Fresh off their strategic partnership with MGM Resorts in Las Vegas to partner up with the 12 participating M Life hotel properties there, and also a deal to grow in Paris and the South of France, Hyatt has entered into a deal to invest in Playa Hotels and Resorts.
Hyatt will spend $100 million for a 20% ownership stake and $225 million for convertible preferred stock in Playa, a privately held hotel-investment company.
…Playa’s hotel portfolio will include 13 resorts totaling about 5,800 rooms across the Dominican Republic, Mexico and Jamaica. Playa will sign franchise agreements with Hyatt for six of the 13 resorts, which will operate under Hyatt brands after renovations are completed.
Under the agreement with Hyatt, Playa will have certain rights to operate Hyatt-branded all-inclusive resorts in five Latin American and Caribbean countries on an exclusive basis through 2018.
Hyatt noted the first two all-inclusive resorts, located in Mexico, will be introduced later this year. Four additional resorts in Jamaica, Mexico and the Dominican Republic are expected to be introduced in 2014 and 2015.
Hyatt has addressed its weakness in the Vegas market, made a small but valuable play for Europe, and now this deal fills their gap in the Caribbean market which has been another area of weakness.
Gold Passport members will soon have new all-inclusive resorts at which to earn and burn points.
I frequently argue that Hyatt Gold Passport is the most rewarding of the major hotel loyalty programs — for points earning and redemption, for reasonably-priced confirmed suite upgrades with points for all members, for Diamond confirmed suite upgrades, and also with the most generous top tier breakfast benefit.
But the weakness is in their coverage, they are roughly half the size of Starwood Preferred Guest and orders of magnitude smaller than Priority Club, Hilton, and Marriott. Nonetheless they’e been addressing these shortcomings quite well over the past six months indeed!