Marriott's Collections brands are growing -- and there's more to come in the future
Marriott is celebrating the momentum of its portfolio of independent hotels that fall under its "Collections" brands.
Today, the world's largest hotel chain is announcing the opening of its 200th Autograph Collection, 120th Luxury Collection and 50th Tribute Portfolio hotels in locales around the globe.
And, Marriott is excited for the future growth potential of each of these Collections brands, with plans to open almost 70 new properties in 24 new markets worldwide this year alone.
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According to a press release from the chain, its research into TripAdvisor search data has revealed a significant uptick in searches for properties that contain words like "boutique" and "quaint" in their descriptions, indicating travelers are seeking unique, memorable experiences more than a cookie-cutter stay experience that could be replicated anywhere.
“More than ever, guests are seeking to immerse themselves in the richness of the locale, to discover what defines the destination and to experience one-of-a-kind hotels. This has become increasingly important over the past year, as those who are waiting to travel are counting down the days until they make memories on the road again," said Tina Edmundson, global brand and marketing officer at Marriott.
Let's take a look at some of the most exciting properties that are set to open this year under these three portfolio brands:
Started in 2010 with just seven hotels, the Autograph Collection has grown now to encompass 200 hotels around the world, each of them "hand-selected for their inherent craft and distinct perspectives on design and hospitality," according to Marriott. They maintain their independence, but their affiliation with Marriott and its Bonvoy loyalty program allows guests to earn and redeem points for stays, receive elite benefits during a visit and more.
The brand's 200th hotel is the Grand Universe Lucca, Autograph Collection located in a restored 16th Century palazzo in Lucca, Italy. The 55-room property is set in Tuscany below the Apuan Alps and just a 30-minute drive from the Versilia Coast, which is filled with seaside resorts and endless nightclubs and bars to dance away those long summer nights.
Back in the United States, the highly anticipated Cloudveil, Autograph Collection will open in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, giving travelers a luxurious yet attainable ski resort at which you can redeem and earn points in one of the country's most exclusive ski destinations, and somewhere that doesn't yet have a wide variety of desirable points properties.
Elsewhere, Autograph Collection plans to open 48 hotels worldwide this year, with locations in cities like Singapore, Seoul, Istanbul and Antwerp, Belgium. And, 19 of them -- in destinations including Mexico, St. Lucia, Jamaica and more -- will be fall under the new All-Inclusive by Marriott International program.
Tribute Portfolio hotels aim to be hubs for guests and visitors alike, with "captivating design" and "vibrant social spaces," as described in a press release from Marriott. Guests at Tribute properties tend to be those who spend the majority of their time outside of their rooms on vacation, but still want a stylish place to lie their head at night.
Tribute's 50th hotel is set to be The Kinley Chattanooga, a Tribute Portfolio Hotel in the midst of Chattanooga, Tennessee's entertainment district. Further afield, Tribute Portfolio will welcome the Hotel Riomar, Ibiza, a Tribute Portfolio Hotel on the party island of Ibiza in Spain and The HIYORI Chapter, a Tribute Portfolio Hotel alongside the Kamo River in Kyoto, Japan.
Other Tribute Portfolio hotels are expected to open this year in Washington, D.C.; Atlanta, Georgia; Seville, Spain and Shenzhen, China.
The Luxury Collection
The Luxury Collection is known for having a slate of marquee luxury properties in amazing destinations around the world including hotels like The Chatwal, a Luxury Collection Hotel in the Upper East Side of Manhattan in New York City.
In 2021, The Luxury Collection will add four new properties. Matild Palace, a Luxury Collection Hotel in Budapest, Hungary will be the collection's 120th property when it opens its doors this spring. The property dates back to 1902 and is now a UNESCO world heritage site. Of course, guests can expect a thoroughly modern and luxurious interior designed by MKV Design studio.
The long-awaited The Tasman, a Luxury Collection Hotel in Hobart, Tasmania is on track to open in the fall of this year. It will have 152 rooms and suites in a historic building in the city's Parliament Square. And in South Korea, the Josun Palace, a Luxury Collection Hotel will open in Seoul in the building built in 1914 that housed one of the city's first hotels and hosted all sorts of important people including royalty.
The future of Marriott's Collections brands
TPG had the opportunity to speak with Jennifer Connell, the VP and global brand leader of Autograph Collection and Tribute Portfolio at Marriott about the milestones hit by each of the collections and what the future looks like for them.
When asked about the differentiation between each of the Collection brands, Connell wanted to reiterate that Marriott isn't simply collecting random properties around the world and integrating them into the Marriott family. In fact, the chain has "developed curation principles and tiered minimum requirements for these brands" so that each prospective property is thoroughly vetted and approved before it can become a part of a Collection brand.
TPG asked also about the future of Marriott's Collections brands and what consumers could expect from the Autograph Collection, Luxury Collection and Tribute Portfolio in the coming years. Connell said that the Collections brands give Marriott flexibility in terms of which markets they can enter, like secondary and even tertiary markets where a full-scale chain property might not make sense.
Additionally, she said there will be a focus on growth in the Caribbean, Latin America or any other strong all-inclusive markets to further grow its recently announced all-inclusive Autograph Collection product.
Finally, she noted that the Tribute Portfolio and Autograph Collection brands have seen impressive growth in the Asia-Pacific region. Luxury Collection has long been an established player there, but now consumers in those markets are becoming increasingly interested in trying out independent, boutique-style properties over some of the more recognizable names in the market.
Marriott's Collections brands have seen impressive growth over the last few years. And it seems they're poised for even more in the next several years, thanks to the market flexibility these brands provide and evolving consumer tastes that seem to favor unique experiences at individually minded hotels.
There's finally a light at the end of the tunnel with regard to the coronavirus pandemic, and travelers are eager to get back out into the world to explore, learn and enrich their lives. With that renewed sense of optimism for a return to travel, many hotel guests will crave memorable experiences in new and fascinating places. And with Marriott's Collections brands, guests can have these experiences while enjoying all the perks and benefits that come along with staying at any other Marriott property.