Wyndham newest affordable brand opens its first U.S. hotel


U.S. travelers have a new option when it comes to the rapidly growing extended-stay hotel market.

Wyndham’s newest brand, Echo Suites Extended Stay by Wyndham, officially opened its first hotel this week in Spartanburg, South Carolina. The 124-room hotel is the first property for the new extended-stay brand, which adds to a growing list of offerings from Wyndham and its competitors, such as Marriott International, Hilton and Hyatt.

There are a variety of reasons for the broader industry push into extended-stay brands, and Wyndham leaders seem particularly bullish on ongoing infrastructure projects in the U.S. as a driver for business at future Echo Suites hotels. Further, the company likes the durability of extended-stay hotel demand even in uncertain economic times.

“When you look at the extended-stay [segment’s] occupancy rate, it’s doing so much better than the rest of the industry right now,” Wyndham CEO Geoff Ballotti said in an interview with TPG this week.

A massive wave of coast-to-coast construction is expected to come from the $1.2 trillion Infrastructure and Job Acts of 2021 as well as the $280 billion spending package of 2022 for chip manufacturing plant building. Construction workers need a place to stay while they’re on the job, though.

Wyndham leaders anticipate the construction generated from the combined packages could bring a $3.3 billion opportunity for added room revenue to Wyndham franchisees.

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“There’s a lot of building that’s going on around the country,” Ballotti said. “We’re already seeing in so many markets that our hotels benefit.”

Echo Suites Spartanburg consists of a mix of single- and two-queen studio suites with kitchens; public spaces include a fitness center, lobby and 24/7 laundry. Because Echo Suites operates in the economy end of the extended-stay segment, guests shouldn’t expect a free breakfast — that’s what Wyndham’s higher-end Hawthorn Suites brand is for. Wyndham also has WaterWalk Extended Stay, a brand that operates as a hotel-residential hybrid with a mix of furnished and unfurnished units for longer stays.

During an Echo Suites stay, guests will find clean, furnished and affordable stays. Average rates will vary by market, but the Echo Suites Spartanburg was priced as low as $84 per night for stays this week. Complimentary housekeeping is offered every two weeks — extended-stay hotels typically see guests staying at least 10 nights — but guests can pay for more frequent cleanings.

Other offerings, from cookware to soap and shampoo for rooms, are also offered via the Wyndham mobile app ahead of arrival, Ballotti said.

Similar to what Wyndham’s competitors are anticipating with their respective extended-stay brands, Echo Suites is expected to grow quickly. The company already has deals in place for 270 Echo Suites hotels. Wyndham leaders expect 75 Echo Suites to either open or be under construction by the end of 2026, and the brand is expected to have 300 hotels open by 2032.

“When you look at the infrastructure bill and its impact in terms of where money is being allocated, it’s no surprise to see the states where it is being most allocated are the states that have the most executed and signed Echo Suites by Wyndham contracts,” Ballotti said.

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By Mahir

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