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Might Morgans Hotels and Soho House team up?

Might hip boutique hotel operator Morgans Hotel Group team up in some way with Soho House, the uber-hip, private membership club chain?

Let me be clear: There is nothing in the works right now.

However, it’s possible, Wall Street analysts learned on Tuesday’s quarterly earnings call with Morgans’ top executives. (Want more Q4 news? Here’s Morgans’ fourth-quarter 2011 press release.)

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Some background:

Morgans operates trendy boutique hotels that attract creative types such as the recently updated Delano in Miami’s South Beach neighborhood; the Hudson, Mondrian Soho and Royalton in New York City, and the Clift in San Francisco.

Soho House started in London in 1995, primarily attracting members in the arts, film and media worlds. Today, Soho House runs private clubs – some with hotel components – in four additional cities: Berlin, New York, Miami Beach and Los Angeles. Soho House members – who must approve new members – are such loyal and wealthy fans that they will travel to different cities to attend parties with other socially connected members. If you try to get in and you’re not a member, you’ll keep waiting outside.

So I was thrilled when on Tuesday afternoon’s call, MKM Partners analyst Chris Agnew mentioned the fact that Los Angeles billionaire Ron Burkle – a Morgans shareholder and board member – recently bought a controlling stake in Soho house through his Yucaipa fund.

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He followed up with a question that I’ve been pondering myself: “Does that potentially present some opportunities for you down the road?”

Read what Morgans CEO Michael Gross told Agnew yourself (emphasis mine):

“I’d just say that it’s a separate investment made outside of Morgans. But clearly we have tremendous respect for Soho House as a brand and what they do. I think we would look opportunistically at how we would position some of our new development with their brands.

So, nothing concrete today, but opportunities hopefully will present themselves. I think that the combination of a membership club with our hotels would be quite strong.”

More about two of Morgans’ three flagship hotels – the Delano and Hudson – in a later post.

Readers: Thoughts?

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