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CONSUMER BRIEFS

February 16, 1996|Times Wire Services

Howard Johnson Dumping Orange Roofs: The orange roofs of Howard Johnson, a familiar site along America's roads for decades, will begin disappearing as the motel and restaurant chain tries to update its image. From now on, Howard Johnson Motor Lodges will be called inns, said Eric Pfeffer, who heads Howard Johnson International Inc., a unit of HFS Inc. Multistory Howard Johnson motels will be called hotels, and higher-end locations will be called plaza hotels. Only about 100 of the more than 500 Howard Johnson motor lodges still have orange roofs, which have disappeared as hotel architecture has changed, Pfeffer said. The motor lodge moniker is outdated, he added, noting that "if you look carefully," a hint of an orange roof can be seen in a new corporate logo. Howard Johnson Co., founded in the 1950s in Quincy, Mass., has been out of the Johnson family's hands since 1980, when it was acquired by London-based Imperial Group.

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