"Marriott's meaningful growth momentum across its portfolio of brands continued in 2018, as hotel owners increasingly turned to Marriott's world-class teams, leading business platforms, unmatched global scale and captivating brands," said Tony Capuano, Marriott's Executive Vice President and Global Chief Development Officer. "With the world's largest pipeline of hotels, a growing loyalty base of 120 million members and a compelling value proposition to our partners, Marriott is positioned to fuel expansion further in 2019."
As of December 31, 2018, Marriott's global footprint grew to more than 6,900 properties and more than 1.3 million rooms in 130 countries and territories, with Marriott brands making their debut in Finland, New Zealand, Lithuania, Mali and Ukraine. The pipeline also grew to a record 478,000 rooms.
The year also delivered a new record for organic international room signings in Europe and Middle East and Africa, and for organic hotel signings in Asia Pacific, delivering a source of future growth in destinations where international travel is surging, and residents are increasingly joining Marriott's unified loyalty program.
In the industry's highest tier, Marriott's already leading luxury portfolio - consisting of brands such as The Ritz-Carlton, St. Regis, JW Marriott and EDITION - made remarkable strides in 2018. The company signed 29 luxury properties consisting of 6,200 rooms across six brands, with visionary projects such as The Ritz-Carlton, Shanghai Hongqiao, a St. Regis in Dubai, and a three-brand luxury project in the Dominican Republic.
According to the latest STR data, Marriott's luxury pipeline is larger than its next three competitors combined.
In 2018, Marriott's hotel owners began to see even greater benefits with growing loyalty program membership, which now stands at 120 million members around the world, reduced charge out rates, higher luxury redemptions and a growing proportion of bookings from our direct channels.
"Marriott's owners are benefiting from a growing base of affluent, global loyalty members seeking travel experiences of a lifetime in sought-after destinations," said Stephanie Linnartz, Global Chief Commercial Officer, Marriott International. "Our loyalty members benefit in turn from an increasing number of Marriott properties around the globe, as our owners continue to develop exciting projects in gateway cities, resort areas, and locations where our customers aspire to travel."
Note on forward-looking statements: This news release contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of federal securities laws, including the number of properties the company may add in future years, potential increases in the size, strength or benefits of the company's loyalty program and similar statements concerning possible future events or expectations that are not historical facts. We caution you that these statements are not guarantees of future performance and are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties, including changes in market conditions; changes in global and regional economies; supply and demand changes for hotel rooms; competitive conditions in the lodging industry; relationships with clients and property owners; consumer sentiment; the availability of capital to finance growth and refurbishment; and other risk factors that we identify in our most recent annual report on Form 10-K or quarterly report on Form 10-Q. Any of these factors could cause actual results to differ materially from the expectations we express or imply here. We make these statements as of the date of this press release, and we assume no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
About Marriott International, Inc.
Marriott International, Inc. (NASDAQ: MAR) is based in Bethesda, Maryland, USA, and encompasses a portfolio of more than 7,000 properties in 30 leading hotel brands spanning 132 countries and territories. Marriott operates and franchises hotels and licenses vacation ownership resorts all around the world. The company now offers one travel program, Marriott Bonvoy™, replacing Marriott Rewards®, The Ritz-Carlton Rewards®, and Starwood Preferred Guest®(SPG). For more information, please visit our website at www.marriott.com, and for the latest company news, visit www.marriottnewscenter.com. In addition, connect with us on Facebook and @MarriottIntl on Twitter and Instagram.