Bolstered by a “Brand + Destination” strategy, Marriott continues its strong expansion as the region’s travel rebounds.
HONG KONG – Marriott International, Inc. announced the highly anticipated opening of its 500th hotel in Greater China – Rissai Valley, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve. The milestone marks Marriott’s long-standing commitment to strengthening its presence in the region since entering the market close to 40 years ago. The company plans to bolster its strong position in Greater China with a total of 47 hotels expected to open in the region in 2023 – adding close to 13,000 guestrooms to the portfolio.
Situated in the southwest of China, Rissai Valley, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve, boasts 87 private villas within a nature reserve, offering immersive experiences that showcase the heritage, culture, and natural splendor of Jiuzhaigou, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a World Biosphere Reserve. The debut of this exceptional property reinforces Marriott’s ability to provide guests with unparalleled hospitality experiences.
“Reaching our 500th hotel in Greater China is a momentous accomplishment for us. It is a testament to the trust placed in Marriott by our owners, franchisees, and guests,” said Yibing Mao, President, Greater China, Marriott International. “With close to 190 hotels planned to open in the region in the next three years, we look forward to further growing our footprint in lockstep with our guests’ evolving needs and preferences in this robust market.”
Guided by its “Brand + Destination” strategy, Marriott continues to tap into emerging trends in the region to drive demand and elevate guest experiences through its diverse portfolio of 31 iconic brands spanning the luxury, premium, and select segments.
Strengthening Marriott’s Position in the Leisure Segment
According to the latest Domestic Tourism Survey by China’s Ministry of Culture and Tourism, domestic leisure travel showed a remarkable recovery in the first quarter of 2023. Driven by the pent-up demand for leisure travel, Marriott is well-positioned to accelerate growth in emerging destinations in the region and offer transformative experiences to more travelers in more locations.
Covering over 30 key leisure destinations with nearly 70 resort properties in the region, Marriott caters to travelers’ growing appetite for diverse vacation options. With rising demand for cultural tourism in historic cities, the company expects to further strengthen its presence in leisure destinations with first-time entries and brand debuts in new markets across its well-established labels in the next few years, including Sheraton Hotels and Resorts, Marriott Hotels, Four Points by Sheraton, and Fairfield by Marriott.
Bisected by the beautiful FuChun River, Fuyang is the very location that inspired the famous Chinese painting Dwelling in the FuChun Mountains. The anticipated opening of Sheraton Hangzhou Fuyang in 2025 will offer a new sense of connectivity and belonging to travelers visiting this part of Hangzhou, while they explore nature’s bounty and a culture steeped in thousands of years of history. Anticipated in 2026, the opening of Marriott Hotels in Yangjiang, a key city on the Maritime Silk Road, and Huzhou, the hometown of Chinese ink brushes including the notable Hubi, dubbed “The Best of All Ink Brushes,” will provide travelers who thrive on rich historical and cultural experiences with more options in the west of Guangdong and around Taihu Lake.
With the expected unveiling in 2024 of Fairfield by Marriott in Lijiang Ancient Town, Yunnan, guests will have the opportunity to immerse themselves in various natural landscapes and ethnic minority customs and traditions. The expected debut of the first Four Points by Sheraton in Xuancheng, Anhui, anticipated to open in 2024, is set to deliver the brand’s timeless classic and modern amenities in the hometown of Xuan Paper with beautiful scenic spots and historical sites.
Placing a Laser-Focus on Luxury Offerings
According to Bain’s 2022 Luxury Report, China has more middle- and high-income consumers than other emerging markets in the world and the number is expected to double by 2030. This demonstrates that China remains an important growth engine for the global luxury goods market.
Marriott aims to deliver unique and meaningful experiences desired by today’s luxury travelers across its unmatched luxury repertoire. Powered by its “Brand + Destination” strategy, the company is focused on expanding its luxury offerings in the region and further developing its brands by growing distribution in popular leisure destinations, as demonstrated by the recent opening of JW Marriott Hotel Xi’an.
Looking ahead, The Ritz-Carlton brand, with its signature services and immersive experiences, is expected to grace more destinations in the local market favored by affluent travelers, including with hotel openings in Suzhou and Wuhan in 2025. The St. Regis brand also anticipates extending its iconic exquisite lifestyle, timeless tradition, and signature services to visitors and locals alike, including in Shenzhen in 2025, setting a new benchmark for luxury hospitality in the Silicon Valley of China.
Expanding Lifestyle Brands for the Next-Gen Travelers
Marriott is well positioned to drive the development of its distinct lifestyle brands in Greater China to better cater to the next generation of travelers. Offering new and authentic playgrounds for travelers to take on a socially charged retreat, W Hotels is expected to expand in Macau in 2023. W Macau – Studio City is anticipated to bring its iconic “Whatever/Wherever” service, elevated design, and regionally-inspired programming to the city. The brand’s signature W Sound Suite will also be introduced, transcending the conventional hotel stay experience with a space that allows musicians and guests to eat, sleep, record and repeat.
Marriott’s Distinctive Select brands offer distinct experiences to younger, cost-conscious travelers. The opening of AC Hotel by Marriott Suzhou at the end of 2022 marked the brand’s debut in Greater China, offering an effortless and elegant experience while celebrating the essence of life. The design driven AC hotels are expected to debut in two distinct leisure destinations in the region in 2024, Hangzhou and Wuhan. Designed by architect Kengo Kuma, AC Hotel by Marriott Wuhan Hanyang will welcome discerning travelers a seamless guest experience. The anticipated unveiling of Moxy Hotels in Ningbo and Qiandao Lake in 2024, is set to enrich travel experiences for millennials with a “Play On” spirit and cultural immersion opportunities at affordable prices.
Offering Greater Flexibility with Complex Hotels and Collection Brands
Capitalizing on its diversified brand portfolio, Marriott offers multi-branded complex properties, featuring differentiated brand positioning or different sensibilities, to provide consumers with a variety of choices at different price ranges in the same location. The juxtaposition of luxury, premium, and/or select brands and combinations of classic and lifestyle experiences meet the unique preference and demands of today’s discerning travelers.
The debuts of Marriott Hotel, Element by Westin hotel, and Four Points by Sheraton Hotel in Guangzhou Baiyun earlier this year further enhanced Marriott’s presence in the Greater Bay Area. The company is also slated to expand in first-tier cities with the planned openings in 2024 of the Beijing Marriott Hotel Huairou and Element Beijing Huairou.
As boutique hotel lovers are also growing in numbers, Tribute Portfolio, one of Marriott’s three sophisticated collection brands, is expected to debut in 2025 in Suzhou, offering a distinctive fusion of local culture and design along with a charming, vibrant social scene.
Delivering Inspiring and Meaningful Travel Experiences through Marriott Bonvoy
With more than 400 hotels in the pipeline in Greater China across luxury, premium, and select brands, Marriott will continue to inspire travelers by delivering memorable travel experiences through Marriott Bonvoy and its’ extraordinary portfolio of 31 hotel brands.
Vicky is the co-founder of TravelDailyNews Media Network where she is the Editor-in Chief. She is also responsible for the daily operation and the financial policy. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Tourism Business Administration from the Technical University of Athens and a Master in Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Wales. She has many years of both academic and industrial experience within the travel industry. She has written/edited numerous articles in various tourism magazines.