In September, two of the best-known hotel groups merged to form the world’s largest hotel company. Marriott International acquired Starwood Hotels & Resorts. With these two groups combined, this singular hotel company will have 30 brands between them and over 5,700 hotel properties throughout the world.The merger is seen as mostly positive. Guests will now have a larger portfolio of properties to choose from, each of the brand’s loyalty programs are expected remain intact and be honored by both companies (as of now), and there seems to be more opportunities for guest to earn more airline benefits. Currently, Starwood has a partnership with Delta Airlines, Emirates, and China Eastern, while Marriott partners with United. The crossover of brands provides more opportunities to earn reward points.
Despite these positives, this merger can still prove to be messy. There are several overlapping brands (that target the same customer) that may result in the dissolution of something. Only time will tell.It is predicted that things will stay as they are for now. The experience that one expects at the W or at the Ritz-Carlton will continue to be one that is familiar to patrons. As someone who has been loyal to one of these brands whenever I traveled, it will be a new experience for me to crossover and experience the group. As these two groups begin to assimilate more, it could be interest to see what design style changes will emerge as a new brand identity develops.
A new excuse to embark on a stay away from home…
What is your favorite Marriott or Starwood hotel? Are you excited to hear about this merger? Let me know your thoughts!
Sending you dreamy bliss,