Vignette Collection: New IHG Luxury & Lifestyle Brand

InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG), has just launched Vignette Collection, its newest hotel brand.
Basics of the new IHG Vignette collection

IHG's luxury portfolio has been a weak area in the past. This is an area that IHG has made improvements to. IHG acquired Kimpton, Regent and Six Senses while expanding its luxury portfolio with existing brands organically. IHG also has a marketing partnership to Mr. & Mrs. Smith that opens up luxury properties all over the globe.

IHG has launched a new brand for luxury and lifestyle. Independent luxury hotels will be able to join IHG without any conversion costs. This will allow them to keep their unique identity while also benefiting from IHG's distribution power, loyalty program, and distribution network. It will follow the same model as Hyatt Unbound Collection or Hilton Curio Collection. IHG hopes to expand this brand to more than 100 properties worldwide over the next decade.

These are the first two hotels that will join IHGs Vignette Collection:

Brisbane's Fortitude Valley 5-star Hotel X

Pattaya Aquatique, located in Pattayas Aquatique District

Here's how Keith Barr (CEO of IHGs) describes the new brand.

IHG's new Vignette Collection offers a compelling way for independent hotels to join our brand family. It combines each property's unique identity with the strength of our global scale. Each property will stand out as an individual, as our first hotels in Australia or Thailand demonstrate, and they will all be supported by IHGs reputation for quality. In recent years, we have been strategic in the improvements to our Luxury & Lifestyle portfolio. With more than 400 hotels and 100,000 room it is the second largest industry portfolio. With the rapid expansion of Kimpton, Hotel Indigo and the acquisitions of Six Senses, Regent, we have built on the legacy and global success that our InterContinental brand has enjoyed. In 10 years, we expect to attract over 100 Vignette Collection hotels. The brand will also be key in achieving our industry-leading net room growth.

IHG published a video about the new brand. Why do all brand videos have to be basically the same? ()

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IHG's new brand is a good fit.

In recent years, major hotel chains have been more focused on converting independent hotels than signing new contracts. Independent hotel collections make sense for existing hotels that want to join a brand. This is because hotels are able to keep their own design and not have to follow a template.

Independent hotels can now enjoy the benefits of a global hotel group's distribution power and loyalty program without having to pay a lot upfront.

IHG's Voco brand was launched a few years ago. It is an independent hotel group concept but it has a lower end. This brand is clearly aimed at a higher end. In Marriott terms, you can refer to it as Tribute Portfolio vs. Luxury Collection.

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I'm curious to see how quickly this brand grows for IHG. Given that almost all major hotel groups now have their own luxury collections,

IHG doesn't have as loyal a following as other major hotel chains.

Perhaps hotels will prefer that IHG's loyalty program benefits for hotels are more affordable and simpler to receive; IHG doesn't offer elite members free breakfast or a guarantee of an upgrade, nor a late check-out. I wonder if these hotels could participate in IHG Rewards Club's InterContinental Ambassador program.

Bottom line

Vignette Collection is a new luxury and lifestyle independent hotel group that IHG has launched. Although this segment has been very popular among the major international hotel chains in recent years it is one that IHG has not really entered.

Voco is an IHG concept, though it's lower-end. Kimpton is another IHG option, which allows hotels to have their own unique charms, while still being consistent. The new brand will let any independent luxury hotel join IHG without having to spend too much money on conversion.

What do you think of IHG's Vignette Collection brand name?