Marriott to open one hotel in Asia every eight days

Tuesday, 22 October 2013 00:22 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

Marriott International will open six hotels in Asia this month from its Ritz-Carlton and JW Marriott brands. The company’s growth of The Ritz-Carlton brand continues apace with openings in Chengdu, Tianjin and Bangalore this month, while it JW brand is adding Hanoi Bangalore and Delhi to its Asian locations. With 186 hotels in its signed pipeline, more than 135 of which it expects to open in the next three years, Marriott expects to more than double in size in Asia through 2016, reaching a total of 330 hotels with more than 96,000 rooms across 16 countries. During this time, the company expects to open on average, one hotel in the continent every eight days. “This is an exciting time for Marriott as we join with our local hotel development partners in contributing to Asia’s future growth,” said Marriott International President and CEO Arne Sorenson. “Our explosive expansion across the region reflects the popularity of our brands in Asia with owners and customers alike, and with a hotel opening almost every week across the continent we will be poised to welcome travellers from the world over. To expect to have some 330 hotels in the next three to four years represents phenomenal success of our brands and the commitment of our owners, but to be opening six iconic hotels from two of our world-class luxury brands this month alone is incredible.” Marriott already operates a broad portfolio of brands in Asia – Bvlgari Hotels & Resorts, The Ritz-Carlton, JW Marriott, Renaissance, Autograph Collection, Marriott Hotels, Courtyard and Marriott Executive Apartments. The company expects to open 50 hotels under its flagship Marriott Hotels brand alone in the region during the next few years. Marriott is also adding to its brand portfolio in Asia, with the introduction of Fairfield by Marriott into India just last week, and the expected arrival of Edition into Bangkok in 2016. Fairfield is a significant new brand launch for the company, with 12 hotels signed for India, and additional properties under construction in Indonesia and Nepal. “While I am of course very gratified that we have reached 330 open and signed hotels in Asia, we are looking forward to continued growth in the region,” said Marriott International president and managing director, Asia Pacific Simon Cooper. “We are seeing development across all the countries we are currently present in – including great growth in Japan. We are also entering new markets in Asia, having recently signed hotels in Nepal, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. China remains our biggest market in the region with 64 open hotels and signed contracts for an additional 89 hotels, which will take us to more than 150 hotels in the country in the next three years or so. As a result, we expect to grow our distribution from 16 cities in 12 provinces, municipalities and special administrative regions, to more than 50 cities in 26 provinces, municipalities, autonomous regions and special administrative regions by 2016.” To meet this growth, Marriott expects to add more than 41,000 staff in Asia, doubling its current workforce in the region to more than 80,000 between now and 2017 – with half of this number in China alone. To support its need for qualified staff Marriott International has invested in programs that support youth education through its own Marriott Institute of Hospitality in Anhui. Further, the Marriott Foundation has invested RMB 40.5 million ($6.5 million) to support for China’s youth through the Marriott China Hospitality Education Initiative (CHEI). Marriott also runs educational programmes in other countries in Asia, including the Mahindra Pride School organisation in India which offers on-the-job training at its hotels to youth from disadvantaged communities in the country. The company is also training its associates and teams outside of China to welcome and host Chinese travellers. “We continue to see this as a golden age of travel around the world,” said Sorenson, “and our hotels are there in increasing numbers to welcome travellers. In the process, we are opening doors to a world of opportunity for our guests and associates alike, by offering great careers to our associates in China and across Asia, delivering rewarding guest experiences across our growing brand portfolio in the region, as well as providing great investments for our hotel owners.”