Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center in National Harbor has stopped targeting MGM National Harbor casino-goers, choosing instead to focus on other, more lucrative leisure travel business.
Gaylord National owner Ryman Hospitality Properties Inc. (NYSE: RHP) made the shift at the beginning of 2019, CEO Colin Reed said in the Nashville, Tennessee-based company’s first quarter earnings call.
“We’ve moved away from putting discounted casino rooms out and moving to more leisure-oriented rooms that are non-casino,” Reed said.
Part of the reason for that is MGM has been so popular with locals in the District, Maryland and Virginia that it isn’t out there doing much advertising in the wider region that would help sell Gaylord room-nights in tandem with a casino visit, said Patrick Chaffin, senior vice president of asset management for Ryman.
“So we initially tried to just bring in some of their more value-oriented customers but at the end of the day, we just decided that from a rate perspective, it just wasn’t making sense to continue to bring those folks in and so we’ve gone back to a higher-rated, more premium customer within the region and had tremendous success with bringing that customer back to the hotel,” Chaffin said.