Press Release

Choice Hotels And Penn National Gaming Team Up To Offer More Fun And Entertainment Through The Ascend Hotel Collection

January 13, 2021 at 10:11 AM EST
Members of Choice Hotels' and Penn National Gaming's Loyalty Programs Will Soon Earn and Redeem Points When Staying at Hotel or Gaming Properties Across the Country

ROCKVILLE, Md. and WYOMISSING, Pa., Jan. 13, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Choice Hotels International, Inc. (NYSE: CHH) has entered into a strategic agreement with Penn National Gaming, Inc. (NASDAQ: PENN), the nation's largest regional and most broadly diversified gaming company with 41 properties across 19 states. The agreement signals an expansion in benefits for loyalty members of both companies, allowing members of Choice's award-winning loyalty program, Choice Privileges, to book Penn properties directly with Choice — while earning and redeeming Choice Privileges points for their stays once fully implemented. Slated to roll out in phases this year, the alliance will offer reciprocal earning and redemption benefits for Choice Privileges members and members of Penn's mychoice loyalty program.

"With these exciting Penn properties joining Choice and our Ascend Hotel Collection network, we will be able to provide guests even more upscale travel experiences and a wider variety of fun and entertainment on the road," said Robert McDowell, chief commercial officer, Choice Hotels. "Teaming up with Penn positions our more than 47 million Choice Privileges members to easily book a casino resort directly with Choice while continuing to earn points. Plus, there are more than 1,500 Choice-branded hotels within an hour's drive of one of Penn's casinos, racetracks or sports betting locations, so Penn loyalty members will similarly have the chance to use their mycash on stays at Choice-branded hotels across the country. Penn will also benefit from our award-winning global reservation system, which drives more than $9 billion in revenue to the 7,100 hotels in our system annually."

The agreement will add nearly 7,000 upscale rooms to Choice Hotels' network as part of its Ascend Hotel Collection, and members of both programs will be able to enjoy the following features as the alliance is implemented in multiple phases this year:

  • Earning and Redeeming at Penn Locations: Earn and redeem Choice Privileges points as well as Elite night credits for stays at 22 Penn locations when booked through Choice. 
  • Earning and Redeeming at Choice Hotels Locations: Earn mychoice tier points as well as earn and redeem mycash for stays at select Choice Hotels brands.
  • Tier Level Reciprocity: Members of either loyalty program will enjoy reciprocal status in both programs.
  • Top Gaming Brands: Choice Privileges members gain access to top gaming brands, including Hollywood, Ameristar, and L'Auberge, which offer approximately 50,000 gaming machines, 1,300 table games, live racing and sports betting.
  • Entertainment: Whether it is an event (when safely permitted), an adventurous evening or a day of relaxation, everything guests need for the ultimate getaway can be found under one roof. Penn offers a variety of stay and play casino resorts for Choice Privileges members to choose from, and a multitude of amenities and attractions designed to entertain and delight at any of the following properties:
    • Ameristar Black Hawk – Black Hawk, Colorado
    • Hollywood Casino JolietJoliet, Illinois
    • Ameristar East Chicago – East Chicago, Indiana 
    • Hollywood Casino LawrenceburgLawrenceburg, Indiana
    • Ameristar Council Bluffs – Council Bluffs, Iowa
    • L'Auberge Baton RougeBaton Rouge, Louisiana
    • Boomtown Bossier CityBossier City, Louisiana
    • Margaritaville Resort CasinoBossier City, Louisiana
    • L'Auberge Lake CharlesLake Charles, Louisiana
    • Boomtown New OrleansNew Orleans, Louisiana
    • Hollywood Casino BangorBangor, Maine
    • Greektown Casino-HotelDetroit, Michigan 
    • Hollywood Casino Gulf CoastBay St. Louis, Mississippi
    • Hollywood Casino TunicaTunica, Mississippi
    • Ameristar Vicksburg – Vicksburg, Mississippi
    • Hollywood Casino St. LouisMaryland Heights, Missouri
    • Argosy Casino Riverside – Riverside, Missouri
    • River City CasinoSt. Louis, Missouri 
    • M ResortHenderson, Nevada
    • Cactus Petes and Horseshu – Jackpot, Nevada
    • Zia Park CasinoHobbs, New Mexico
    • Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races – Charles Town, West Virginia

"We're constantly exploring new ways to provide our loyal guests with more options for their next adventure on the road while also being able to earn and redeem points. Our new collaboration offers a great opportunity for Choice Privileges members to enjoy thrilling experiences at Penn's properties around the country," said Jamie Russo, vice president, loyalty programs and customer engagement, Choice Hotels. "Our research shows that not only do many of our Choice Privileges members already enjoy gaming, but a significant number live within driving distance from a Penn property — so we know they will be excited to visit these top casino brands and be part of the action."

