August 02, 2012 // Franchising.com // Holiday Inn, one of the world’s most iconic hotel brands, today marks its 60th Anniversary and the start of a global consumer campaign to celebrate the brand’s innovative heritage.
Back in the early fifties, vacations were beyond the means of the average American family and many hotels fell short of providing what travellers really wanted. Entrepreneur, Kemmons Wilson, soon realised this and in 1952 opened the first Holiday Inn hotel - a new concept of hotel that both business and leisure travellers could count on for friendly service, comfort and a truly relaxing atmosphere.
Alongside reliable and friendly service, Holiday Inn has a rich history of ‘firsts’ for being innovative and improving guest experiences. When launched it was the first hotel to introduce many things we take for granted today like TVs, in–room telephones, air conditioning, free ice, free parking, a full service restaurant and a pool, all at affordable prices. Using insight and guest feedback Holiday Inn has continued to evolve. It was the first hotel brand to allow kids to eat and stay for free; and the first to take online bookings. The spirit of innovation has continued with the launch of Holiday Inn Express – the fastest growing brand in the world, offering a convenient and comfortable experience for guests and at great value.
Today, three people check into a Holiday Inn every second and every year over 100 million guest nights are spent in a Holiday Inn. For the second year in a row, the brand has received a top award by J.D. Power and Associates for guest satisfaction.
To celebrate this anniversary, Holiday Inn is inviting consumers in the U.S., Canada, Mexico and China to share their ‘firsts’ on Twitter, Facebook and Weibo and we will be giving away up to 60 free nights each day over the month of August to celebrate the most memorable ‘firsts’. Holiday Inn also invites others from around the world to share their ‘Then and Now’ photos on Facebook and Weibo until the end of October. Several winning entries will be selected to win a week-long family vacation at the Holiday Inn hotel of their choice, anywhere in the world.
“The 60th Anniversary is a global celebration of firsts for Holiday Inn and we’re excited about sharing this innovative heritage with our guests. We have all experienced ‘firsts’ in our lives and will continue to do so, but most importantly we’ll never forget them. At Holiday Inn we’ve celebrated many firsts through the years. From the first hotel to let children stay and eat for free, to our 1 billion dollar global refresh. So we’re celebrating 60 years of firsts with those who mean the most to us - our guests - by inviting them to share their memorable firsts with us and giving them a chance to create some new memories with Holiday Inn,” says Verchele Wiggins, Vice President, Global Brand Management, Holiday Inn Family of Brands.
To mark the anniversary, Holiday Inn will also be the first international hotel brand to open its 60th hotel in Greater China on 1 August, Holiday Inn Changbaishan Resort.
 J.D Power and Associates Award is for “Highest in Guest Satisfaction amongst Midscale Full Service Hotel Chains”
 Free nights will be awarded as Priority Club Rewards points
IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group) [LON:IHG, NYSE:IHG (ADRs)] is a global organisation with nine hotel brands including InterContinental® Hotels & Resorts, Hotel Indigo®, Crowne Plaza® Hotels & Resorts, Holiday Inn® Hotels and Resorts, Holiday Inn Express®, Staybridge Suites®, Candlewood Suites®, as well as our two newest brands, EVENTM Hotels and HUALUXETM Hotels & Resorts. IHG also manages Priority Club® Rewards, the world's first and largest hotel loyalty programme with over 65 million members worldwide.
IHG franchises, leases, manages or owns over 4,500 hotels and more than 661,000 guest rooms in nearly 100 countries and territories. With more than 1,000 hotels in its development pipeline, IHG expects to recruit around 90,000 people into additional roles across its estate 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.
Visit www.ihg.com for hotel information and reservations and www.priorityclub.com for more on Priority Club Rewards. For our latest news, visit www.ihg.com/media, www.twitter.com/ihgplc, www.facebook.com/ihg or www.youtube.com/ihgplc.
+44 (0) 1895 512 112