Hilton Hotels launches new brand, Denizen

A new hotel brand will boost Hilton Hotels Corp.'s luxury and lifestyle hotel brands. The brand, Denizen Hotels, will be positioned alongside Hilton's current deluxe offerings, the Waldorf Astoria Collection and Conrad Hotels & Resorts.

Locations currently under negotiation include several within the US - New York, Washington, DC, Miami, Beverly Hills and Hollywood, California, Las Vegas and Austin, Texas -  apart from London, Mumbai, Montreal, Abu Dhabi, Buenos Aires, Cancun and Los Cabos in Mexico, Istanbul, Jerusalem and Panama City, Panama.

Denizen is the second new brand Hilton has announced this year. It also launched a new extended-stay brand in January, called Home2Suites. Home2Suites, along with Hilton Garden Inn, Hampton Inn & Suites and Homewood Suites, will be based in Memphis. The company's other brands, including its luxury and lifestyle portfolio, will be based in the Washington, DC area.

The Beverly Hills, California-based company said each Denizen hotel would feature a spa, a lounge and individual work stations in the lobby. Hilton didn't disclose other design / furnishing details, room rates or when and where it plans to open its first property.

"While we continue to operate in a challenging macroeconomic environment, the addition of Denizen Hotels demonstrates our commitment to continuing to invest in our long-term growth," Hilton president and CEO Christopher Nassetta said in a statement. "Denizen hotels, a lifestyle brand that will attract business and leisure travelers across cultures and generations and has an authenticity that will appeal to today's sensibilities, will be highlighted by exceptional design and service at an accessible price point."

The Denizen brand is a return to the vision of Conrad Hilton, the company's founder, said Ross Klein, global head of luxury and lifestyle brands for Hilton. ''The term denizen literally means 'citizen of the world,'' Klein said in a statement. ''We created this new brand in homage to guests who desire and deserve the best hotel experiences, both on an emotional and functional level.''

In July 2007, in a record acquisition for the global hotel industry, US private equity firm Blackstone Group LP, bought out the Hilton Hotels Corp, for about $26-billion in cash when Hilton's 2006 net income was $572 million on revenue of $8.16 billion.

The Hilton is the world's largest hotel group by number of properties, though the Intercontinental Hotels Group is the larger in terms of the number of rooms. In the US Hilton is the second largest hotel chain after Marriott International Inc.