Wyndham’s Women Own the Room signs 30+ hotels in first year

Wyndham Hotels & Resorts' Women Own the Room program has signed more than 30 hotels across the U.S. and Canada in its inaugural year, 10 of which are now open. Women Own the Room is designed to advance and empower women entrepreneurs to break through the predominantly male-dominated hotel industry.

“Representation matters. Opening doors for traditionally underrepresented owners unlocks potential and possibility, and paves the way for others to follow,” Lisa Checchio, Wyndham's chief marketing officer, said in a statement. “Women play a critical role in the hotel industry, and Women Own the Room is breaking down barriers to actively change the face of hotel ownership.”

Data from the Castell Project, shared in 2022, shows that while the hospitality industry is diverse, it lags when it comes to diversity in senior positions and ownership with women holding less than 10 percent of hotel development and leadership roles. Women Own the Room delivers comprehensive financial solutions for new construction and conversion projects with enhanced capital support and reduced initial franchise fees, according to Wyndham. The program also offers members personalized operational support and establishes an inclusive community for networking and continuing education for women in hospitality.

Colorado Microtel

Nearly 50 percent of the hotels affiliated with Women Own the Room are new-construction projects. Among them is the upcoming Microtel by Wyndham in New Castle, Colo. The hotel is owned by Wyndham franchisee Elizabeth Avery and is on track to break ground later this year.

Growing up as a child of Polish immigrants, Avery watched her parents pursue their dream of hospitality when they opened their first hotel in New Castle. The experience created childhood aspirations that one day she could do the same. Following a career in the gas and oil industry, Avery was drawn to Wyndham and has since been able to leverage the company’s scale and resources to navigate the hurdles that come with new construction.

“I know the hospitality industry because I grew up in it, but this is my first time spearheading the construction of a new hotel. New construction is not straightforward, and costs, timelines and securing financing are not black and white,” Avery said. “I know Wyndham is dedicated to my success because of the resources they continue to provide, along with the one-on-one, collaborative approach they take as I work through my custom build. Wyndham has helped make what is a complicated process more seamless—and that support goes a long way.”

Avery added this opportunity is a natural step for her, and she doesn’t see her journey in hospitality ending here. With Wyndham’s unique Women Own the Room program, she sees the value in elevating the skillsets women bring to the table and looks forward to being part of a robust community of entrepreneurs.

Georgia Travelodge

Since launching in January 2022, Women Own the Room has led to the opening of 10 hotels across the U.S., including new locations for brands like Days Inn by Wyndham, Baymont by Wyndham and AmericInn by Wyndham. Among them is the Travelodge by Wyndham in Macon, Ga., owned by Women Own the Room member Preeti Singh.

Singh came to the U.S. in 2007 on a student visa, and while earning her Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Findlay, she volunteered and learned from a local family in their Travelodge by Wyndham hotel in Fremont, Ohio. Following her graduation, she began to pursue her dream of ownership. Singh worked every job she could to get experience in hotels, and was hired as a GM at a Microtel by Wyndham in Tifton, Ga. in 2009. Over the next six years, she doubled the hotel’s revenue while in her role.

In 2016, Singh bought her first hotel, and based on her history with Wyndham, and in response to the launch of Women Own the Room, she converted it to a Travelodge by Wyndham in 2022—coming full circle from where she started her journey. The 45-room hotel underwent a full renovation prior to opening and features hardwood floors throughout, updated bathrooms and new bedding, among other improvements.