Volcano House, located on Hawaii Island, is a member of Aqua-Aston Hospitality’s new Instinct brand of boutique properties. // © 2015 Aqua-Aston Hospitality
Feature image (above): Aston Kaanapali Shores on Maui is part of the Aston Hotels and Resorts brand. // © 2015 Aqua-Aston Hospitality
Hawaii-based hotel management companies Aqua Hospitality and Aston Hotels and Resorts have joined forces, now operating as Aqua-Aston Hospitality.
The new, integrated company is promising travel agents a one-stop shop for Hawaii accommodations while providing new incentives for booking the 50-plus properties under its umbrella.
Aqua-Aston Hospitality features five brands designed to reach a wide range of travelers. Those groups include:
- Aston Hotels and Resorts, with hotels, condominium resorts and villas
- Aqua Hotels and Resorts, featuring upper-midscale hotels with an active, playful vibe
- Lite Hotels, catering to the budget traveler seeking friendly, local digs
- Instinct Hotel Collection, with unique boutique properties at a higher price point
- Maui Condo and Home, providing extended stays without resort fees
With a combined 80 years in operation, Aqua and Aston have been major players in Hawaii’s tourism industry. As company officials worked on integrating the two brands, they examined similar case studies, such as United Continental Holdings, according to Matt Bailey, president and chief operating officer of Aqua-Aston Hospitality.
“What has historically worked best for other corporate entities will also work for us, because by keeping both companies’ names, we can capitalize on two respected brands that are both well-respected and have strong followings,” Bailey said.
According to Hawaii Tourism Authority, Hawaii is in a position of growth, which is leading to new development and attracting major brands, according to Bailey.
“Rebranding to Aqua-Aston Hospitality and clearly defining our integrated offerings was necessary to better communicate the distinctive brands that we manage,” he said.
Aqua-Aston Hospitality features a team of sales reps located across the U.S. and internationally who can sell all five brands.
“Our online booking process is fast and easy to understand,” Bailey said.
For travel agents, Aqua-Aston Hospitality is offering a year-round cash-back bonus program, paying up to $250 per booking.
“Both Aqua and Aston have had incentive programs in the past, but our new cash-back bonus program takes the best practices from both,” Bailey said. “We recognize what is important to our travel partners — cash in their pockets — and this program, which applies across our integrated portfolio, gives us more opportunities to deliver it.”