Loews Hotels brings a little Italy to its car service amenity

NEW YORK—Thanks to a new partnership with the Fiat automobile brand, five participating Loews Hotels are offering guests an opportunity to travel in style, safety and comfort, according to the hotel brand. A first-of-its-kind collaboration for the New York-based hotel group and the Italian automaker, the program provides chauffeured service to guests in 2014 Fiat 500L vehicles. Five Loews hotels across North America began offering this service in March.

The Loews Madison Hotel in Washington, DC, Loews Regency Hotel in New York City, Loews Hollywood Hotel, Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel and Loews Miami Beach Hotel now provide chauffeur-driven Fiat 500L service. Meanwhile, Loews Miami Beach, Loews Hollywood and Loews Santa Monica Beach have gone one step further, offering two complimentary Fiat loaner vehicles—the Fiat 500L and either the Fiat Cabrio or the all-electric Fiat 500e (depending on location)—for guests to drive themselves for the day during their stay (up to three hours a day). 

“Fiat is an iconic automotive brand so whether guests are taking advantage of the chauffeur program or experiencing the guest-drive opportunity, we know that they will literally get to where they need to go in style and comfort—and also safely,” said Elizabeth Harlow, SVP marketing, Loews Hotels & Resorts.

Expanding on the style and efficiency that has made the Fiat 500 a popular choice for more than 55 years, according to the automaker, the all-new 2014 Fiat 500L expands the original Fiat Cinquecento’s appeal. This vehicle features 42% extra interior space with seating for five, a 160-horsepower 1.4-liter MultiAir Turbo engine and two fuel-saving, six-speed transmission offerings, all wrapped in a contemporary design.

Whether the hotel’s business travelers are heading to a meeting or leisure travelers are cruising toward a getaway, the new four-door Fiat 500L offers a memorable experience, according to Loews. Described by the automaker as “fun, flirty, smart and stylish,” the 2014 edition also offers a fuel economy of 33 miles per gallon (mpg) on the highway and 25 mpg in the city. The Fiat 500L is an ideal travel accessory for Loews guests, according to Harlow.

“The new Fiat 500L helps bring more interior space, more doors, more passengers,” said Harlow. “It has expansive views with minimal obstructions of the outside world and clever technology. The Fiat 500L is sophisticated, fun and defined by exceptional contemporary Italian design.”

After launching the chauffeur-driven and complimentary loaner vehicles, Loews Hotels has received a positive response from guests, whether already familiar with the auto brand or new to this city car. “The response has been tremendous since the program launched,” said Harlow. “More than 3,000 of our guests have utilized the ‘Ride with Fiat’ program.” 

Furthermore, Fiat offers eco-friendly features for the all-electric Fiat 500e without sacrificing performance and design, according to the automaker. “The Fiat 500e is 100% battery powered and yields zero tailpipe emissions without compromising style,” said Harlow. “It has Italian styling, instant torque, strong and smooth acceleration and an aerodynamic bodywork.”

Fiat’s partnership with the luxury hotel brand is the company’s first endeavor with the hospitality industry. According to Casey Hurbis, head of communications, Fiat Brand North America, the partnership reinforces the style, fun and individualism that characterize both the Fiat and Loews Hotels brands as both continue to evolve and reach out to a new demographic and lifestyle. 

Harlow added, “We identified automotive partners whom we felt were a good fit for our brand. It was many months in the making but, ultimately, we were able to solidify the partnership and launch the program. We share many of the same values and positioning.”   

Guests of Loews Hotels can reserve a date and time to drive the vehicles via the Fiat Ambassador on property or through the hotel’s newly launched website, www.ridewithfiat.com. “Loews has never done anything like this before,” said Harlow. “Whether as a perk for business or an upgrade for pleasure, the Fiat 500L service is an amenity that speaks to our guests in a language they can appreciate and a style they deserve.”

The recent partnership fulfills an increasing guest demand at the participating Loews Hotels, especially where public transportation is limited, according to the hotel brand. When traveling to California, guests of Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel have requested transportation to the nearby 3rd Street Promenade and Venice Beach Boardwalk, while visitors of the Loews Hollywood Hotel are looking to explore Rodeo Drive, Melrose Avenue, Universal City, Warner Bros. and Robertson Drive.  

Plans to expand the Fiat partnership to other hotels have not been determined yet.