; RockStar Hotels: You Don’t Want To Trash These Rooms

RockStar Hotels: You Don’t Want To Trash These Rooms

TravelMarket - by Richard D’Ambrosio / March 13, 2017

But that isn’t what RockStar Hotels is all about. This collection of 40 high-end boutique properties (in seven countries) includes classic smaller properties like the Armani in Milan, the 16th-century Palazzo Barbarigo on the Grand Canal in Venice, and the Hotel Alfonso XIII in Seville.

With plans to expand this year into the United Kingdom, Germany and Asia, RockStar is raising its profile in 2017, with plans to start marketing to travel agents and providing commissionable rates.

“There is a style that is intangible, like the Hotel San Pietro, in Amalfi. We’re looking for that effect, something special, unique, with a history behind it. I want to share these stories with our guests,” president and CEO Robert Santucci told Travel Market Report.

Or take the Hotel Palazzo Manfredi, in Rome. It was built hundreds of years ago. Gladiators changed there. We tell that story. We’re hoping the guest can live in that time when they stay with us, and wonder ‘if these walls could talk.’ ”

Santucci believes agents should book his properties when a client is “looking for an experience, that added wow factor, instead of the ho-hum every day trip.” For example, his Paris hotels will help set up appointments with local fashion designers.

So far, the group is popular with 23-35 year olds, and then again with empty nesters, “47-57 year olds who want to get away, and get to know each other again,” Santucci said.

Every property in the portfolio is carefully curated; the company does formal site inspections every 90 days to get to know the owners, the GM, the director of sales. “You can rest assured this is a property inspected by a key executive in our company.”

The U.S.-based company has an in-house team of experts who identify and visit hotels in this segment, looking not only for physical features that fit the brand, but top service.

Agent marketing to launch this yearSantucci said the chain doesn’t offer agent commissions currently, but is planning to. “We’re still working out our agent marketing. I think commissions will come in around 6%, and we’ll offer added benefits agencies can offer to their clients,” he said.

“We have in our marketing plan to start educating the travel agent community in the latter half of this year, to start attending industry trade shows, etc.”

Agent clients might begin to hear more about RockStar later this month, when an online marketing campaign begins. “You will find us in a very heavy digital rotation,” Santucci said.

Source: Travel Market Report - http://www.travelmarketreport.com/articles/RockStar-Hotels-You-Dont-Want-To-Trash-These-Rooms