The History of Holiday Inn

The History of Holiday Inn

About our brand and the changes along the way

Kemmons Wilson’s insightfulness changed everything. In 1952 he created a brand of affordable hotels where everyday families could enjoy a consistently clean and friendly environment. From then on Holiday Inn celebrated many successes.

1952: First Holiday Inn hotel opened in Memphis, TN, USA by Kemmons Wilson.

1965: Holiday Inn embraced technological innovation during its expansion, contracting IBM to design and implement the chain’s Holidex system.

Today Holidex is the enabler for all of our booking channels handling over 800,000 reservations every day… That’s nearly 300 million reservations per year.Holiday Inn Perth Refurbishment

1967: Holiday Inn Leiden opens in the Netherlands, the first Holiday inn to open in Europe.

1983: Holiday Inn introduces ‘Priority Club Rewards’ loyalty programme.

1993: Holiday Inn Hotels & Resorts becomes the largest hotel brand in the world with 365,000 rooms.

1995: Holiday Inn Hotels & Resorts Worldwide goes live on the internet. It’s the first hotel company to enable guests to book directly online.

2007: Holiday Inn Hotels & Resorts brand announces a $1 billion face lift in Dallas. During the project, hotel owners refurbished interiors, furnished rooms with new bedding and shower heads, and raised customer service standards. More than 3000 hotels now operate under new standard, making it the biggest relaunch in history.

2009: Holiday Inn Pudong Nanpu opens as the 100th Holiday Inn in Asia Pacific.

2012: Holiday Inn Hotels celebrates 60 years of innovation and welcoming guests.

Holiday Inn Brand Family is the official hotel provider to the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. Our colleagues run the Athletes’ village and our teams around the world share our pride through initiatives including ‘Race Around the World’ and our global search for IHG’s Torch Relay Runners.


How the Holiday Inn brand fits in with IHG?

It all began in 1777 when William Bass opened a brewery in Burton-on-Trent in the UK. Bass made his first significant move into the holiday industry in 1988, buying Holiday Inn International. By 2003 the business had changed from domestic brewer to an international hospitality retailer and on 15 April InterContinental Hotel Group PLC became a stand alone hotel company listed on the London and New york stock exchanges. See the full story click here.


Where the story begins

Where the story begins

How Holiday Inn came to be

We are very excited to share our Holiday Inn Perth City Centre Refurbishment journey with you but first we need to take a step back in time and see where the story beings.

In the beginning… BeginningBlog

In 1951, Kemmons Wilson set out by car on a family vacation with his wife and 5 kids. When he reached his destination he was unhappy with the facilities and amenities they had to offer a family and they charged him an extra $2 for each of his children – the room rate was $8.

He realised he could make a difference in America and within a year he’d opened his first Holiday Inn hotel in Memphis Tennessee to fix what was missing in hotels in America. Within 10 years, there were 400. The rest they say is history.

In the early 50s vacations were beyond the means of most families. Kemmons Wilson’s insightfulness changed all that. In 1952 he created a brand of affordable hotels where everyday families could enjoy a consistently clean and friendly environment.