Marriott International has delivered its fifth hotel in Western Australia with the opening of Courtyard by Marriott Perth, Murdoch, marking the brand’s entry into the state.  

Developed in partnership with Western Australian property developer Hesperia, the 150-key hotel is set within the Murdoch Health and Knowledge Precinct, in Perth’s fastest-growing urban catchment.

Speaking exclusively to HM, Marriott International Area Vice President Australia, New Zealand and Pacific, Sean Hunt, said the precinct will offer an invaluable resource to the wider community.

“We’re very excited to partner with Hesperia,” Hunt said, acknowledging Hesperia leaders Adrian Fini and Ben Lisle for their efforts to bring the hotel to fruition.

Sean Hunt, Marriott International

“The Murdoch Health and Knowledge Precinct is positioned to become the Southern Corridor’s home to health research, medical care, higher education, innovative business development and Hesperia is laser focused on delivering economic benefits for all of Western Australia, but certainly for the Southern Corridor.”

Located approximately 10 minutes from Perth CBD and 25 minutes from Perth International Airport, Courtyard by Marriott Perth, Murdoch will accommodate the influx of healthcare professionals visiting the Fiona Stanley and St John of God, Murdoch hospitals and Murdoch University, as well as patients who are travelling from regional areas for medical treatments.

“The numbers are quite staggering on any given day, there’s up to nearly 10,000 doctors, nurses and patients all within this facility,” Hunt said.

“You’ll see doctors, nurses and specialists coming here to learn and grow, and if you’re in the unfortunate position that you require a medical procedure, there is now a really beautiful value-driven hotel with a great restaurant available.

“It’s got different drivers to what you’d see in downtown Perth.”

In the hotel’s first week, even without a heavy marketing campaign, occupancy was circa 60% with one night over the weekend hitting 80% occupancy due to compression on the CBD, thanks to the hotel’s close proximity, Hunt shared.  

The Marriott Area VP expects the hotel industry will continue to embrace mixed-use commercial precincts to drive occupancy and ADR.

“I think as cities become more and more congested and there’s not much space to grow, you’re going to see more and more hotels like this in commercial parks and medical precincts,” Hunt said.

“And it’s something quite new to this part of the world – Australia and New Zealand – but it’s very common in the Americas and in Europe.”

“Innovative spaces, intuitive service”

The Courtyard by Marriott brand has over 1300 locations in 60 countries – the largest global footprint among Marriott Bonvoy’s portfolio of over 30 brands – including a presence in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.

The Perth hotel features an open lobby with spaces to work or relax, a 24-hour fitness centre and modern meetings and conference facilities, including the Dampiera Library, a bespoke space geared to cater to small corporate groups and conferences.

Each of the 150 guest rooms – a mix of room types ranging from 28 sqm to 56 sqm – have been designed to maximise space and natural light, and feature plush bedding, flexible workspaces, and floor-to-ceiling windows.

All-day dining venue, Substance Restaurant and Bar, serves as an artisanal cafe and Asian bistro, led by Head Chef Mochsin Fam, with seated dining in a biophilic design inspired setting, and an elevated grab-and-go section.

“Each facility in the hotel is aimed at creating an environment where great things can happen, enabling our guests to focus on productivity, or simply relax,” said General Manager, James Illing.

“Connecting travellers through comfortable and innovative spaces, intuitive service and a commitment to personal fulfilment is at the foundation of what we offer at Courtyard by Marriott Perth, Murdoch and we look forward to welcoming guests to experience this.”

Marriott’s expansion plans

Hunt said Western Australia is an important market for Marriott with several more hotels signed in the state, however, he admitted, “getting them out of the ground is not easy”.

“It’s tough because you’re competing for resources against, not just the mining sector over here but infrastructure.

“Government infrastructure is taking a lot of subcontractors and a lot of fuel out of the construction industry.

Elsewhere in the Australia Pacific region, Marriott is experiencing strong growth.

“I think we’ve done a reasonably good job of growing in the last six or seven years,” Hunt said.

“We’ve grown to about 47 hotels this year and about 24 in the pipeline, but we don’t celebrate signings, we celebrate openings.

“I think there’s going to become more of a focus on conversions as owners look to their assets and say ‘is the current brand or current use the highest and best use of my asset? Or am I better deploying some capital and then renovating, repositioning?’ And that’s something that there will be winners and losers on.

“We’re the largest operator now in the Pacific Islands. We just opened a hotel last week in Papua New Guinea and that’s the first of three that will have going into Port Moresby – amounting to 700-800 rooms.

“We’ve got over 1000 rooms in Fiji, so again, that creates critical mass; that creates the opportunity for us to bid on destinational MICE business, and it also provides career opportunities for our people.”