IHG Hotels & Resorts (IHG) has signed a letter of intent (LOI) with Axe Management Partners to launch its new midscale conversion brand Garner in Japan this year.
The partnership will see Garner make its Japan debut in 2H2024 with three conversion hotels in Osaka, adding more than 500 rooms to IHG’s growing Japan estate.
The three properties in Osaka will undergo refurbishment before rebranding as Garner. Located in the centre of Osaka, just moments away from the famous Midosuji shopping street and Dotonbori, the three hotels are nearby Honmachi Station, and just an hour away from Kansai International and Itami airports.
In addition, guests at the three hotels will be able to enjoy all the perks of IHG One Rewards loyalty programme.
Launched in August last year, IHG expects Garner to reach an estate of over 500 hotels over the next 10 years and 1,000 hotels over the next 20 years. The world’s first Garner hotel opened in Seattle less than three months after the brand’s launch and, now, the Japan announcement is the first LOI for the brand outside of North America.
Elie Maalouf, CEO, IHG Hotels. & Resorts, commented: “The first Garner LOI signing outside of North America is a significant milestone for the brand, and one we are very excited about. Japan is well-known for its high-quality domestic midscale hotels, and we think Garner is the perfect brand to help take them to a global stage with IHG’s powerful systems, world-class technology, market leading operations support and award-winning IHG One Rewards loyalty programme.”
“We have great confidence in the Garner brand and are determined to deliver an experience that will truly impress domestic and international travellers,” added Gary Kwok, founder and CEO, Axe Management Partners.
IHG currently has 54 open or pipeline hotels across Japan, with plans to further expand its portfolio.