By JoAnn DeLuna Ed Fuller, president and managing director of Marriott international lodging, explains why expansion is so important.
Marriott International continues to expand in the UK with new openings such as the Marriott Courtyard at Gatwick and the Marriott Twickenham. Last autumn, it rebranded the Grosvenor House as a JW Marriott, Marriott's five star brand that recently celebrated its 25th anniversary and which will rise from its current 43 properties to over 60 by the end of 2011.
In the last three years, we've seen an explosion of hotel brands, particularly in the luxury sector, but when times are tough and rates come under pressure, how do you maintain a luxury brand such as JW Marriott?
In terms of rates, we're flexible during this economic crisis, because each hotel is trying to deal with the market it is in. As far as JW is concerned, the brand distinguishes itself in terms of quality, design and elegance, but also flawless service. The hotel has been designed for accomplished achievers who have reached a certain status in their career where they are making big decisions in their businesses. So they want to maintain their health, they want to maintain their routine, but they really want to get things done, albeit in a luxury environment.