Small Luxury Hotels of the World (SLH) has reported strong growth during 2011, with reservations increasing by 23% to £62.9m.
The sales and marketing consortium, now in its 21st year, also experienced a 71% increase in bookings on its website last year, with online bookings now accounting for 20% of business. Membership of The Club, SLH's guest loyalty programme, is up 144% to 140,000 members.
Paul Kerr, chief executive of SLH, said he was proud to report such positive trading figures during a period of global economic crisis. "Over the past 20 years, SLH has been transformed from a club of hotels to a club of customers - customers who are loyal to the brand," he said.
"The luxury hotel market has been fairly resilient in the uncertain times that we have all experienced over the years, and as with other high-end brands we are being helped by strengthening emerging markets around the globe as well as established ones. We do, however, need to be prepared as markets shift further in order to respond to the ever-changing patterns of customer behaviour."
SLH currently represents 523 hotels in over 70 countries. Its top five customer source markets in 2011 were the USA, UK, Germany, Australia and Canada, with Brazil and Singapore forming the strongest-growing areas. Among the new hotels joining the brand, SLH has seen buoyant growth in China, Latin America and Scandinavia over the past 12 months. Destinations most searched for on slh.com are Italy and France.
By Janet Harmer
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