Kemmons Wilson and his family take a vacation by car from their home in Memphis, Tennessee, to Washington, D.C., and are disappointed by the lack of comfort and conveniences in the roadside motels they encounter.
The first Holiday Inn opens its doors on Summer Avenue in Memphis, Tennessee.
Wilson and Memphis builder Wallace Johnson form a partnership to develop and franchise Holiday Inns.
Holiday Inns of America is incorporated. The first Holiday Inn franchise opens in Clarksdale, Mississippi.
The National Association of Holiday Inns of America (NAHI) is created to represent owners of Holiday Inn hotels.
NAHI’s organizational meeting is held in Memphis, Tennessee. Joseph Vatterott is elected its first president.
The first Holiday Inn hotel opens outside the U.S. in Montreal, Quebec, Canada.
NAHI changes its name to the International Association of Holiday Inns (IAHI).
Antitrust lawsuit allows owners to operate other brands besides Holiday Inn.
The IAHI becomes a nonprofit corporation, IAHI, Inc.
In honor of the company’s 25th anniversary, the IAHI presents Holiday Inns, Inc., with an eight-foot bronze sculpture called “The Torchbearers.” The statue was used as the model for the company’s Torchbearer Award, recognizing the system’s top-performing hotels.
A member card program providing complimentary room nights for Association members in good standing is introduced.
The IAHI forms a Priority Club committee.
Owner magazine is launched for Association members.
Holiday Inn Worldwide moves its corporate headquarters from Memphis, Tennessee, to Atlanta, Georgia. The Association also relocates its offices to Atlanta to coincide with the corporate move.
The IAHI establishes Holiday Inn, Holiday Express and Crowne Plaza brand committees.
An Internet website is created for the IAHI.
The IAHI Latin America committee holds its first meeting.
The IAHI Staybridge Suites brand committee is established.
The IAHI launches its Leadership Institute.
The Kemmons Wilson Service Award is created by the IAHI, honoring an owner or IHG executive who has demonstrated extraordinary service to the owner community that makes a difference for the future of the brands. Past Chairman George Glover (2001-2002) is named the first recipient.
With the endorsement of the IAHI, IHG adopts new, industry-leading brand standards that revolutionize how hotel companies deal with selling or re-selling room inventory via third-party intermediaries.
The IAHI celebrates its 50th anniversary.
The IAHI General Manager Academy graduates its inaugural class.
With the full backing of the IAHI, IHG announces a global, $1 billion relaunch of the Holiday Inn brand family, including Holiday Inn, Holiday Inn Express and Express by Holiday Inn.
The IAHI and IHG collaborate on a global, weeklong series of systemwide Celebrate Service events honoring the contributions of the 350,000-plus people in IHG-affiliated hotels and corporate offices.
The IAHI renames itself the IHG Owners Association.