Marriott’s Arne Sorenson On The Hospitality Business, Government Shutdown

14 October 2013 external

When Marriott International created Courtyard by Marriott in the 1980s, the company had one customer in mind: the business traveler.

The no-frills chain offered a lower-priced option for those traveling for work. Courtyard hotels were mostly in the suburbs in close proximity to business centers, hospitals and highways.

Today, Courtyard’s 900-plus hotels have shifted to accommodate a growing number of leisure travelers and families as well. Most recently, the Bethesda-based company spent nearly $1 billion sprucing up lobbies and adding bistros to keep up with changing demands.

The brand, which turns 30 this week, has evolved throughout the years. The company’s anniversary comes at a time when Washington area hotels are looking for ways to stay relevant in the business world as the government shutdown continues to batter the local hospitality industry.

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