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"Build It" said our Haitian Associates -- an Historic Announcement

Posted:11/28/2011 5:49 PM

 

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One of the best things Marriott can do to improve the lives of people and communities around the world is to open up a brand new hotel.  Right away we create hundreds of new jobs, provide skill training and help improve the environment for doing business. 

 

That's why I'm so very proud to announce that Marriott will open a hotel in Haiti.  It will be the first hotel in Haiti since the earthquake and the first international hotel to be located there.  When we open our doors, it will signal that Haiti is also open for business. 

 

Earthquake footage courtesy of the American Red Cross

Two years ago when the earthquake struck, I was staying at our Marriott Harbor Beach Ft. Lauderdale, Florida hotel where more than 200 Haitians work.  Many of them lost family members and our foundation immediately contributed to the Red Cross for earthquake relief.

What would become of Haiti?  The country’s resilient spirit gripped the world.  Could the poorest country in the western hemisphere be rebuilt better than ever after this terrible earthquake?  

I knew we needed to explore building a new hotel.  How this deal was “baked” is a remarkable story that goes straight to our core values of putting people first and serving our world. 

Led by Haitian associates, Harbor Beach sent a team to join in the relief efforts.  It was grim.  They didn't even have places for them to stay or to eat.  

Bill Marriott and Harbor Beach AssociatesThen, working with the Clinton Foundation, our development team led by our Executive Vice President for Global Communications and Public Affairs, Kathleen Matthews, went to Haiti to explore possible sites and local partners.  Among them was Digicel, the largest telecommunications firm in the Caribbean, who had recently entered the Haitian market.  They needed hotel rooms to get business done and they were interested in being our partner. 

Marriott Haiti hotel renderingThe 173-room Marriott hotel is scheduled to open doors to “a world of opportunity” for the people of Haiti.  I know our Haitian associates in Florida are excited to train the new workers and get the hotel launched in 2014.

This is an historic moment for Marriott and for Haiti.  Our associates deserve the credit.  They urged us to "build it," and WE ARE.  Their spirit would not let us walk away. 

Leave a comment and let me know what you think about our move into Haiti.  Would you travel there?

I’m Bill Marriott and thanks for helping me keep Marriott on the Move.

 

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The NFL & Courtyard - Two Power Brands

Posted:11/18/2011 6:19 PM

Screen shot 2011-11-15 at 11.18.26 AM


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Brian Orakpo stands 6’3” and 260 pounds.  He came by headquarters to welcome Courtyard as the official sponsor of the NFL.  

 

I’ve been a longtime Redskins fan, in fact, since 1942.  I’ve seen them win some Super Bowls and I’ve seen them struggle like they’re doing this year.  

Putting a winning team together isn’t easy.  You need to find talent at every position and keep adapting your game plan.  A football coach and a CEO are always drafting or recruiting; they are coaching or mentoring; they are creating new plays or in our case at Marriott, new brands.  

That’s why it’s great that Courtyard is the official hotel sponsor of the NFL.  Marriott invented Courtyard and changed the lodging game.   We saw an opportunity to capture new ground and appeal to the business traveler.  That was way back in 1983.   

Today, the game has changed.  It’s much more competitive as other companies move into the market.  But we continue to innovate, to redesign our lobbies and expand globally.  

Brian and Bill

We call Courtyard our "power" brand.  Brian Orakpo fits that description as an NFL player.  

I’m Bill Marriott and thanks for helping me keep Marriott on the Move.   

 

 

Enter Courtyard’s Great NFL Road Tour Sweepstakes for a chance to win a trip to Super Bowl XLVI and many other great opportunities. 


 

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Lessons on Life and Lodging

Posted:11/10/201110:05 PM

The other day I received a totally undeserved standing ovation as I spoke to students at Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration.  I think the students just wanted to stretch their legs after 45 minutes of listening to my stories.  

CORNELL

I was really surprised and stunned by the applause.  But as I later thought about it, the clapping wasn’t for me but the incredible growth of our hospitality industry.  

A big reason for that growth is the increasing number of colleges and universities that offer degrees in hotel management.  Marriott works with Cornell and many other schools to develop and fund this course-work.  And, of course, we hire as many of these graduates as we can.

And so, I was honored to share my experiences with these future hoteliers.  The best part was my daughter, Debbie, who interviewed me on stage.  She had probing, insider-type questions.  She also interviewed her husband Ron Harrison who heads up Marriott’s Architecture and Construction department.  She lobbed him some softball questions.  I thought that was pretty smart.  It was great family fun.  

We’ve put together some excerpts (above) or you can watch the entire 45 minutes.  I don’t know who’d want to do that. 

After meeting many of the Cornell students, I’m excited about the future of our business.  There’s something about being on a college campus that energizes me and leaves me very optimistic.  As my college-aged grandchildren say, “I’m pumped!” 

I’m Bill Marriott and thanks for helping me keep Marriott on the Move.

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Incredible India

Posted:11/02/201110:18 PM

India is truly an incredible country.  There’s something old and something new everywhere you turn.  It’s experiencing tremendous growth and our hotels are right in the middle of it. 

Most people’s impressions of India are not nearly as up to date as the changes taking place there.  They may have been formed in school while watching a long, boring documentary.

In an attempt to dispel some myths and stereotypes, our Indian associates took to the streets and produced their own mini-documentaries.  The things they do and the places they go … well, let’s just say they know where to have fun.

 

This “local knowledge” is important to our guests.  After checking in, guests want to know the top restaurant or the best yoga class.

So meet our talented, knowledgeable local hotel associates as they take you on a tour across the country to see their new India.  You’ll learn why the country’s tourism slogan fits:  “Incredible India.”

Click on the links below to view the grand openings of our newest hotels –Pune Marriott Hotel and Convention Centre and the Marriott Jaipur Hotel.  We’ll have many more hotel openings in the next few years.

Leave a comment.  I’d like to hear about your favorite India video or destination.

I’m Bill Marriott and thanks for helping me keep Marriott on the Move.

Pune Marriott Hotel and Convention Centre

Jaipur Marriott Hotel 

 

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I'm Bill Marriott, Chairman & CEO of Marriott International.

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