SAO PAULO—Marriott International expects a 75% increase in Caribbean and Latin American distribution between now and 2018, including a tripling of the company’s presence in Brazil with the addition of 11 new hotels there.
“The northern part of our region is enjoying strong performance while the southern is faced with an economic slowdown, caused largely by the downfall of commodity prices and consequent devaluation;” stated Laurent de Kousemaeker, chief development officer of the Caribbean and Latin America for Marriott, “Notwithstanding, there remains a strong opportunity for quality brand experiences in the sector, and savvy investors with a long-term perspective are taking advantage of the reduced price of assets, land and construction to acquire, develop and brand hotels.”
Marriott has 93 hotels open and more than 60 hotels under development in the Caribbean and Latin America, including 11 new hotels across six cities in Brazil, according to the company. Marriott has plans to invest approximately $400 million Brazilian Reais ($100 million) in Brazil to launch Courtyard by Marriott, Residence Inn by Marriott, Faifield Inn by Marriott and AC by Marriott. Seven of the 11 planned hotels are under construction and will be owned by Marriott or Brazilian partners. Over time, Marriott expects to sell its owned hotel assets, retaining long-term management agreements, according to the lodging chain.
“Brazil’s economy, while it confronts structural and policy challenges, is still in the top eight largest economies in the world and has excellent long-term prospects,” said Tim Sheldon, who was named president of Marriott’s Caribbean and Latin American region in May. “The lack of reliable domestic hotel product and services represents a large opportunity for our moderate-tier brands, which we have adapted to the tastes of the Brazilian travelers.”
Year to date, Marriott has opened eight hotels in the Caribbean and Latin America, with another nine expected by year’s end.