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New Hilton hotels category aimed at millenials. Looks kinda goofy to me….

Starwood several years ago came up with Aloft Hotels, aimed at millenials with casual, colourful lobbies, snack stations, tons of solid and free Wi-Fi and more. They’re nice properties. I stayed at one in Orlando on Thursday night last week and loved the lobby area (great drinks at the bar and local art work) and the overall feel of the place.

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So that’s fine. Then today I read that Hilton is developing the “Tru by Hilton” brand, also aimed at millenials. Good idea, and I’m sure Aloft is flattered. But check out the photo I saw on a press release with words printed on the floor.

trubyhiltonReally? Wow? Ooh? Bam? What is this, a 1967 Batman Episode? Biff! Pow! Wham! Like I say, I get the idea. But this looks like a bad cartoon, not a chic hotel. I’m sure the actual properties won’t look like this. I mean, I think I’m sure….

It’s a good idea to give millenials their own brand of hotel. But this particular rendering is, in my opinion, awful. Probably condescending, too. I mean, millenials are young and all. But from what I’ve read they like nice things as much as the rest of us, and probably want to be treated as adults, not talked down to with garish design features.

Biff, Bam, Wow to you, too.

WESTJET HEADS EAST

Interesting news in the airline biz in Canada today. WestJet announced it’s beefing up service in Toronto, adding flights to Nashville and Los Angeles. They already had announced flights between Toronto and Boston for March of this year.

WestJet is adding direct flights from Toronto to Nashville, starting June 15.

WestJet is adding direct flights from Toronto to Nashville, starting June 15.

WestJet today also announced three flights a week from Vancouver to San Diego, as well as more flights from Vancouver to Hawaii.

Toronto, Ottawa and Halifax will get more flights to Orlando and other Florida/sun destinations.

What I didn’t see in the first press release I saw, but what I spotted later, is that the extra flights for Toronto and the East Coast and for Vancouver are coming at the expense of flights in Calgary and Edmonton. It seems the downward spiral of oil prices means a lot less business travel to Alberta these days, so there’s excess capacity that they’re shifting East and West.

Tough call for Calgary-based WestJet, I’m sure, but seemingly a smart one. The Globe and Mail reports they dropped six flights from Calgary and five from Edmonton.

“We are adjusting capacity to where there is more robust demand,” Bob Cummings, WestJet’s commercial executive vice-president, said in an interview with the Globe. “The responsible thing for us to do now is to shift some capacity, at least temporarily.”

Cummings said the drop in Alberta traffic has been quite pronounced since November but didn’t offer specific numbers to the Globe.

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