27 April 2015
Meet the Money® 2015 Spotlight
The Hotel Law Blog is highlighting some of our Meet the Money® 2015 sponsors as the national hotel finance and investment conference approaches. In the Q&A below, Rob Palleschi, Global Head, Full Service Brands of Hilton Worldwide, discusses how he got started in the hospitality industry, and what the global brand is expecting in 2015.
You can hear from Rob and 100 other speakers at Meet the Money® 2015, coming up May 4-6 in Los Angeles. The window of opportunity for hotel deals and development is wide open, and the 25th year of our conference will help you make the right choices and meet the right people to add value to your deals in 2015 and beyond. Register now at www.MeetTheMoney.com.
Jim Butler: Tell us a little bit about yourself. How did you get into the hospitality business? What are responsibilities at Hilton now?
Rob Palleschi: I started working in the hotel business in high school, at the front desk and as a night auditor. Later, I went to Johnson & Wales University for Hotel/Restaurant Management…and here I am. I’ve been in the hospitality industry for over 25 years, and I currently oversee all aspects of Hilton Worldwide’s flagship brands and a portfolio of over 550 hotels through the world. I’ve also overseen the DoubleTree brand in the past, strategizing development, implementation, and enforcement of brand standards.
Jim: Talk about some of Hilton’s current metrics – numbers of hotels, brands, pipeline both domestically and internationally. How many hotels are managed by Hilton and how many franchised?
Rob: Right now, Hilton has 713,000 rooms in 4,316 hotels worldwide, with 502,000 of those rooms franchised and 211,000 managed. About 75% of those rooms are in the United States.
Our current pipeline is the largest in the industry—240,000 rooms and 1,432 hotels. We have 126,000 rooms under construction, as well as 130,000 franchised and 110,000 managed rooms coming online. A little more than half of our current pipeline is international—134,000 rooms are outside the U.S.
Jim: What initiatives or campaigns does Hilton have now? Anything to assist developers and owners?
Rob: We’re doing some fee ramp-ups for the Home 2 Suites, Embassy Suites, Canopy, and Curio brands. We’re also targeting growth in some strategic markets–for example, downtown Los Angeles, Seattle, Vancouver and Montreal. Hilton is also focused on our development of resorts in the Caribbean, Ski Resorts, and some additional destination markets.
Jim: Tell us about your newer brands and how they are coming.
Rob: Both Hilton’s Curio and Canopy are doing very well. We have already opened 5 Curio properties, and have over 20 signed deals in the USA & Europe in various stages of development. Our newest brand, Canopy, will open its first property later this year, also boasting over 20 new deals.
This is Jim Butler, author of www.HotelLawBlog.com and hotel lawyer, signing off. We’ve done more than $87 billion of hotel transactions and have developed innovative solutions to unlock value from hotels. Who’s your hotel lawyer?
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Jim Butler is a founding partner of JMBM, and Chairman of its Global Hospitality Group® and Chinese Investment Group™. Jim is one of the top hospitality attorneys in the world. GOOGLE “hotel lawyer” and you will see why. Jim and his team are more than “just” great hotel lawyers. They are also hospitality consultants and business advisors. They are deal makers. They can help find the right operator or capital provider. They know who to call and how to reach them.