Blue Water Development and Real Hospitality Set to Open New Aloft Hotel in Ocean City, Maryland

USA, Ocean City, Maryland. May 21, 2019

Aloft Hotels, in partnership with East Coast hospitality specialist Blue Water Development and Real Hospitality, is pleased to announce the opening of its newest hotel for the next generation of travelers, Aloft Ocean City. Taking a design-driven, tech-forward approach to modern hospitality, this 120-room, pet-friendly hotel is located in the 45th Street Village on the bayside of Ocean City and is expected to officially open May 2, 2019.

Aloft Ocean City will be equipped with beautifully appointed common areas; a state-of-the-art fitness center; an indoor and outdoor pool, including a poolside bar and private balconies overlooking Isle of Wight Bay. It will also feature two bay-facing event spaces totaling 3,250 square-feet, ideal for both business functions and weddings, as well as a 380 square-foot space perfect for corporate meetings and other intimate gatherings. The hotel is one of the first examples of the refreshed design approach for Aloft Hotels globally; with modern features such as check-in pods, light and airy loft-like guest rooms, public spaces designed for live music events and the latest technology.

"As Blue Water's first new construction in Ocean City, it's been thrilling to watch the Aloft come alive and reflect our vibrant coastal atmosphere," said Todd Burbage, Blue Water co-owner. "The sleek design and energetic vibe can't be found anywhere else in Ocean City, so we can't wait for our guests to begin enjoying the Aloft lifestyle in this popular resort town."

To energize for a day at the beach, guests can grab on-the-go breakfast options from Re:fuel by Aloft℠, the 24/7 one-stop shop for snacks and bites, including Aloft's innovative new portable breakfast "pots". In the evenings, they can enjoy signature cocktails and a full American bar menu at the W XYZ® bar, accompanied by live music from the brand's Live at Aloft Hotels music program. After taking in one of Ocean City's 200+ restaurants, 10-mile beach, unique attractions and craft brewery scene, guests can unwind in rooms featuring plush platform beds, custom Aloft bath amenities by Bliss Spa, walk-in showers with rainfall showerheads and more. Four-legged guests will enjoy Arf℠, Aloft's pet program that offers branded beds, bowls, treats and toys.

"Aloft Hotels are different by design, aiming to give today's modern, tech-savvy traveler an energized experience that includes everything they need and nothing that they don't," said Bridget Higgins, senior global brand director, Aloft Hotels. "We're thrilled to be bringing this innovative concept to Ocean City, particularly as it is one of the first examples of our future-proofed design for Aloft Hotels worldwide."

In addition to bringing the first lifestyle hotel to Ocean City, Aloft will provide at least 60 jobs to the area once open.

"Infusing jobs and business opportunities into our local economy is very important to us," added Burbage. "Locally-sourced builders are always a priority for us; we employed over 100 individuals from local construction companies to work on the Aloft. We're proud to collaborate with our hometown business partners to provide an exciting new option for our Ocean City visitors."

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Coming up in October 2019...

Revenue Management: Focus On Profit

Revenue Management is still a relatively new profession within hotel operations and as such, it continues to evolve. One significant trend in this area is a shift away from using revenue as the foundation to generate key performance indicators (KPIs) and to instead place the emphasis on profit. Traditionally, revenue managers have relied on total revenue per available room (TrevPAR) and revenue per available room (RevPAR) as the basis of their KPIs. Now, some revenue managers are using gross operating profit per available room (GOPPAR) as their primary KPI. This puts profit at the center of revenue management strategy, and managers are increasingly searching for new ways to increase the profitability of their hotels. Return on Investment is the objective of any hotel investment, so it is only logical that profitability and ROI will be emphasized going forward. Another trend is an expanded focus on direct hotel bookings. Revenue managers know that one way to increase profitability is to steer guests away from online travel agencies (OTAs) and book directly with the hotel. This tactic also reinforces brand identity and loyalty, and encourages repeat business. In addition, it provides a valuable platform to market the hotel directly to the customer, and to upsell room upgrades or other services to them. Another trend for revenue managers involves automation in their software programs. Revenue management systems with automation are far more desirable than those without it. Automating data entry and logistics increases efficiency, allowing managers to spend more time on formulating strategy. As a bonus, an automated system helps with aggregating and interpreting data. The October issue of the Hotel Business Review will address these developments and document how some leading hotels are executing their revenue management strategies.