Marriott International Redefines the Luxury Landscape

The brand has a strong pipeline of one-of-a-kind hotels and resorts set to debut in 2024.

Marriott International, Inc. has announced its milestone 500th luxury hotel opening, bolstering its position as a leader in luxury. Featuring a portfolio of luxury hotel brands, The Ritz-Carlton, St. Regis Hotels & Resorts, W Hotels, The Luxury Collection, EDITION, JW Marriott and Bulgari Hotels & Resorts, Marriott has been pushing the boundaries of experiential travel and reimagining the future of luxury.

Marking Marriott’s 500th luxury property with The St. Regis Riyadh, the company’s formidable portfolio now spans 69 countries and territories with five new hotels slated to open in the final weeks of 2023 in coveted and emerging destinations around the globe. Over 200 luxury hotels and resorts across Marriott’s luxury portfolio are in the global development pipeline, including 24 properties expected to open in 2024.

“The debut of The St. Regis Riyadh as our 500th luxury hotel stands as a momentous milestone for Marriott International, underscoring our mission to bring unparalleled access to the most exclusive destinations and farthest reaches of the world,” noted Tina Edmundson, President of Luxury at Marriott International. “Our luxury portfolio is complemented by truly exceptional guest experiences, allowing us to set the standard for the future of indulgent travel, while continuously innovating and blazing new trails.

As the hospitality industry continues to see unprecedented demand for travel and personalized experiences, Marriott is uniquely poised to not only anticipate trends forecasted in the luxury space, but to define them as well. Jenni Benzaquen, Senior Vice President of The Ritz-Carlton and St. Regis Hotel & Resorts, shares: “We are expanding the reaches of our portfolio to what we have coined ‘nu-luxury frontiers’ – boundary-breaking escapes that combine guests’ desires for authenticity, adventure, and exclusivity. We are consistently pushing the limits, and ourselves, to go beyond star ratings to offer truly transformative experiences and unbridled access that long outlast a traveler’s itinerary. While 2023 saw increased demand to revisit the beloved luxury destinations that travelers had long missed, guests are now focusing on new destinations, ethical escapes and a desire to champion social practices so that travel remains sustainable for generations to come.”

Here’s a look at what’s going on in some of Marriott’s luxury brands.

Ritz-Carlton
In 2023, The Ritz-Carlton expanded its footprint in North America, with the opening of The Ritz-Carlton, Portland, the brand’s first property in the Pacific Northwest, created as a celebration of the vibrant city. This year also saw the debut of The Ritz-Carlton, Melbourne, the tallest hotel in Australia, and The Ritz-Carlton, Fukuoka in Japan, each property embodying a modern aesthetic reflective of this legacy brand. The exclusive Ritz-Carlton Reserve portfolio introduced its sixth intimate retreat with Rissai Valley, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve, in Mainland China, created to reflect its Tibetan culture and honor the magnificent region of Jiuzhaigou, a valley on the edges of the Qinghai-Tibet plateau. In the year ahead The Ritz-Carlton will celebrate the expansion of The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection, with the expected debut of its second newbuilt superyacht, Ilma, slated to set sail in the second half of 2024. Ritz-Carlton Reserve is also expected to open two properties next year – Nujuma, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve in the Red Sea, and  Nekajui, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve on the Papagayo Peninsula in Costa Rica, each offering a distinct and truly immersive getaway.

St. Regis
The vanguard spirit and pronounced glamour of St. Regis redefine the best addresses around the world in the most highly desired luxury destinations. 2023 saw the opening of two architecturally significant debuts with The St. Regis Chicago, designed by famed Jeanne Gang Studio marking this extraordinary property as the tallest building in the world designed by a female architect, and The St. Regis Kanai Resort, in Mexico’s Riviera Maya, a celestial-inspired, enchanting marvel designed by Edmonds International. In the year ahead St. Regis anticipates focused growth across its resort portfolio including openings in the most coveted leisure destinations from Los Cabos to Cap Cana in the Dominican Republic to Florida’s exclusive Longboat Key.

