Trump Launching New Hotel Brand, Avoiding Use of Trump Name

Back in February we learned that Donald Trump’s employees and family are concerned what his candidacy is doing to the hotel business.

People and conferences really are booking away from Trump Hotels. Last summer I was supposed to speak at a conference at Trump Soho, but it was moved last minute to another hotel. There was no upside to the sponsoring company to be associated with the Trump brand and there was downside risk — enough to eat last minute cancellation penalties.

There’s data, too, that suggests bookings are down at Trump-branded properties since his campaign for President took off.

Donald Trump told the FEC last month that he has ‘only’ $165 million in cash and marketable securities. That’s an extraordinarily low percentage of his self-reported net worth.

The biggest thing that boosts Trump’s self-reported net worth is the $3.3 billion he attributes to the value of his brand — not to real estate holdings or other investments, but simply that the use of the Trump name itself is worth billions. Forbes pegs the value at under $150 million. (This isn’t something that generally goes into the calculation of most individuals’ net worth at all.)

Trump says his net worth goes up and down with his own feelings in other words what he thinks his brand is worth changes with his mood.

So it’s notable that Trump is launching a new lifestyle hotel brand and they’ve decided that the best way to do it is not even to use the Trump name.

Trump Hotels held an event in New York City…to say the company is planning to launch a brand-new, as-yet un-named lifestyle hotel brand that is a “response to the to the massive growth of the technology-centric ‘we’-economy.’”

…[T]he exact name for the new brand has yet to be announced, but whatever name it does eventually bear, it won’t be that of Trump. Further details about the new brand remain scarce, including when the new brand will actually launch or when or where the first development will be.

Perhaps the value of Trump’s brand, then, derives from his steaks, water, and defunct board game. (I did buy the game on a lark off eBay, I haven’t played it – the reviews aren’t great – but it’s selling for more these days.)

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Now if he were to truthfully release his tax return, we can remove all doubt!

    (… that Trump does nothing truthfully)

  2. Melting down like an orange pudding pop. Where will the stupidest people on earth go now that they’ve destroyed the party that never wanted them in the first place? David Duke?

  3. Too bad can not separate Trump personality (which is probably the reason he had gotten this far) from his policies many of which I agree with to help the US.

  4. This is very interesting information. Until I see all his tax returns I would never believe anything he says. Our corporate headquarters has banned all stays at Trump properties. I’m sure we’re not the only company to institute this policy.

  5. @John: What policies? Its a free association of prejudices, bans, promises of wheeler dealing, uncertainty of how nukes might be used (still thinking on that one, and whether Europe would be spared) and anything else a bloated privileged bigot would spew if given a microphone. But it’s catnip to bigots and simpletons.

    After Bush the world started teaching in their schools that the US is seriously compromised by the forced ignorance of about 1/3 know-nothings. When my international surfing students gather for pizza the Spanish, Aussies, Brits and Germans teach the Americans about these rednecks who are deemed the stupidest people on earth. The Americans have no idea this is who ruined our country or even what citizenship means. It isnt’ about Britney Spears or who’s on Dancing with the Stars, so it doesn’t count. The rest of the world watches aghast.

  6. Gary,
    Please stick to miles and points on your site. I am NOT INTERESTED in your political view, and I’m sure most of your viewers can care less. Every time you post a blog on your political view you just diminishes your own. You’re based in Austin. Your guy Cruz lost. Get over it.

  7. @John sez: “Too bad can not separate Trump personality (which is probably the reason he had gotten this far) from his policies many of which I agree with to help the US.”

    Setting aside the fact that Trump personality and his so-called “policies” (to the extent that he does not alter them ad hoc) are inseparable, exactly which of his “policies” do you agree with and how do you figure any of them could possibly help the US? Building a “beautiful wall” south of the border and forcing the Mexican government to pay for it? Deporting 11 million undocumented immigrants? Banning all Muslims from entering the US? Accusing judges of bias based on their ethnic backgrounds? Encouraging nuclear proliferation by saying it is okay for Japan and South Korea to try to get the bomb to defend themselves? Isolating the US from global competition?

    More bluntly, how can overt xenophobia, misogyny, or racism/bigotry possibly be “policies” that America could possibly espouse and remain the moral compass that it ought to be as the world’s last and only superpower?

    Inquiring minds wanna know…

  8. at this point, I wouldn’t know who to vote for. On one hand would love to see a female prez, on the other hand Trump may be over the top with his comments, but think with his money can do things that’s right for this country. I don’t believe everything about the two of them. they both are shady to a degree, but if I had to choose the lesser of two evils, Id have to go with Trump on this one…not that I like either one.

  9. @scott sez: “Trump may be over the top with his comments, but think with his money can do things that’s right for this country….[i]f I had to choose the lesser of two evils, Id have to go with Trump on this one…not that I like either one.

    A truly incredible statements…

    Because you are clearly a “low information” voter, who thinks that Trump is a successful businessman worth $10 billion, as he claims, while evidence suggests that he is a con man who may not be worth even $1 billion, let’s see if we can help you decide. First, we cannot verify Trump’s claim that he is worth $10 billion because he is the only presidential candidate since Watergate (i.e. for some 40 years) to ever refuse to release his tax returns. The reason he won’t release his tax returns is precisely because he is not as rich as he claims and this will become clear to all (including to low information voters who are supporting him) if his tax returns are made public.

