Why Omni and Loews Opted for Partnership Over a Merger

Omni Hotels & Resorts

Loews and Omni are finally linking up in a sales and marketing deal that could eventually extend to the meetings and events side of their similar businesses. Omni Hotels & Resorts

Skift Take: Loews and Omni’s closer working relationship is more about maintaining their respective independence rather than setting the stage for an eventual merger, or so company leaders say.

— Cameron Sperance

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Hospitality Companies Follow Pandemic Demand by Offering Villa Rentals

AvantStay

AvantStay’s expansion to Cabo San Lucas arrives as more hospitality competitors see opportunity in high-end vacation home rentals. AvantStay

Skift Take: AvantStay’s expansion to the villa rental market in Mexico is happening at a slower pace than bigger brands like Marriott, but it still signals a lot of future growth in the lodging sector won’t be tied to traditional hotels.

— Cameron Sperance

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What SoHo House Going Public Says About the Future of Luxury Travel

Ben Terrett  / Flickr

SoHo House is taking a second crack at taking its members-only social clubs (pictured: the SoHo House Istanbul) public on the stock exchange. Ben Terrett / Flickr

Skift Take: Even if luxury travel bounces back quickly, there may be a ceiling on how well an exclusive, members-only club like SoHo House will do during the pandemic recovery relative to traditional, luxury hotel competitors.

— Cameron Sperance

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The Aspirations of JetBlue to Be a Travel Tech Company

JetBlue

Image of planned Mint class studio seat for JetBlue’s planned transatlantic service. JetBlue Airways sees wants to add a business line: travel technology, said chief digital and technology officer Eash Sundaram. JetBlue

Skift Take: What’s the best strategy for a corporation? Some years, it’s trendy for consultants to advise companies to focus on their “core competency.” In other years, it’s all about diversifying. JetBlue’s effort to diversify into enterprise tech will be worth watching.

— Sean O’Neill

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Electric Aircraft Are Coming, Just Not as Soon As You Think

Jean-Marie Liot  / Eviation Aircraft

Eviation’s Alice aims to be one of the first electric planes certified by regulators. Jean-Marie Liot / Eviation Aircraft

Skift Take: Electric aircraft are an inevitable step for commercial aviation with the heightened focus on carbon emissions. Numerous companies are vying to develop this new technology but, with engines still in the works and a lengthy certification runway ahead, when is everyones’ guess.

— Edward Russell

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Japan Weighs Ban on Overseas Spectators for Tokyo Olympics

Reuters

The Tokyo Olympic Games are scheduled to begin in late July. The organizing committee is considering barring international spectators from attending the games due to the pandemic. Reuters

Skift Take: The Olympics games are set to begin in less than five months, but the spread of new coronavirus variants worldwide is worrying organizers. A ban would disappoint hundreds of thousands of expected spectators, but might be a good public health decision.

— Sean O’Neill

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