IHG opens first Holiday Inn Express hotels with new design

IHG Hotels & Resorts has revealed that more than 25 Holiday Inn Express properties showcasing Formula Blue 2.0, the next evolution of the brand’s design solution, have now opened across the U.S. and Canada.

IHG first released the Formula Blue design in 2014, bringing the now-familiar trademark elements of open check-in, enclosed breakfast bar and guestroom refreshment zone to hotel owners and millions of travelers. Formula Blue has been the most popular design initiative in the brand’s 30-year history, according to the company, and is now in more than 1,200 hotels in North America. Hotels with the Formula Blue design outperform the brand average in both guest experience and “likely to recommend” because of the brand’s focus on design elements that promote a productive stay, a good night’s sleep and a clean experience.

“Holiday Inn Express is our fastest growing brand because of our focus on investing in a design and brand experience in areas where it matters most to guests,” said Stephanie Atiase, VP, global brand head, Holiday Inn Express. “We’re focused on making design changes that, based on consumer insights, impact booking decisions and continue to offer great owner value.”

Guests will now experience these noticeable design changes with Formula Blue 2.0:

Public spaces with increased warmth and local distinction: The check-in area and great room now have architectural wood elements; and the perching area features regional artwork with a state-specific wall map graphic to provide guests with a sense of place.

Guestrooms with more usable space for travelers and cost savings for owners: A redesigned Smart Shelf in the entry reduces owner cost, while providing the same guest experience; the functional rack now combines the luggage bench and drawers to lower owner cost and provides more space for guests. This includes a redesigned wardrobe with separate ironing board/iron compartment.

Neil Patel, owner, Holiday Inn Express & Suites Valencia-Santa Clarita in California, said, “I have owned hotels for 14 years and partnered with IHG for much of that time. In fact, one of our first hotels when my dad and I started our company was an IHG property. My Holiday Inn Express has performed strongly as an investment and is popular for travelers coming through the Valencia-Santa Clarita market. Working with IHG to upgrade our property to the next iteration of the Formula Blue design was a great experience, and I love welcoming guests into our new and improved spaces. As a regional owner, I really appreciate the cost savings aspect that Formula Blue 2.0 delivered without sacrificing the quality provided to the owner.”

Keyur Patel, owner, Holiday Inn Express White Marsh in Maryland, said, “Like many of my fellow owners, my brother Ketul and I grew up in the hotel business and it’s still a family business for us today. We built our very first Holiday Inn Express in 1999, and our strategy has always been to build and operate quality hotels. My wife Heeral and I worked closely with the IHG team to incorporate the Formula Blue 2.0 design at the new White Marsh hotel and the results have been fantastic. Our favorite part is the public area which now has regionalized artwork done in a programmatic way. The entire design just feels better.”

Last year, Holiday Inn Express celebrated its 30th anniversary and has opened more than 3,000 hotels globally.