Nearly every segment of the travel industry seems to have a strategy for attracting LGBT travelers. Hoteliers, however, have more options than many since their diversity of destinations — not to mention broad marketing efforts and gay-friendly employment policies — provide lots of opportunities to showcase their friendliness in creative ways.
Many hoteliers tout their support for equal rights. InterContinental Hotels Group, for example, received a perfect score of 100 percent on the Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s 2016 Corporate Equality Index, a national benchmarking survey and report on corporate policies and practices related to LGBT workplace equality.
“At IHG, we are delighted to be honored for our inclusive policies and recognized as a champion of diversity,” said Elie Maalouf, CEO, The Americas, IHG. “Our top marks underscore our commitment to promote a culture of inclusion for our guests and employees and encourage us to continually strive to be a supportive force within the communities in which we operate.”
The company’s recently acquired Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants division, meanwhile, enjoys long-standing, high-profile status as a gay-friendly place to work and stay and earned the 100 percent score for several years before the acquisition.
Last fall, W Hotels partnered with the Human Rights Campaign, a leading LGBT rights organization, and the award-winning singer and actress Jennifer Hudson to unveil the Turn It Up For Change campaign to raise money and awareness for gay rights, including marriage and workplace equality. The effort raised more than $100,000 as of press time, with fundraising events in Atlanta, Chicago and New York as well as more than 30 local events at various W Hotels around the United States.
Making it easy for travelers to explore a hotel company’s gay-friendliness online is another common tactic for attracting attention. Belmond recently unveiled a new microsite dedicated to the LGBT market and also appointed a new director of LGBT sales. Hilton Hotels & Resorts, Marriott International and Preferred Hotels & Resorts also operate LGBT microsites with special packages and travel information — including everything from event details to personal travel tips and even recipes — for LGBT road warriors.
Heathrow Airport built a “bespoke set of anti-drone systems” around its airfield. The system, created by U.K.-based firm Operational Solutions, detects and tracks drones in surrounding airspace. The “new and innovative” system can also locate drone pilots and show their location.
United Airlines’ environmentally friendly efforts lessen the impact on local U.S. communities.
New upgrades at Frankfurt Airport include renovations at the Sheraton Frankfurt Airport Hotel & Conference Center, as well as the addition of a new hotel, Frankfurt Airport Marriott. To make room for the new property, the Sheraton Frankfurt Airport Hotel was reduced to 779 guestrooms from its previous 1,008 guestrooms, allowing for 233 guestrooms at Frankfurt Airport Marriott. All Sheraton guestrooms are now refurbished.
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Waldorf Astoria Atlanta Buckhead is on the cusp of updating its spa concept and partners.
A historic U.K., hotel, The Grand Hotel Birmingham is expected to open this summer after extensive renovations. One of the city’s most iconic buildings, The Grand Hotel Birmingham was originally constructed in the 1870s.
oneworld is an alliance of 13 world-leading airlines committed to providing the highest level of service and connecting you to more than 1,100 destinations around the world.
With new stories surfacing daily about disorderly passengers being escorted off an aircraft or, worse, forcing the plane to make an emergency landing, countries recently passed legislation ensuring such passengers are punished to the fullest extent.