Marriott International, Inc. is a leading global lodging company with more than 7,600 properties in 133 countries and territories. The company that began in 1927 as a nine-seat A&W root beer stand in Washington, DC is recognized today as a top employer and for our superior business operations. We continuously create extraordinary experiences for our guests, generate strong economic returns for our owners and franchisees, and provide outstanding career opportunities for our associates. In 2016, Marriott acquired Starwood Hotels & Resorts, making us the largest and most global lodging company in the world.

Marriott Hotels & Resorts Franchise Opportunities – History

The Marriott story began in 1927 when founders J. Willard and Alice Marriott opened an A&W root beer franchise in Washington, D.C. They instilled their knowledge of business and leadership into their son, Bill, who opened the first Marriott motor hotel in Arlington, Virginia in 1957. Marriott expanded swiftly, and in 1969, opened its first international hotel in Acapulco. By the late 80’s, the hotel company opened its 500th location and began expanding into Europe. Marriott continued to grow and eventually opened alternative lodging brands catering to different levels of affordability and travel type. In 2016, Marriott acquired Starwood Hotels, itself the parent of a global portfolio of well-known hotel brands, forming the largest hotel and resort chain in the world. Today, Marriott International continues its mission of shaping the future of travel experiences through technology and innovation, boasting over 6,000 worldwide units.

Besides its sheer scale, one of the Marriott’s most distinctive competitive advantages is its suite of loyalty programs (Marriott Rewards, Starwood Preferred Guest, and The Ritz-Carlton Rewards) with some 120 million members worldwide. The company recently announced that its various programs would be merged over time.

Marriott Hotels & Resorts Franchise Cost / Initial Investment / Marriott Hotels & Resorts Franchise Income

No one said owning a large, luxury hotel franchise would be a low cost affair. Opening a newly built, 300 room Marriott hotel requires an investment of $67 million to $105 million. That cost is inclusive of the franchise application fee, construction, training, systems, initial supplies, opening day marketing, and more, but does not include the cost of the actual real estate on which the hotel will be located. The investment range is determined by the hotel’s location, guest room configurations, amenities, and specific build out. The royalties paid by a franchisee in the Marriott system vary.

Overview of Marriott International’s Franchised Hotel Brands

Marriott is the 10,000 lbs king kong gorilla of the hotel and resort space, with more properties and “expressions” (brands) than any other player in the industry. It can be quite a feat to navigate and categorize the company’s huge (and constantly evolving) portfolio of hotel chains.

For investors interested in opening a Marriott franchise, the first question is which one? What people often mean by “Marriott Hotels & Resorts” is any of Marriott, JW Marriott, or possibly Marriott Executive Apartments. But the parent company portfolio extends far beyond that.

Here’s a breakdown of the Marriott International portfolio by tier and class, with the brands that leverage the Marriott name directly emphasized: 

Luxury Brands

  • St. Regis Hotels & Resorts (“Classic” designation)
  • The Ritz-Carlton (“Classic” designation)
  • JW Marriott (“Classic” designation)
  • Edition (“Distinctive” designation)
  • The Luxury Collection (“Distinctive” designation)
  • W Hotels (“Distinctive” designation)
  • Bulgari Hotels & Resorts (“Distinctive” designation)

Upper Upscale Brands

  • Marriott (“Classic” designation)
  • Delta Hotels by Marriott (“Classic” designation)
  • Sheraton (“Classic” designation)
  • Marriott Executive Apartments (“Classic” designation)
  • Autograph Collection Hotels (“Distinctive” designation)
  • Le Meridien (“Distinctive” designation)
  • Tribute Portfolio (“Distinctive” designation)
  • Westin Hotels & Resorts (“Distinctive” designation)
  • Renaissance Hotels (“Distinctive” designation)
  • Gaylord Hotels (“Distinctive” designation)

Upscale Brands

  • Courtyard by Marriott (“Classic” designation)
  • Four Points by Sheraton (“Classic” designation)
  • Springhill Suites by Marriott (“Classic” designation)
  • Residence Inn by Marriott (“Classic” designation)
  • AC Hotels by Marriott (“Distinctive” designation)
  • aloft Hotels (“Distinctive” designation)
  • element by Westin (“Distinctive” designation)

Upper Midscale Brands

  • Protea Hotels by Marriott (“Classic” designation)
  • Fairfield by Marriott (“Classic” designation)
  • Towneplace Suites by Marriott (“Classic” designation)
  • Moxy Hotels (“Distinctive” designation)

Every brand has its own target demographic, price band, development roadmap, and brand promise, but the portfolio is unified by Marriott International’s buying power, loyalty programs, technology systems, and operational experience. As a potential franchisee, you’ll want to examine all these factors to determine which Marriott brand might be a fit for your investment criteria.

If you want to become a Franchisor for one of the Marriott Hotels Brands, call us now.