SILVER SPRING, Md. // PRNewswire // -- While hotel development across the globe has slowed, leading lodging company Choice Hotels International, Inc. (NYSE: CHH) is pleased to announce the future addition of two new Caribbean hotels to its portfolio of more than 6,000 franchised properties worldwide. The new Comfort Inn hotel and Ascend Collection member hotel mark the first-ever Choice-brand properties for the island of Haiti, further expanding the great Choice Hotels lodging options for travelers across the Caribbean. The Comfort Inn hotel which will open in 2010 will mark the first global hotel brand that the island of Haiti has hosted in more than a decade.
"Choice is extremely proud to take a leadership position in revitalizing Haiti's tourism product," said Brian Parker, vice president of emerging markets and new business development for Choice Hotels. "We are equally excited to work with a company the caliber of SIMACT to bring two of our brands to the island."
Both hotels will be located in Haiti's historic township of Jacmel, known as the island's cultural center thanks to its popular carnival festivities and arts, music and film festivals. The Comfort Inn hotel will feature 32 guest rooms with breathtaking views of the shores of the Caribbean Sea, featuring all the amenities travelers can expect from Comfort Inn hotels, including free breakfast and free high-speed Internet access.
The newly-built luxury Ascend Collection member hotel will offer 120 elegantly-appointment guestrooms and is planned as part of the area's new Belle Rive development project, which will also include a residential community, retail, dining, entertainment, recreational and marina facilities. This Ascend Collection member hotel will be the second Caribbean location for the membership program after its first location in the region -- Le Consulat hotel of San Juan, Puerto Rico -- opened in late 2008.
"Our Ascend Collection program is an excellent membership opportunity for upscale independent hotels and we are thrilled that the Caribbean is at the forefront of our international expansion," said Kevin Lewis, brand president of upscale and extended stay for Choice Hotels.
"The new collaborative relationship between Choice Hotels and SIMACT will have a significantly positive impact on the burgeoning tourism industry of the southeastern coast of Haiti," said Lesly Kernisant, president of SIMACT, owner of the new Comfort Inn hotel and Ascend Collection member hotel.
Choice Hotels currently boasts 9 Caribbean properties, a total of 815 guestrooms, in the Bahamas, Cayman Island, Curacao, Puerto Rico, and the Turks and Caicos Islands. Ascend Collection is an elite network of Historic, Unique and Boutique member hotels that made its debut at the end of 2008 and now has more than 30 hotels throughout the United States, Canada and now, the Caribbean.
SIMACT, Inc. is a New York-based company with a range of investment interests that are focused upon the Republic of Haiti. SIMACT (Societe Immobiliere d'Agriculture, de Commerce, et de Tourisme) was founded in 1996 by a group of Haitian professionals, initially focusing upon real estate development opportunities. The company, which began with six investors, now has 51 shareholders. It has expanded the original vision of the founders and now encompasses investment and ownership in several key areas of enterprise - tourism, mining, financial services, and agriculture. With a capitalization investment in excess of $5,000,000, the company is now poised to take full advantage of its position as one of the most dynamic and progressive American companies engaged in business undertakings in Haiti. SIMACT is currently engaged in several exciting new initiatives in the areas of tourism, mining, and financial services that are based upon the platform of development and success that the company has experienced to date.
Choice Hotels International, Inc. franchises more than 6,000 hotels, representing more than 485,000 rooms in the United States and more than 35 other countries and territories. As of September 30, 2009, more than 700 hotels are under construction, awaiting conversion or approved for development in the United States, representing more than 59,000 rooms, and more than 100 hotels, representing approximately 9,400 rooms, are under construction, awaiting conversion or approved for development in more than 20 other countries and territories. The company's Comfort Inn, Comfort Suites, Quality, Sleep Inn, Clarion, Cambria Suites, MainStay Suites, Suburban Extended Stay Hotel, Econo Lodge and Rodeway Inn brands serve guests worldwide. In addition, via its Ascend Collection membership program, travelers in the United States, Canada and the Caribbean have upscale lodging options at historic, boutique and unique hotels.
Choice Hotels, Choice Hotels International, Comfort Inn, Comfort Suites, Quality, Sleep Inn, Clarion, Cambria Suites, MainStay Suites, Suburban Extended Stay Hotel, Econo Lodge, Rodeway Inn and Ascend Collection are proprietary trademarks and service marks of Choice Hotels International.
(C) 2009 Choice Hotels International, Inc. All rights reserved.
SOURCE Choice Hotels International, Inc.