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HB ON THE SCENE: Lodging Conference Conveys Causes for Optimism

PHOENIX—The 19th annual Lodging Conference kicked off with leading industry executives weighing in on a number of topical issues, from the recently announced IPO of Hilton Worldwide to current fundamentals, as well as the increased availability of financing.

During the session, “A View From The Top,” Tom Corcoran, chairman, FelCor Lodging Trust, expressed optimism when asked if he saw any cause for concern with the economy, and more specifically. Hilton’s recent announcement. “I don’t think there are red flags at all. I don’t think as an industry any of us are smart enough to read the tea leaves. It’s a good economy, we’ve had great RevPAR growth; enjoy it,” he said.

David Kong, president/CEO, Best Western International, did note, however,  “Supply is growing at a pretty hefty pace and growth of occupancy and RevPAR have slowed down. It seems like we have already passed our peak. We have to be cautious.”

Meanwhile, Mike Patel, principal, NewcrestImage, noted, “Capital is coming back to the market. We’re in a much better position today to leverage the capital stacks. We should continue to leverage that and build on that momentum.”

Moderator Don Landry, owner of Top Ten Hospitality Advisors, added, “Hotel stocks are up 12% year to date.”


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