Marriott Launches Apartments by Marriott Bonvoy, a New Brand Concept

 

Marriott will soon launch a new brand: Apartments by Marriott Bonvoy. Set to become Marriott’s 32nd brand after the City Express deal closes, Apartments by Marriott Bonvoy will add fully serviced apartments to the available types of accommodations in Canada and the United States under the Marriott umbrella.

Demand for this style of tourist lodging has strengthened, as demonstrated by the success of Airbnb. Marriott clearly forecasts that apartment-style short-term accommodation will retain its popularity post-pandemic, especially as there are more leisure travellers now than ever before.

Let’s take a look at what Marriott’s newest brand will look like.

Apartments by Marriott Bonvoy

This new brand concept is in the very first stage of development, where Marriott Bonvoy has announced the intention to design and build Apartments by Marriott Bonvoy from the ground up. Developers have also been invited to learn more about the Apartments by Marriott Bonvoy brand and submit proposals.

Apartments by Marriott Bonvoy will aim to tap into the upper-upscale and luxury markets, and will be distinctly different from Marriott’s current extended-stay brands, such as Residence Inn and TownePlace Suites. The biggest difference is that Apartments by Marriott Bonvoy will not offer traditional hotel services, such as food and beverage outlets, meeting spaces, and retail stores.

Rather, guests will be offered daily housekeeping services, as well as the following guaranteed amenities:

  • Separate living room and bedroom
  • Full kitchen
  • In-unit washer and dryer

As for the brand’s positioning in the upscale and luxury segments, I’d imagine we can expect Apartments by Marriott Bonvoy to follow a design-forward approach, similar to the Autograph Collection and Tribute Portfolio brands.

Apartments by Marriott Bonvoy will first launch in US and Canada. Notably, Marriott Executive Apartments is a similar concept that already exists in 16 countries, but not in North America.

Will Apartments Integrate with Marriott Bonvoy?

In terms of Marriott Bonvoy elite benefits at these new apartments, Marriott hasn’t yet made any official announcements at this point. However, I’d imagine that elite benefits will be available: this is a brand fully managed by Marriott and with “Marriott Bonvoy” in the name, rather than something like Homes and Villas by Marriott, where Marriott acts primarily as a marketing channel.

Free breakfast is likely off the table here, given the nature of the apartment concept and that these buildings will not have food and beverage outlets. Of course, it would be great to receive an upgrade to a larger apartment or one with a better view as a perk for having elite status.

Will upgrades to larger rooms be a part of Apartments by Marriott Bonvoy?

It should be possible to earn and redeem points, as well as accrue elite qualifying nights, for stays at Apartments by Marriott Bonvoy. Having elite nights count towards earning status during the year, as well as towards lifetime status thresholds, would be great for staying in luxurious apartment-style accommodation typically not offered by traditional hotel brands.

Given that more spacious accommodations with full kitchens and in-unit laundry are driven by the blending of work and leisure travel, it’s likely that Marriott is seeing larger groups travelling together in the context of post-pandemic remote work. Therefore, booking Apartments by Marriott Bonvoy could be an excellent opportunity to rack up elite nights and split the accommodation cost between friends and family. 

What’s more, the in-unit washer and dryer is a great inclusion, and could very well be enough reason to book a stay at Apartments by Marriott Bonvoy even for one night just to do all your laundry. Indeed, it’s not uncommon to see laundry services begin at $10 per shirt, and going up from there.

Conclusion

Apartments by Marriott Bonvoy is Marriott’s newest hotel brand concept, and is already looking for prospective developers to either build new properties or convert existing ones.

Design-forward boutique apartments with daily housekeeping and in-unit laundry will be popular for families and groups of friends travelling together, especially if they desire a more luxurious option than what Marriott’s existing long-term stay brands have to offer.

As a fully integrated brand of Marriott Bonvoy, we should be able to accrue elite qualifying nights, as well as earn and redeem points. I anticipate this brand to be popular with Marriott loyalists, and maybe even draw Airbnb loyalists back into the hotel game.

 

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