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Marriott aims to double footprint in the Caribbean, LatAm by ’17

Su Casa, the original plantation hacienda at the Dorado resort, is being renovated to its original 1920s style. (Credit: © Mauricio Pascual)

The $340 million Ritz-Carlton Reserve slated to open in Dorado in December is one more than 70 hotel properties Marriott International is developing in the Caribbean and the Latin American region that will double its footprint and create 14,000 jobs in the next five years, company CEO Arne Sorenson said this weekend during the Americas CEO Summit in Cartagena, Colombia that ended Sunday.

Heralding a “golden age of travel,” Sorenson said the company also said it expects to double its presence in Colombia with the additions of Marriott hotels in both Cartagena and Cali.

 The JW Marriott in Cusco, Peru and the Courtyard by Marriott at Mexico City Airport are also in the pipeline of hotel openings through 2017.

The Ritz-Carlton Reserve is a 115-key oceanfront hotel and residences that will be the centerpiece of the renovation of the Dorado Beach Resort. It will be the first of its kind in the Americas and the second under the luxury brand in Puerto Rico.

The investment also includes developing the luxury West Beach and East Beach Ritz-Carlton Reserve branded residences.

“Latin America is booming, in terms of economic growth and political and institutional stability, which is creating a promising business climate,” said Sorenson. “The rising middle class throughout the region is eager to travel to new places and do business on the road. Worldwide, we’re seeing a golden age of travel, and Latin America is at the forefront.”

“This, when combined with the strong performance and preference of our brands in the gateway markets, provides tremendous opportunity for Marriott’s world class brands and service,” he added.

Currently, Marriott has 35 hotels signed and under development in the Caribbean and Latin America.  These include The Ritz-Carlton, Aruba, The Ritz-Carlton, Panama City (Panama), JW Marriott Cusco (Peru), Port-au-Prince Marriott Hotel (Haiti) and the Renaissance Santiago (Chile).

By 2017, Marriott envisions its portfolio in the region rising to more than 140 hotels and 30,000 rooms either opened or in the development pipeline.

At present, Marriott International is represented with 69 hotels in 25 countries in the Caribbean and Latin America. Nine of Marriott’s 18 brands are currently represented in the region:  The Ritz-Carlton and JW Marriott (luxury); Marriott Hotels & Resorts (upscale); Renaissance Hotels and Autograph Collection (lifestyle); Courtyard by Marriott (upper moderate); Marriott Executive Apartments and Residence Inn by Marriott (extended stay); and Fairfield by Marriott (moderate).

“This is an exciting time for hotel development in Latin America; the growing regional demand and broadening market, combined with the lack of consistent domestic hotel product and service, represents a large opportunity to develop upscale branded hotels as well as multi-unit moderate tier development platforms with local partners in the region,” said Laurent De Kousemaeker, chief development officer, Caribbean and Latin American Region, for Marriott International.

The sprawling Dorado Ritz-Carlton Reserve property is located on 1,400 acres in Dorado, and features 100 guestrooms and 14 one-bedroom suites, all directly on the beach, plus Su Casa, the original plantation hacienda renovated back to its original 1920s style to serve as a five-bedroom beachfront VIP villa, perfect for weddings and private parties.

Author Details
Author Details
Business reporter with 27 years of experience writing for weekly and daily newspapers, as well as trade publications in Puerto Rico. My list of former employers includes Caribbean Business, The San Juan Star, and the Puerto Rico Daily Sun, among others. My areas of expertise include telecommunications, technology, retail, agriculture, tourism, banking and most other segments of Puerto Rico’s economy.

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