"We are excited to provide our most loyal customers with even more valuable ways to engage with the mychoice loyalty program.  This new alliance with Choice Hotels unlocks access to award-winning hospitality experiences where our mychoice guests can earn, redeem and be recognized for their continued loyalty.  Choice Hotels has several properties our mychoice customers will find very conveniently located near our casinos, and we also know our guests will find a great deal of value in being able to visit destination hotels and resorts in the Choice Hotels portfolio," said Jennifer Weissman, senior vice president and chief marketing officer, Penn National Gaming, Inc.

Named a top hotel loyalty program by both USA Today's 10 Best Readers' Choice Awards and U.S. News & World Report, Choice Privileges membership is free, offering fast rewards, including bonus points, airline miles, or credits for premium coffee and shared rides through the exclusive, one-of-a kind, Your Extras program. For more information or to enroll in Choice Privileges, visit www.choicehotels.com/choice-privileges.

All Choice-branded hotels are participating in Commitment to Clean, an initiative that builds upon the strong foundation of franchisees' longstanding dedication to cleanliness with enhanced training and best practices for cleaning, disinfecting and social distancing. For more information on Commitment to Clean, visit https://www.choicehotels.com/about/commitment-to-clean-hotels.

Penn has established a special COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund under the Penn National Gaming Foundation to provide assistance to team members and local relief organizations, and has raised over $3.7 million to help team members and the communities in which they operate. Penn has also implemented comprehensive cleanliness protocols and implemented various new health and safety precautions, developed in close consultation with state regulators and public health officials.

About Choice Hotels®
Choice Hotels International, Inc. (NYSE: CHH) is one of the largest lodging franchisors in the world. With more than 7,100 hotels, representing nearly 600,000 rooms, in over 40 countries and territories as of September 30, 2020, the Choice® family of hotel brands provide business and leisure travelers with a range of high-quality lodging options from limited service to full-service hotels in the upscale, midscale, extended-stay and economy segments. The award-winning Choice Privileges® loyalty program offers members benefits ranging from everyday rewards to exceptional experiences. For more information, visit www.choicehotels.com.  

Ascend Hotel Collection: Let the Destination Reach You.
The Ascend Hotel Collection® global portfolio of unique, boutique, and historic independent hotels and resorts is part of Choice Hotels International, one of the world's largest leading hotel companies. Recognized as the hotel industry's first "soft brand" concept, the Ascend Hotel Collection has more than 250 properties open and operating worldwide, including in France, the United Kingdom, Denmark, Finland, Ireland, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, Australia, Canada, Ecuador, and the Caribbean region. Membership with the Ascend Hotel Collection enables distinctive, independent properties to gain a global presence while maintaining their local charm. For more information, visit www.choicehotels.com/Ascend.

About Penn National Gaming
With the nation's largest and most diversified regional gaming footprint, including 41 properties across 19 states, Penn National continues to evolve into a highly innovative omni-channel provider of retail and online gaming, live racing and sports betting entertainment. The Company's properties feature approximately 50,000 gaming machines, 1,300 table games and 8,800 hotel rooms, and operate under various well-known brands, including Hollywood, Ameristar, and L'Auberge. Our wholly-owned interactive division, Penn Interactive, operates retail sports betting across the Company's portfolio, as well online social casino, bingo, and iCasino products. In February 2020, Penn National entered into a strategic partnership with Barstool Sports, whereby Barstool is exclusively promoting the Company's land-based and online casinos and sports betting products, including the Barstool Sportsbook mobile app, to its national audience. The Company's omni-channel approach is bolstered by the mychoice loyalty program, which rewards and recognizes its over 20 million members for their loyalty to both retail and online gaming and sports betting products with the most dynamic set of offers, experiences, and service levels in the industry.

Forward-Looking Statement
This communication includes "forward-looking statements" about future events, including anticipated benefits of the alliance with Penn National Gaming and Choice.  Such statements are subject to numerous risks and uncertainties, including the potential for delays and the success of the integration of the Penn National Gaming properties and Choice properties into their respective loyalty programs and reservation and distribution platforms, as well as other potential "Risk Factors" described in their Annual Reports on Form 10-K and Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, any of which could cause actual results to be materially different from our expectations.

© 2021 Choice Hotels International, Inc. All rights reserved.

Ameristar, Argosy, Boomtown, Greektown, Hollywood, L'Auberge, M Resort and mychoice loyalty program are registered trademarks of Penn National Gaming, Inc. All rights reserved.  Penn has a licensing agreement with a third party to use the "Margaritaville®" trademark in connection with the operations of Margaritaville in Bossier City, Louisiana.

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SOURCE Choice Hotels International, Inc.

Choice Hotels: Pearl Amaechi Tel: 301-592-6122, Email: MediaRelations@choicehotels.com, Penn National Gaming: Eric Schippers,Tel: 610-373-2400, Email: PNGWebsiteMail@pngaming.com

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INVESTOR INQUIRIES

Joseph N. Jaffoni
JCIR
(212) 835-8500
penn@jcir.com

Justin Sebastiano
Senior Vice President, Finance & Treasurer
Penn National Gaming, Inc.
(610) 373-2400