Marriott, Starwood likely to keep luxury brands

Arne Sorenson: “I think generally we intend to keep them all”
When Marriott revealed it would buy Starwood late last year, a lot of questions were raised about the future of the two mega-hotel companies’ roster of competing brands. Marriott owns 20 brands across all sectors, while Starwood has 10.
Interviewed for International Meetings Review, man of the moment Marriott CEO Arne Sorenson hinted that all of the brands would survive.
“In the luxury space, of course, we’ve got Ritz-Carlton, Bulgari, Edition, Autograph, all on the Marriott side. On the Starwood side, we’ve got St. Regis, The Luxury Collection and W, again, a very strong portfolio of brands. I think generally we intend to keep them all,” he said.
“We think the demographics around luxury travel are positive for the long term. We’d like to have as many strong brands to plan in this space as possible and make sure we’re delivering experiences, which are distinct. We’ll work on making sure those brands are defined in a way that one can be sensed to be different than another but still be true to a luxury experience.”
Starwood, for example, is rapidly expanding W. Sometimes credited as being the first “lifestyle” brand stressing design and a contemporary approach, it has been altered recently more towards luxury. The aim is to have 75 W hotels open by 2020 globally.
International Meetings Review / Luxury Travel Advisor