Hilton Expands Luxury Hotel Portfolio as It Nears 1 Million Rooms Worldwide

Feb 13, 2019

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Update: Some offers mentioned below are no longer available. View the current offers here – Hilton Honors American Express Ascend Card

One million rooms. That’s what Hilton is marching toward, and per its Q4 2018 earnings report released on Wednesday, it’ll cross that milestone in short order. Last quarter, Hilton swung open the doors of 142 new hotels totaling 22,500 rooms. Looking at 2018 as a whole, it opened more than 450 new hotels totaling more than 66,000 rooms.

All told, that represents a 10% increase from the same period in 2017, and a full 25% of the new rooms opened last year were “conversions from non-Hilton brands.” For passport collectors, you’ll be pleased to know that the chain expanded into eight new countries and territories during 2018.

Hilton Moorea Lagoon Resort and Spa - sitting on overwater bungalow porch
Hilton Moorea Lagoon Resort & Spa. (Photo by Darren Murph / The Points Guy)

Perhaps the most notable statistic is this: Hilton ended 2018 “with more than 913,000 rooms open, operating across 135 countries and territories.” Given that 184,000 more rooms are currently under construction, it’s only a matter of time before the million room mark is crossed (and exceeded). In fact, Hilton announced that its development pipeline contains more than 2,400 new hotels, including properties in “35 countries and territories where Hilton does not currently have any open hotels.”

That’s big news for Hilton loyalists as well as Marriott defectors who are just getting acquainted with the brand, as it means more opportunities for burning points on a more diverse selection of properties. Hilton now lists a whopping 16 brands within its umbrella, including its new budget brand Motto and LXR Hotels & Resorts on the other end of the spectrum.

Hilton Moorea Lagoon Resort and Spa - drinks over the beach
Tough to complain with the views, and the drinks were free thanks to my Diamond status. (Photo by Darren Murph / The Points Guy)

Christopher J. Nassetta, Hilton’s president and CEO, remarked on the brand’s continued expansion of its luxury portfolio, though stopped short of name-dropping any new openings beyond Habtoor Palace Dubai (which opened in late 2018) and The Biltmore, Mayfair (which will open in London Q1 2019). Oddly, he didn’t seize the opportunity to mention that bookings are now possible at the ultra-luxe Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi — perhaps as to not draw attention to the steep award rates that may well become the norm for its most aspirational properties.

On the financial side, a fairly rosy picture is being painted. For last quarter and full-year 2018, RevPAR (revenue per available room) grew 2% and 3%, respectively. The key to that growth? Higher room rates, or “increased ADR (average daily rate).” Given that Hilton is telling investors to expect RevPAR increases between 1% and 3% for full-year 2019, it’s a safe bet that you’ll see room rates push ever higher in the months ahead. Of course, one way to combat higher cash rates is to have a stash of Honors points on hand, as award stays can often be a bargain while cash rates are inflated.

In fact, two of Hilton’s cobranded American Express cards offer complimentary elite status within the program just for holding the card.

  • Hilton Honors American Express Ascend Card ($95 annual fee; complimentary Gold status)(See Rates & Fees)— 125,000 bonus points after you spend $2,000 in purchases on the card within your first 3 months of card membership
  • Hilton Honors Aspire Card from American Express ($450 annual fee; complimentary Diamond status) (See Rates & Fees) — 150,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 in purchases on the card within your first 3 months of card membership

The information for the Hilton Aspire Amex card has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

For more on Hilton’s expansion plans, be sure to listen to our Talking Points podcast, which featured Hilton’s Senior Vice President and Global Head of Customer Engagement, Loyalty and Partnerships Mark Weinstein.


Subscribe, rate and review Talking Points wherever you get your podcasts.


For rates and fees of the Honors Ascend Card, please click here.
For rates and fees of the Honors Aspire Card, please click here.

Featured image of Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi courtesy of Hilton.

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

WELCOME OFFER: 80,000 Points


CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners

*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. Plus earn up to $50 in statement credits towards grocery store purchases within your first year of account opening.
  • Earn 2X points on dining including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out and travel. Plus, earn 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 80,000 points are worth $1,000 toward travel.
  • With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories.
  • Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on eligible orders over $12 for a minimum of one year with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
  • Get up to $60 back on an eligible Peloton Digital or All-Access Membership through 12/31/2021, and get full access to their workout library through the Peloton app, including cardio, running, strength, yoga, and more. Take classes using a phone, tablet, or TV. No fitness equipment is required.
Regular APR
15.99%-22.99% Variable
Annual Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.