|Jason Pomeranc at the Thompson Lower East Side. Photo by Ron Antonelli for The Observer.|
Thompson Hotels took over the Kimmel Center at NYU on Wednesday night, as Jason Pomeranc, co-owner of the luxury boutique brand, with such hotels as 60 Thompson, Thompson LES and Gild Hall in its portfolio, spoke to a room full of NYU hospitality students and alumni, touching on a host of subjects, from Thompson's positioning, to its plans for future growth.
While Pomeranc talked about the Thompson brand itself ("no intellectual snobbery," "global nomads," "tribal in nature," "creative inspiration to lodging") we were most intrigued by the brand's future growth forecast: 30 to 50 hotels in key gateway cities, with targets in such countries as China and Brazil. Pomeranc also remarked that a Thompson limited-service brand had been kicked around. "Kind of like a redeveloped motel in spirit," Pomeranc said. There's also discussion for a resort property before 2013.
Pomeranc started his discussion where it all began, 60 Thompson. The flagship property was built to fill a downtown Manhattan void, Pomeranc said, adding that the group never truly envisoned branching out past the one hotel. He then discussed each of Thompson's hotels, notably stating that Thompson Toronto would most likely be the template for all future international development.
Talk also centered on social media and online booking. Pomeranc said 75% of Thompson's bookings are made online. He said the company's focused on social media and he foresees a day when bookings could be made via Facebook, Foursquare or other social media platforms.