An unprecedented scandal involving FOUR SEASONS questions relationship between hotel owners and brands which ensure management

An unprecedented scandal at FOUR SEASONS Aviara in San Diego USA between hotel owners and the FOUR SEASONS management company has drawn attention to the deep and dramatic issues facing the luxury hotel market worldwide. The international crisis which has brought a decline of up to 16% in occupancy at all major worldwide luxury hotels seems to add pressure on the relationship between owners and luxury brands. While more and more corporations cut costs and international luxury travellers reduce their budgets, hotel owners expect managing brands to adapt faster and more efficiently to these developments, especially reduce rates and increase discounting policies. At the same time, luxury brands claim there is a limit imposed by their prestige and marketing positioning. Under the current market conditions these issues create a huge gap of feasibility for the owners.
That is what happened at Four Seasons Aviara where staff prevented owners from entering the premises and denied access to books. Other similar scandals involve a US property of Mandarin Oriental and an Asian property managed by Ritz Carlton. The most recent is the suit filed by owners of TURNBERRY ISLE Florida restort against managing company FAIRMONT.