5 things to know: 14 February 2018
 
5 things to know: 14 February 2018
14 FEBRUARY 2018 10:32 AM

From the desks of the Hotel News Now editorial staff:

  • MGM Resorts opens $3.4-billion MGM Cotai
  • Florida bill would let trafficking victims sue businesses ‘turning blind eye’
  • How 2017 hurricanes might affect Puerto Rican hotels
  • Lone Star sells last Amaris Hospitality hotels to LRC Group
  • Inflation concerns rise as US consumer prices increase

MGM Resorts opens $3.4-billion MGM Cotai: After years of development, MGM Resorts International has opened the 1,400-room MGM Cotai, its second property in Macau, China, Bloomberg reports. The $3.4-billion resort and casino has opened in time for the Chinese New Year holiday.

Many other resort and casino owners and operators have targeted Macau in recent years, the article states, and the Chinese government is considering a plan to allow gambling on the island of Hainan.

“We live in a world with many business distractions. Any business needs to have the resilience and capacity,” said Grant Bowie, CEO of MGM China Holdings Ltd., in an interview with Bloomberg TV. The Macau market can “overcome any of these challenges that present themselves.”


Florida bill would let trafficking victims sue businesses ‘turning blind eye’: The Florida legislature is reviewing a bill that would allow victims of human trafficking to sue their traffickers and businesses that turned a blind eye to the crimes, including hotels and motels, the Miami Herald reports.

While the bill has passed through three committees without any opposition, the article states the hotel industry has been working against it. The Florida House version of the bill includes an amendment that would exempt hotels and motels from being sued, giving them an “affirmative defense” from a lawsuit under the proposal if employees are trained on protocol for recognizing signs of trafficking and reporting it.

Texas and Pennsylvania have similar laws in place.


How 2017 hurricanes might affect Puerto Rican hotels: A review of how hotel markets in Florida and Texas performed following 2017 hurricanes can provide some insight into how hotels in Puerto Rico might be affected in the aftermath of the storms, writes CBRE’s Aaron Carone and Jamie Lane.

“After this initial bump, the disaster markets tend to take several years to fully recover to pre-storm levels due to supply constraints, loss of convention and group bookings and stigma,” the pair writes. “Looking at the market data from catastrophic hurricanes—Hurricane Ivan in Grand Cayman; Hurricane Hugo in Charleston, South Carolina; Hurricane Andrew in Miami; and Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans—it appears that demand took between two and eight years to reach pre-hurricane levels. The outlier was Hugo, which did not follow this pattern.”


Lone Star sells last Amaris Hospitality hotels to LRC Group: Texas-based Private equity fund Lone Star has sold the remaining 25 hotels it had in its Amaris Hospitality portfolio to the LRC Group for €676 million ($836.5 million), Hospitality Ireland reports. The sale ends Lone Star’s exploration of the Irish and United Kingdom’s hotel markets after it previously sold off its Jurys Inn chain to Pandox in 2017.

The acquisition by LRC Group, a fund created by Israeli investor Yehuda Barashi and based in Cyprus, marks the company’s introduction to the Irish and U.K. hotel markets.


Inflation concerns rise as U.S. consumer prices increase: U.S. consumer prices rose 0.5% in January and core prices grew 0.3%, coming in higher than economists predicted, The Wall Street Journal reports. Consumer prices increased 2.1% and core prices grew 1.8% year to date January, again higher than the projected 1.9% and 1.7%, respectively.

The reported increases show a growing intensity in overall inflationary pressures, the article states.

“Given the recent roller-coaster ride in equities was sparked in good part by inflation fears accelerating rate hikes, the latest inflation data will be seen as increasingly important and telling, to date,” Lindsey Piegza, chief economist at Stifel Economics, said in a note to clients ahead of the CPI release, according to The Journal.


Compiled by Bryan Wroten. 

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