Earlier this week, Marriott India celebrated the opening of their 100th hotel in India, cutting the ribbon for Sheraton Grand Bengaluru Whitefield Hotel & Convention Center.
With a hundred hotels, Marriott is the largest hotel chain in India in terms of footprint. In comparison, peers such as Hyatt and IHG only have 29 and 37 hotels each under management in the country.
Marriott had already taken the lead from Taj Hotels in 2016, and become India’s largest hotel company after the completing the Marriott-Starwood merger. Marriott, along with Starwood & Ritz Carlton portfolios, has more than 20,000 rooms across 15 brands.
Marriott India’s Growth Strategy
Marriott has the second most number of hotels and rooms in India after China and over the next few years, the hotel company expects to open more than 50 new hotels and and have more than 30,000 rooms. That is a 50% Jump in inventory!
Marriott has a two-fold strategy for India. Firstly, focus on gaining the middle-class market share by increasing its footprint of select-service brands like Four Points by Sheraton and Courtyard by Marriott in Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities like Ahmedabad and Bhopal. Secondly, work on growing Marriott’s upscale brands in metropolitan cities for the affluent, high spenders. For instance, after Ritz-Carlton Bengaluru, there are three more Ritz-Carlton hotels under development in Pune, Mumbai and New Delhi. There is a W Mumbai in the works as well.
It’s interesting to see Marriott’s ambitious growth plans in India, which has left the Taj Hotels far behind. Where other hotel chains such as Radisson are focusing on growing their reach in the mid-scale market, Marriott India is not keeping its eye off the high spenders. The chain’s last three hotel openings: Sheraton Grand in Bengaluru, JW Marriott in Jaipur and Le Meridien in Goa are all upscale brands where an average room nights costs higher than INR 9,000 a night.