You Always Have a Choice
|Traded as||NYSE: CHH
Russell 1000 Component
|Headquarters||Rockville, Maryland, U.S.|
Number of locations
|Pat Pacious, President, & CEO, Stewart W. Bainum Jr., Chairman, Robert McDowell, CCO|
Cambria Hotel & Suites
Suburban Extended Stay Hotel
Ascend Hotel Collection
|Revenue||US$924.6 million (2016)|
|US$139.4 million (2016)|
Number of employees
|1,300 employed in headquarters|
Choice Hotels International, Inc. is a hospitality holding corporation based in Rockville, Maryland, in the United States. The company owns the hotel and motel brands Comfort Inn, Comfort Suites, Quality Inn, Sleep Inn, Clarion, Cambria Hotel & Suites, Mainstay Suites, Suburban Extended Stay, Econo Lodge, Rodeway Inn, and Ascend Hotel Collection. The company franchises 6,379 properties worldwide. There were 505,278 rooms, with approximately $45.80 in revenue per room, totaling $758 million in revenue as of April 2016.
The company was started in 1939 as Quality Courts, a referral chain consisting of seven motel owners in the South. It published the names of all properties complying with its standards and referred guests to the member properties. In 1941, the group incorporated as Quality Courts United. Later, the motel chain operated under the name Quality Motels (1963-1971) and Quality Inns International (since 1972). Quality Courts United accepted franchise hotels without strict norms or guidelines from the company. This is different from Holiday Inn which from its beginning implemented numerous mandatory standards and guidelines (e.g., room size and amenities) at each of its locations. Also, Quality Inn accepted franchisees with existing hotels.
During its early years, Quality Courts' operations were entirely in areas of the United States east of the Mississippi River and portions of Canada. From 1946 to 1964, Quality had a marketing partnership with Best Western, whose properties were located mostly west of the Mississippi River, and thus not in direct competition with Quality. It was abandoned in 1964 as Best Western expanded into the eastern U.S. with its Best Eastern operation (which was replaced by a nationwide Best Western operation in 1967). Quality Courts began its efforts toward national coverage in 1966 when it opened a motel in St. Louis, Missouri and two in Texas in Houston and Arlington.
The company became Quality International as the company switched to franchising in 1972. A few years later, with the franchising well on its way, about 300 hotels were independently owned and only about 38 were still company-owned.
In 1982, Quality Inns began segmentation by introducing Comfort Inns and Quality Royale. Comfort Inn competes with chains such as AmericInn Hotels, Baymont Inn & Suites, and Fairfield Inn by Marriott; Quality Royale was meant to compete with upper mid-priced chains like Red Lion Hotels and Four Points by Sheraton. Quality Royale was converted to Clarion Hotels in 1987. It represented a line of full-service hotels that offer travelers a variety of hotel styles and locations, from city centers to airports and resorts. Clarion provides a full spectrum of services, including full-service restaurants, lounges, room service, and banquet and conference centers. Clarion's boutique line, Clarion Collection (now Ascend Collection), is an extension of the brand. Ascend Collection is designed for high-end boutique and historic hotels that have an established local identity.
Two all-suite divisions, Comfort Suites and Quality Suites, were introduced as the first mid-market, all-suite chains. The original Quality Inn brand competes with Holiday Inn, Best Western, and Ramada. Many former Holiday Inns were refranchised as Quality Inns during the 1990s and 2000s. Conversely, Quality eliminated more than half of its original locations.
In 1989, the company introduced McSleep, an economy brand utilizing a consistent interior corridor design prototype and all-new construction, designed by Rob Spurr. The name was soon changed to Sleep Inn after litigation from McDonald's. Sleep Inn and Suites are low to mid-priced. Since then, 320 locations have opened. All offer a "Morning Medley" deluxe continental breakfast, swimming pools at most locations, free local calls, and a consistent exterior/interior design. The brand received its first major facelift in history with its "Brand Refresh", a modernization of all properties by 2012 with new boutique-inspired guest rooms and public spaces.
In 1990, Quality International changed its name to Choice Hotels International. The company bought three economy-oriented chains, Friendship Inns, Rodeway Inn, and Econo Lodge during the early 1990s. Friendship Inns, founded in 1961 in Salt Lake City, Utah, was later absorbed into the Rodeway and Econo Lodge chains.
In 1997, the company introduced the extended-stay Mainstay Suites brand and the Guest Privileges frequent guest loyalty program, the name of which was later changed to Choice Privileges. Mainstay Suites was branded as mid-priced extended stay hotels, franchised by Choice Hotels International.
In 2008, the company introduced the Ascend Collection (formerly Clarion Collection), an elite, upscale membership collection of historic boutique and unique hotels.
In 2010, CEO Steve Joyce was featured on an episode of Undercover Boss, a television program on CBS. He pretended to be an intern doing entry-level jobs like working the front desk, housekeeping, and maintenance work such as unclogging toilets.
In December 2017, Choice Hotels International announced that it has reached a definitive agreement to acquire the brand and franchise business of WoodSpring Suites from WoodSpring Hotels Holdings LLC, a portfolio company of Lindsay Goldberg, for approximately $231 million. In February 2018 Choice Hotels international completed its acquisition of the brand and franchise business of WoodSpring Suites, an extended-stay lodging brand, from WoodSpring Hotels LLC.
In October 2010, officials in Maryland and Montgomery County announced that Choice Hotels International would move its headquarters from suburban Silver Spring to Rockville, 13 miles northwest of its current location in 2013. Choice Hotels' new headquarters is now located in Rockville Town Center.
In August 2011, Choice Hotels broke ground on its 197,866 square feet (18,382.4 m2) corporate headquarters in Rockville. The company finalized its transition into the new building in June 2013.
The Ascend Hotel Collection joined with Bluegreen Vacations, an international timeshare company, in 2013, making Bluegreen the "Official Vacation Ownership Provider for Choice Hotels." 21 Bluegreen Resorts became members of the Ascend Hotel Collection, and all Bluegreen Vacations owners gained Gold Elite status in the Choice Privileges program along with the ability to convert ownership points to Choice Privileges points.
In 2016, Choice Hotels partnered with Future Energy Solutions, a green technology provider from Florida. The upgrades will include exchanging exterior lighting fixtures for energy efficient models for up to 6,400 hotels globally.
Choice Hotels includes the brands:
The loyalty program is Choice Privileges, formerly Guest Privileges.