The SLS Hotel & Casino, as seen in 2013. Photo by Barb DeLollis.

The SLS Hotel & Casino, as seen in 2013. Photo by Barb DeLollis.

Hilton’s new Curio brand of high-end, independent hotels will grow quickly with nine hotels signed since the brand was launched in June, Hilton Worldwide CEO Chris Nassetta told Wall Street analysts.

“Our 11th brand is off to a strong start,” he said.

On a call that started at 10 a.m. EST today, Nassetta is currently speaking with analysts from J.P. Morgan, Nomura, Goldman Sachs and other investment banking firms to tell them about the company’s financial performance during Q2. As usual, Travel Update is listening to tell you the most relevant and interesting news for you.

The nine properties properties signed to Curio include the almost-open SLS hotel and casino on the Las Vegas Strip, he said. Another 75 Curio locations “are in various stages of discussion.”
“We believe that Curio will further enhance our ability to serve existing customer and attract new ones,” Nassetta said on the call.

Hilton previously announced the signing of the SLS hotel and casino slated to open in September at the Rat Pack-era Sahara on the norther end of the strip. The small but growing lifestyle brand founded by Sam Nazarian, who began his career running nightclubs in Los Angeles, also operates hotels in Los Angeles and Miami Beach.

Curio is designed to let owners and developers of four- and five-star hotels market their properties through Hilton’s global distribution system, similar to what Starwood does with its Luxury Collection brand and Marriott International does with its Autograph Collection brand.

The impact for consumers? Potentially higher rates. Nassetta told Wall Street analysts that Curio’s designed to drive “significant marketshare premiums,” which could lead to higher rates at existing hotels, and also lower the hotels’ cost of gaining customers. Hilton’s promising the owners and developers

Nassetta said he expects to have “hundreds of Curio” properties.

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