Marriott International Inc. (MAR) plans to double the number of hotels it operates in the Middle East and Africa over the next five years, as it embarks on a major expansion around the globe, according to the company's chief executive.
The hotelier has 48 properties in the pipeline across the Middle East and Africa, on top of the 42 it currently operates and plans to add 130,000 rooms worldwide, Arne Sorenson, president and chief executive of Marriott International told reporters as he officially opened the JW Marriott Marquis, the world's tallest hotel located in Dubai.
"We have 130,000 rooms in our pipeline," said Mr. Sorenson. "Today we have about 660,000 hotel rooms that are open in the system. We manage, essentially franchise all of them."
Mr. Sorenson said the global pipeline of hotels represented real estate worth between $30 billion and $40 billion. The investment by Marriott International through until 2014 would be about $2 billion, added Mr. Sorenson. The company is present in 12 countries in the Middle East and Africa, with 11,500 rooms planned, on top of the 12,000 currently available.
At a height of 355 metres, the JW Marriott Marquis Hotel Dubai is the tallest hotel in the world, according to Guinness World Records and is one of a number of brands in the Marriott International portfolio, including The Ritz-Carlton, Renaissance and Courtyard.
Last week, Marriott International said fourth-quarter profit rose 28% to $181 million as the company reported stronger revenue per available room and higher average daily rates.
Zawya Dow Jones