    Worse, rather than your hope that Trump “with his money can do things that’s right for this country”, below is what you can expect Trump to do TO the country with taxpayers money:

    “In 1991, Trump’s Taj Mahal located in Atlantic City was in debt for billions of dollars. As a result, Trump’s corporation filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. The Bankruptcy court allowed Trump to reorganize his corporate debts and allowed the casino to keep operating. Trump did surrender half of his ownership interests in the Taj Mahal. He chose to sell his yacht and airplane to help make loan payments.

    In 1992, Trump filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on his Trump Plaza Hotel in Atlantic City. At this time, Trump owed $550 million on the Trump Plaza Hotel. As part of the restructuring, Trump gave Citibank a 49% interest in the hotel. He was given a lenient repayment plan. Trump was able to stay on as CEO but he had to give up his salary.

    Trump Hotels and Casino Resorts filed for bankruptcy in 2004. The corporation had $1.8 billion dollars of debt. Trump reduced his share in the company to 25% thereby surrendering his control of the corporation. The corporation received lower interest rates and another loan to upgrade the properties.

    In 2009, Trump Entertainment Resorts filed bankruptcy after missing a large bond interest payment. Trump was not able to agree with his board of directors on a repayment plan so he resigned as chairman of the board and retained only a 10% ownership interest in the corporation.”

    In addition to being a failed businessman, Trump is a xenophobe, misogynist, racist and a boor who would make fun even of disabled people. Is that someone with the temperament to be the leader of the free world?

    How about Hillary?

    — Secretary of State and top US diplomat for 4 years (left office with 65% approval rating)
    — Two-term US Senator
    — First Lady of the US for 8 years
    — First Lady of Arkansas
    — Widely hailed around the world as a tireless advocate of children and women issues.
    — Strong civil rights record, going back to when she was still a Yale Law School student.

    If you or anyone, for that matter, still believe that the choice on November 8 will be between “two lesser evils”, then I truly hope there aren’t too many voters like you out there because the unthinkable could happen: the least qualified and most unfit candidate ever to seek the US presidency and a dangerous charlatan and megalomaniac would become the leader of the free world.

    Truly scary…

  10. “Had” gotten this far. Wow are the regular members of this corner of the Internet in for a surprise come next year.

    Hilarious. Have a great summer.

  11. I live in Europe. So a lot of the travel info is of no help to me. And these comments?? What do you think….

  12. Gary, you’re too smart to be taking those claims about Trump hotel bookings at face value.

    When you go to the original source, it’s very clear Hipmunk was looking at the change in Trump hotel bookings *as a share of total Hipmunk bookings*. So even if there was actually an increase in the number of Trump bookings over time, it could’ve appeared as a decrease in Hipmunk’s figures if other hotels were increasing their bookings faster or if Hipmunk was simply adding other hotels.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if, in fact, Trump is losing business, but this data doesn’t establish it.

  13. All your political posts do is incite your readers to attack each other for their own political viewpoints. That’s not the reason anyone comes here. I agree with Johnny – your political views are pertinent here – your travel info is appreciated and valued. Can you please stick to what you excel at and leave the politics at home.

  14. 3.3 billion for the Trump brand? Our trade association just cancelled a major trade show at the Trump Doral. The brand seems like it may be sinking by the hour.

  15. The “data” is bogus and Gary knows it. But it’s an easy way to get the libs riled up.

  16. But what about the Cons, who have truly come into their own with the Donald! Trump U?

  17. One of the reasons they teach in the schools of others countries after Bush that the dupes of the rightwing are the stupidest person on earth is because they construct their own reality that allows no injection whatsoever of unbiased fact. For awhile I could reach some of my relatives with Snopes debunking site, so they just spread the rumour it was bought out by George Soros and now it is discredited as liberal news media along with everything else that isn’t part of their lunatic rumour mill. This started with AM talk radio that programmed back-to-back farthest-right conspiracy theory all day long and then finished off at night on every station nationally with an overnight UFO show (all of a piece). The Superstar of this Rush Limbaugh lost his hearing snorting OxyContin, while the UFO meister Art Bell was charged with molesting his own children.

  18. DCS you’re a troll and a keyboard warrior bully stop calling people low-information voter. Thanks.

  19. Leave your politics at home or else your website may suffer a similar fate as Trumps hotel bookings and conference business. You run a travel site, not a political one. You must please both sides.

  20. Our company or any of it’s overseas divisions no longer allows any employee worldwide to stay at Trump Hotels and I am sure that will apply to hotels owned by Trump under a different name. Now that it’s been established that Trump thinks it’s smart that he doesn’t pay any federal income taxes to support our vets, military or anything else for that matter I feel the decision by senior management was justified. I prefer to support people and companies who give back and contribute to the well being of our society.

  21. On the other hand Mr Mark MY company insists on booking Trump Hotels and our overseas divisions are also booking there. Oh dear, you are so funny!

  22. Dr Kim I guess your company of one doesn’t stay at Trump’s hotels enough because their bookings have plummeted. Maybe you need to travel more. The facts speak for themselves whether you like it or not.

    Trump hotel bookings have plummeted nearly 60% for the first half of 2016, according to new data released by the online travel site Hipmunk. The site measured the percentage of Trump bookings within its markets. For the first quarter, it found reservations tumbled 59.36% compared with the previous quarter, and for the second quarter, the group suffered a 57.46% decline, according to Hipmunk.

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