Launched in the French city of Lille, the new budget hotel includes large open public spaces, an ‘ibis kitchen’ F&B area, and a new room concept called ‘Sweet Room by ibis’.
“People no longer end up in economy hotels because they have to; now they stay at economy brands because they think about their options and make the smart choice,” said Frédéric Fontaine, senior vice president of global marketing for ibis.
“These brands have taken a stand: they are blazing new trails and enhancing lifestyles. And as the world is changing all around us, our role as leader is to stay in touch with the market and customers and to innovate while honouring our commitment on prices.”
The contemporary Sweet Room concept offers flat-screen LCD TVs, modular desks, new lighting and free Wi-Fi, along with a new ‘Sweet Bed’ concept. Accor added that “a lot of work went into the soundproofing” of the new rooms, ensuring guests have a peaceful stay.
The ibis kitchen concept will serve breakfast, before turning into a social space during the day and evening. Other features being trialled at the new ibis hotels include a wall of travellers’ tips, where guests can leave their recommendations for fellow travellers, and “high-tech laundrettes”.
Accor revamped its budget brands three years ago, with the launch of three different ibis products: ibis, ibis styles and ibis budget. Last year, 54% of all new Accor hotels opened worldwide were under the ibis brands, with an average of one new ibis opening every three days. Accor said ibis hotels now generate half of its pre-tax profits.
And the brand’s growth is especially strong in emerging markets; Asia Pacific and Latin America account for a combined 68% of all hotels in the ibis pipeline.