Ribbon cutting at launch event
Marriott’s Craig Smith

A target of having 1,000 hotels open in the Asia Pacific region by the end of 2020 has been outlined by Marriott International – setting itself a growth plan of nearly 40 per cent within an 18-month period.

Speaking at the 15th Hotel Investment Conference – South Asia in Mumbai this week, Marriott International Asia Pacific President and Managing Director, Craig Smith, said the ‘40by2020’ strategy would see it increase its regional workforce by up to 50,000 new positions. This year alone, Marriott will open the doors to 100 new hotels in the Asia Pacific alone.

Marriott currently operates 710 hotels in 23 countries in the APAC region, representing 23 of its current suite of 30 brands. Australia is set to see several of these brands over this growth period including Element, Ritz-Carlton and the Luxury Collection.

“As important as our size is, our commitment is to deliver seamless and quality experiences for our guests at on-brand properties. Today’s traveller demands authentic, personalised and transformative experiences, whether for work or for pleasure, as a way of broadening their individual horizons and achieving a deeper understanding of the world,” Smith said.

Current major pipelines in play with Marriott include more than 300 hotels coming to China and 50 more anticipated to open in India in coming years. The company is also expecting to triple its pipeline in the Philippines by 2023, a process led by the recent opening of Sheraton Manila.

Marriott International will open 30 of these hotels in China this year including the country’s first JW Marriott in Shanghai and the first Renaissance in Xiamen. Additionally, the first St. Regis in Hong Kong will open its doors in the Wanchai district.

“The breadth and depth of Marriott International’s footprint means that we are able to offer travellers opportunities to experience more destinations, brands and experiences, especially through Marriott Bonvoy, our industry-leading travel program,” Smith added.