IHG Hotels and Resorts celebrates a milestone of 60 years of its brands in Australia this week.
A series of celebratory events are planned at its properties throughout August and throughout the rest of the year and IHG will also offer a social media series with video messages from colleagues past and present to remember the people who have made the company what it is today.
“I’m so proud to celebrate an incredible milestone for a company that I love so much and that holds such a special place in the hearts of the many people who have been part of the journey over these 60 incredible years,” said the director. General of IHG. for Japan, Australasia and the Pacific, Leanne Harwood.
“It is truly a wonderful time of celebration, reflection and excitement for the future as we enter our ‘Diamond Era’ for IHG.”
“I am very grateful to have the opportunity to lead IHG here in this market today, but there are so many who have been part of our deep heritage and continued our pioneering spirit to lead the way before me. This anniversary is an opportunity for us to give back and say thank you.Thank you to our colleagues, thank you to the owners, thank you to our former leaders and thank you to our loyal guests, who have accompanied us on this exciting journey.
Industry-leading body, the Accommodation Association, congratulated IHG for reaching this important milestone.
“IHG and its portfolio of well-known brands have been integral to the growth of the accommodation industry and the reputation of our employees who go above and beyond to deliver incredible experiences,” said Accommodation Association CEO Richard Munro.
“Organizationally, the Accommodation Association also benefits from the leadership of Leanne Harwood, IHG Hotels and Resorts Senior Managing Director for Japan, Australasia and the Pacific, as President. It is an absolute pleasure to recognize and congratulate everyone who has played a role in the growth of IHG over the past 60 years in Australia.
IHG through the decades
On August 14, 1962, the legendary InterContinental Southern Cross Hotel Melbourne opened its doors, becoming the country’s first international hotel. Introduced by American airline Pan Am, founder of the InterContinental brand, the luxurious American-style hotel has attracted celebrities, royalty and rockstars from Frank Sinatra to Princess Diana and the Beatles.
“We couldn’t wish for a more iconic property to mark the launch of our long and impressive history in Australia and, although the Southern Cross Hotel is no longer with us, its legacy lives on in the iconic properties we continue to work with. ‘open. our owners today and we are very honored to celebrate this 60-year milestone with our colleagues, owners and guests,” said Harwood.
In the decades that followed, the Holiday Inn and Crowne Plaza brands entered the Australian market and established properties in destinations such as Cairns, Cable Beach, Hamilton Island, Newcastle, Melbourne and Sydney.
Bass Hotels and Resorts acquired the Holiday Inn and InterContinental brands in the 1980s and 1990s respectively, leading to rapid growth of these brands in Australia. In 2000, Bass acquired Southern Pacific Hotels Corporation (SPHC), transitioning its Parkroyal and Centra brands, before divesting its hotel business, known as Six Continents. In 2003, the company was renamed InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG), and it eventually became IHG Hotels and Resorts in 2021.
In what the company calls its Diamond Age, IHG is experiencing its greatest period of organic growth. It now has 68 hotels open and signed in Australia and 95 across the Australasia and Pacific region. These properties span eight brands and three Collections: InterContinental, Kimpton, Vignette Collection and Hotel Indigo in the Luxury and Lifestyle portfolio; voco and Crowne Plaza in the Premium portfolio; and Holiday Inn and Holiday Inn Express in the Essentials portfolio.