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. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Just days after announcing its new unified loyalty program with SPG, Marriott is tackling another frontier. The world’s largest hotel chain officially entered the homesharing market on April 23, launching a six-month partnership with Hostmaker, a London-based home rental management company.

“Hostmaker already does an incredible job of curating a great portfolio of homes,” said Marriott Chief Customer Experience Officer Adam Malamut. “Within that portfolio, we added other types of design, safety and security criteria that meet our standards.”

Tribute Portfolio Homes allow travelers to book homestays with hotel perks and service quality.

The companies worked together to handpick each of the more than 200 homes across London that will be participating in the pilot, which are available for booking at TributePortfolioHomes.com at an average nightly rate of $280-$350. Each home features at least one bedroom and is equipped with a full kitchen and laundry facilities, as well as meeting Marriott hotel standards for safety, design, security and service. Guests who book Tribute Portfolio homes will also receive additional hotel-like services and amenities, such as 24/7 dedicated phone support and an in-person check-in/welcome experience.

But perhaps the most appealing reason to choose a Marriott homeshare over competitors such as Airbnb and Homeaway is the ability to earn Marriott Rewards points on each stay, which no doubt will be attractive to travelers who are recalculating their plans after the Marriott-SPG loyalty program update. And beginning in May 2018, travelers can redeem points for homestays as well.

While Marriott certainly isn’t the first major hospitality company to dip its toes into the sharing economy or professionally managed home rentals, this homeshare endeavor differs from competitors such as Wyndham or Choice Hotels, which have both participated in the vacation rental market for years.

Marriott is using its own existing brand, Tribute Portfolio, to market the available homestays, rather than using Hostmaker’s existing brand or creating a new brand. And while these same homes are also available for bookings via other sites such as Hostmaker’s own website or Airbnb, Marriott promises “an exclusive experience” for guests who book through TributePortfolioHomes.com.

Marriott and Hostmaker chose to launch the pilot program in London because they felt the market was “conducive to learning quickly and complementary to our hotel inventory,” according to Skift.com. If the pilot is successful, Marriott may consider expanding into other markets.

This isn’t Marriott’s first time evaluating the homeshare market. CEO Arne Sorenson has often mentioned the hotel chain’s interest in the industry, which even led to a scathing open letter from Airbnb last fall.

“We’ve been thinking about this for a while, and how this type of business affects ours,” Malamut said. “Timing is about finding the right partner to bring an idea to life that makes sense for our business. That’s what we’re offering here.”

Featured image courtesy of TributePortfolioHomes.com.

The Platinum Card® from American Express

The American Express Platinum card has some of the best perks out there: cardholders enjoy the best domestic lounge access (Delta SkyClubs, Centurion Lounges, and Priority Pass), a $200 annual airline fee credit as well as up to $200 in Uber credits, and mid-tier elite status at SPG, Marriott, and Hilton. Combined with the 60,000 point welcome offer -- worth $1,140 based on TPG's valuations -- this card is a no-brainer for frequent travelers. Here are 5 reasons you should consider this card, as well as how you can figure out if the $550 annual fee makes sense for you.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
  • Enjoy Uber VIP status and free rides in the U.S. up to $15 each month, plus a bonus $20 in December. That can be up to $200 in annual Uber savings.
  • 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel.
  • 5X Membership Rewards points on prepaid hotels booked on amextravel.com.
  • Enjoy access to the Global Lounge Collection, the only credit card airport lounge access program that includes proprietary lounge locations around the world.
  • Receive complimentary benefits with an average total value of $550 with Fine Hotels & Resorts. Learn More.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit, up to $200 per calendar year in baggage fees and more at one qualifying airline.
  • Get up to $100 in statement credits annually for purchases at Saks Fifth Avenue on your Platinum Card®. Enrollment required.
  • $550 annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Intro APR on Purchases
N/A
Regular APR
N/A
Annual Fee
$550
Balance Transfer Fee
See Terms
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

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.