ROCKVILLE, MD— Choice Hotels International, Inc. today unveiled the new Comfort Rise & Shine prototype as the next milestone for its flagship, upper midscale brand. The prototype celebrates the successes of the iconic brand as Comfort marks its 40th anniversary this year, and positions the brand for continued performance and system growth. The first new construction Rise & Shine prototype hotels are expected to open in 2023.
“At Choice, we’re always building, innovating and evolving, with guest satisfaction and owner return at the forefront of what we do,” said Pat Pacious, president and chief executive officer, Choice Hotels. “After finishing Comfort’s multi-year, $2.5 billion transformative journey, which resulted in upgraded guest rooms and public spaces, as well as a new logo and signage, the ongoing success of the brand is proof positive that we invest for the long term. Over the last 40 years, our strong franchisee collaboration and guest loyalty has built one of the industry’s leading brands in the upper midscale segment — a brand that has time and again shown its strength and resiliency through dynamic economic climates. Now that the Comfort refresh is complete, we are introducing the next milestone for our flagship brand: an exciting, new prototype that is designed to maximize return on investment.”
The new Comfort Rise & Shine prototype builds on the features that have made the brand a long-time favorite of developers in the upper midscale segment including:
- An efficient footprint: With reduced square footage, the Rise & Shine prototype delivers elevated fit and finish while maintaining Comfort’s efficient, cost-effective operating advantage.
- Innovative functionality: From a welcoming outdoor porch to an innovative new flex room that easily transforms from additional breakfast space to meeting and event space, the new prototype offers versatile spaces that can create additional revenue opportunities.
- Flexible and fresh design: Backed by extensive consumer research and developer feedback, the Rise & Shine design package comes in three color schemes, allowing developers to customize their choice to fit the needs of their local market, all while retaining the warm and welcoming personality for which Comfort is known. Developers can choose among the following:
- City – bold yet approachable with rich wood tones and an energized color palette.
- Sea – calm and soothing with muted colors and light wood tones.
- Sun – vibrant and cheerful with a relaxed yet optimistic feel.
“Upper midscale and midscale are Choice Hotels’ sweet spots, and no one knows these segments better than we do,” said David Pepper, chief development officer, Choice Hotels. “More than ever, developers and guests are gravitating towards established brands they know and trust — brands like Comfort. Whether looking to build new construction or convert existing businesses, the Comfort Rise & Shine prototype was flexibly designed to accommodate a broad spectrum of investment opportunities coupled with access to Choice’s industry-leading resources and technology. As owners look to build for tomorrow, they will be well served by building Comfort.”
The new prototype was designed in response to evolving guest needs with tailored spaces for travelers to relax, work, sleep and get ready for their day. New and existing elements of the design combine to maintain connective threads to the best of the current offering, while adapting to meet the changing needs of today’s traveler. Some of these updates include:
- Outdoor patios anchored by an indoor/outdoor fireplace, designed to give guests a warm welcome and make them feel at home.
- Open, airy and active public spaces with high ceilings and floor-to-ceiling windows to maximize natural lighting.
- A multi-purpose flex room that seamlessly converts to serve a variety of uses.
- Guestrooms featuring upgraded fixtures and furniture, including semi-open closets and new “on the go” stations at the door.
- Functional yet uplifting lighting throughout the prototype including the front desk welcome wall, public space millwork shelving, exclusive up-lighting on the guest room headboard wall and media panel and on the prototype exterior.
“As the name ‘Rise & Shine’ suggests, light is integral to the new design, inspired in part by our refreshed brand identity and new signage serving as a beacon for the brand,” said Megan Brumagim, vice president, brand management, design and compliance, Choice Hotels. “The prototype combines the features, design and amenities that guests want, with the efficiency, functionality and flexibility that developers expect. It offers spaces that can transform from day to night and serve a broad range of guest stays, whether business or leisure. The new prototype reinforces the brand’s strong value proposition with guests and owners by blending form and function to help optimize the guest experience and developers’ investment.”
Whether hosting a family on a road trip or a business traveler with an important client meeting, Comfort guests will continue to enjoy the spacious guestrooms, complimentary hot breakfast, free Wi-Fi and 100% smoke-free facilities that they expect from the brand.
Comfort has more than 1,600 hotels coast to coast in the U.S. and a pipeline of nearly 300 properties, about 80% of which are new construction. Choice Hotels listened closely to guests and owners when developing the new Comfort Rise & Shine prototype, and it has already received enthusiastic reviews from existing Comfort franchisees, who are eager to invest in the future of Choice Hotels’ flagship brand.
“It’s not every day you can say that you directly influenced a brand’s new product, but the Comfort prototype is a great example of how Choice Hotels’ collaboration with owners and developers ensures a win for everyone,” said Azim Saju, chief executive officer and president, HDG Hotels, and owner of 10 Choice-branded hotels. “I’m always looking for ways to optimize returns from my investments. I know Choice is too. I’m proud to have been a part of an incredible project that will be a game changer in the market for current and prospective owners as well as our guests.”