W Hotels
2023 saw significant momentum towards W Hotels ambitious new chapter, marked by sophisticated yet playful design, elevated cultural programming, and a bold new visual identity to meet the wants and needs of a new generation of brand loyalists. W Hotels continued its vast global expansion into new destinations this year including the highly anticipated debut of W Budapest, showcasing the evolved design ethos of the brand through inviting, yet unexpected juxtapositions and materiality. Other highlights included W’s third outpost in Australia, W Sydney overlooking Darling Harbour; W Macau – Studio City; and W Edinburgh, marking the second W hotel in the United Kingdom, and the second in Europe to have the brand’s signature Sound Suite professional recording studio. 2024 will see W Hotels further transport its signature “Whatever/Whenever” service culture to new destinations, including the expected opening of W Prague as well as anticipated North American milestones: the striking transformations of W New York – Union Square, W Hollywood, W Austin, and W New Orleans – French Quarter.

EDITION Hotels 
In 2023, EDITION Hotels extended its influence as a leading global luxury lifestyle brand, introducing its first hotels in Italy, Singapore, and Mexico, and elevating its presence in Japan with a second location in Tokyo. The Rome EDITION officially debuted in July, while The Singapore EDITION and The Riviera Maya EDITION at Kanai opened in preview in November, with The Tokyo EDITION, Ginza similarly launching in preview in mid-December. These strategic expansions pave the way for the brand to venture into new territories, showcasing EDITION’s innovative and unparalleled approach to curating distinctive, personalized experiences that authentically embody the essence of each location. Building on its existing portfolio of 19 hotels across global destinations like New York, Barcelona, Iceland, Tokyo, and Dubai, EDITION Hotels expects to launch into another new market next year. Looking ahead to 2024, EDITION is slated to venture into Saudi Arabia with the anticipated opening of The Jeddah EDITION along the Jeddah Corniche. EDITION Hotels continue to redefine traditional luxury, offering a lifestyle that harmoniously marries local culture with global innovation.

The Luxury Collection
With a global footprint of nearly 115 hotels, The Luxury Collection continues to extend its reach to the most distinct destinations around the world. In 2023, the brand spotlighted the lush ancient Japanese gardens and traditional wellness offerings in the radiant destination of Nara with the opening of Shisui and made its debut in Georgia with the opening of Paragraph Freedom Square in Tbilisi. Serving as an entry point for discovery and a lens into the unique culture of each locale, The Luxury Collection anticipates the debut of properties next year in some of the most sought-after cultural capitals, including Madrid, Spain; Munich, Germany; Nice, France; Isla Mujeres, Mexico; Labuan, Indonesia; and Sindalah, Saudi Arabia.

JW Marriott
Inspired by J. Willard “J.W.” Marriott’s approach to life and holistic well-being, JW Marriott is a haven designed to allow discerning, mindful travelers to focus on feeling whole – present in mind, nourished in body, and revitalized in spirit. In 2023, the brand continued its impressive expansion into dynamic destinations including its highly anticipated debut in the luxury safari lodge segment with JW Marriott Masai Mara Lodge in Kenya. This year also saw the opening of JW Marriott Jeju Resort & Spa, a breath-taking property perched on a cliffside in Jeju Island, South Korea by legendary designer Bill Bensley; JW Marriott Madrid, which marked the brand’s entry into Spain; and JW Marriott Dallas Arts District. Rooted in nature and the Marriott family tradition, JW Marriott’s partnership with world-renowned landscape designer Lily Kwong grew in 2023 with the debut of her latest JW Garden at JW Marriott Hotel Singapore South Beach. In 2024, the brand is slated to debut in Nairobi and Auckland.

Any thoughts, opinions, or news? Please share them with me at vince@meetingsevents.com.

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