C-K, La Quinta Split Up Over Hyatt

CHICAGO Cramer-Krasselt here has resigned the La Quinta Inns & Suites business due to growing concerns over an emerging conflict with another account, Hyatt Hotels, according to the shop.

“As long as Hyatt was not in that space it was OK,” said agency CEO Peter Krivkovich. “But now they have Summerfield Inns and they’re launching Hyatt Place. It’s not a conflict yet, but it’s going to be.”

The shop, which added the La Quinta account in early 2005 without a review, will continue to work with the client through the next three months as it searches for a new agency, Krivkovich said. The independent shop had pitched some new concepts to help the client maintain momentum, he added.

Prior to C-K, the account had been at Interpublic Group’s TM Advertising in Dallas. It could not be immediately determined if the company would hold a review. A client representative could not immediately be reached.

The Chicago agency in May 2005 broke a campaign that offered humorous translations for La Quinta. In one spot, after a harried businesswoman has trouble finding a connection on her cell phone at a competitor’s motel, La Quinta is translated as “back in business.” Print ads used shots of the hotel’s signature tower and copy such as “Spanish for ‘ahhhh'” and “Spanish for ‘the trip away from the trip.'”

La Quinta spent $10 million on advertising through September 2006, according to Nielsen Monitor-Plus. Comparatively, Hyatt spent more than $20 million during the same period, per Nielsen.

La Quinta operates and franchises more than 500 hotels in 40 states and Canada.