Element 01/23/2017 – Bethesda, Md.

Marriott’s First-Ever, Pop-Up Innovation Lab Further Evolves Its Cutting Edge Aloft and Element Hotel Brands

Marriott International (NASDAQ: MAR) today will launch its first pop-up hotel innovation lab, creating an interactive model hotel experience in downtown Los Angeles to crowdsource real-time feedback from the public, furthering the company’s futuristic vision.

Underscoring Marriott’s goal of continuously innovating the guest experience with an eye on design and technology, the lab will let industry professionals, hotel guests, associates and the general public see, touch, taste and hear some of the exciting enhancements being considered for the future of the company’s innovation incubator brand Aloft, and eco-conscious, extended-stay brand Element. Among them:

  • With business and leisure travelers looking for more unique spaces, Element is piloting a bold new guest room design that will feature a communal room in the center of four guest rooms, allowing travelers to share a kitchen, dining room and lounge area. This will provide more collaborative space for groups who would like to spend time together in a more private setting.
  • Aloft will be revitalizing its food and beverage program with an emphasis on fresh, healthy ingredients such as spinach, quinoa and avocado. Travelers will be able to order customized “pots,” a healthy meal in a colorful to-go container with food that reflects regional tastes. A personalized pot can be ordered and paid for at a digital kiosk; guests will receive their pot with a time-stamped, label featuring their chef’s emoji.
  • Tech-centric beverage concepts, such as a portable wine cart for Element that automatically pours wine when activated by a guest’s hotel room key card.

“We’re excited to unveil Marriott’s first-ever, pop-up innovation lab for Aloft and Element – two phenomenal brands that are always evolving as guests, lifestyles and technology change,” said Eric Jacobs, Chief Development Officer – North America, Marriott Select Brands, Marriott International. “We’re also eager to collect and utilize feedback from the ownership community, which has expressed tremendous enthusiasm for both brands.”

An interactive model hotel concept in Los Angeles will display the global brands’ futuristic vision, while tapping real-time feedback to inspire company’s famed innovation process

At year-end 2016, there were 116 Aloft and 23 Element hotels open around the world, with 150 Aloft and 73 Element hotels in the pipeline globally.  In 2016, new signings of Elements were more than double 2015 signings, whereas Aloft experienced a 37 percent uptick in signed deals year over year. In 2017, Marriott expects to open 33 Aloft properties and 14 Element properties across the globe in a diverse array of cities such as Seoul, South Korea, Seattle, Washington, and South Bend, Indiana.

Given the importance that Marriott places on incorporating feedback from its hotel owners, franchisees, and loyalty members, every person who passes through the lab will have the opportunity to offer their feedback in real-time through Swurveys, a swipe-able survey. The feedback will be reflected in the Aloft and Element brands as they rollout this intuitive guest experience beginning in the fall of 2017. “Innovation is embedded in Marriott’s values,” said Toni Stoeckl, Global Brand Leader and Vice President, Distinctive Select Brands.  “We’re driven by creating solutions that elevate, innovate and evolve the guest experience, fueling guest loyalty and maximizing the value of our owners’ investments.  It’s how we stay relevant to guests today and tomorrow, while providing a meaningful competitive advantage to our partners.”

The pop-up innovation lab event comes four months after Marriott acquired Starwood Hotels & Resorts, which conceived of the two brands and witnessed an uptick in signings in the months leading up to the merger.

This isn’t the first time that Marriott invited the public to help transform the traditional hotel experience. In October, the company unveiled its first M Beta hotel for its flagship Marriott Hotels brand at Charlotte Marriott City Center, a functioning hotel that doubles as the world’s first hotel in “live beta.” From keyless entry upon arrival to digital experiences in the fitness studio, every corner of the hotel allows for rapid prototyping, inviting guests to test and give feedback in real-time, ultimately shaping their future hotel experience.

Marriott is an innovation leader, ranked 19th on FORTUNE’s list of Most Innovative Companies, and the powerhouse in hospitality innovation.

Marriott International, Inc. (NASDAQ: MAR) is the world’s largest hotel company based in Bethesda, Maryland, USA, with more than 6,000 properties in more than 120 countries and territories. Marriott operates and franchises hotels and licenses vacation ownership resorts. The company’s 30 leading brands include: Bulgari®, The Ritz-Carlton® and The Ritz-Carlton Reserve®, St. Regis®, W®, EDITION®, JW Marriott®, The Luxury Collection®, Marriott Hotels®, Westin®, Le Méridien®, Renaissance® Hotels, Sheraton®, Delta Hotels by MarriottSM, Marriott Executive Apartments®, Marriott Vacation Club®, Autograph Collection® Hotels, Tribute Portfolio™, Design Hotels™, Gaylord Hotels®, Courtyard®, Four Points® by Sheraton, SpringHill Suites®, Fairfield Inn & Suites®, Residence Inn®, TownePlace Suites®, AC Hotels by Marriott®, Aloft®, Element®, Moxy® Hotels, and Protea Hotels by Marriott®. The company also operates award-winning loyalty programs: Marriott Rewards®, which includes The Ritz-Carlton Rewards®, and Starwood Preferred Guest®. For more information, please visit our website at www.marriott.com, and for the latest company news, visit www.marriottnewscenter.com and @MarriottIntl.

About Aloft Hotels
With more than 100 hotels now open in 19 countries around the world, the Aloft brand delivers a fresh approach to the traditional staid hotel landscape. For the ‘always on’ next generation of traveler, the Aloft brand offers a tech-forward, vibrant experience and a modern style that is different by design. Aloft is proud to participate in the industry’s award-winning loyalty program, Starwood Preferred Guest®. Members can now link accounts with Marriott Rewards®, which includes The Ritz-Carlton Rewards® at members.marriott.com for instant elite status matching and unlimited points transfer. For more information, please visit www.alofthotels.com and follow along on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

About Element Hotels
Element® Hotels is made to order for guests in the know and on the go. Its bright design defies convention, bathing guest rooms and public spaces in natural light. Stylish and sustainable throughout, Element offers extended stay comfort with a conscience and lots of signature amenities from its healthy RISE breakfast and RELAX evening reception to saline swimming pools, spacious fitness centers, bikes to borrow and electric vehicle charging stations. Element made history in 2008 as the only major hotel brand to pursue LEED certification for high-performance buildings brand-wide.   Element is proud to participate in the industry’s award-winning loyalty program, Starwood Preferred Guest®. Members can now link accounts with Marriott Rewards®, which includes The Ritz-Carlton Rewards® at members.marriott.com for instant elite status matching and unlimited points transfer. Visit www.ElementHotels.com or connect on Facebook and Instagram.

Note on Forward-Looking Statements: The numbers of Aloft and Element properties that Marriott expects to open in 2017 are “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of U.S. federal securities laws, not historical facts, and are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties, including supply and demand changes for hotel rooms; competitive conditions in the lodging industry; relationships with clients and property owners; the availability of capital to finance hotel growth; and other risk factors that Marriott International, Inc. identifies in the most recent quarterly report on Form 10-Q that it filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission; any of which could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed in or implied by those statements. We make those statements as of the date of this press release, and we undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.