRs)] is the world's largest hotel group by number of rooms. IHG owns, manages, leases or franchises, through various subsidiaries, more than 4,150 hotels and almost 620,000 guest rooms in nearly 100 countries and territories around the world. The Group owns a portfolio of well recognized and respected hotel brands including InterContinental® Hotels & Resorts, Hotel Indigo®, Crowne Plaza® Hotels & Resorts, Holiday Inn® Hotels and Resorts, Holiday Inn Express®, Staybridge Suites® and Candlewood Suites®, and also manages the world's largest hotel loyalty program, Priority Club® Rewards with 42 million members worldwide.

IHG has more than 1,700 hotels in its development pipeline, which will create 200,000 jobs worldwide over the next few years.

InterContinental Hotels Group PLC is the Group's holding company and is incorporated in Great Britain and registered in England and Wales.

IHG offers information and online reservations for all its hotel brands at www.ihg.com and information for the Priority Club Rewards program at www.priorityclub.com. For the latest news from IHG, visit our online Press Office at www.ihg.com/media

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