ANAHEIM, Calif. — Since Wyndham Hotels & Resorts last held a global conference, the company has expanded its portfolio through organic growth, acquisitions and the launch of five new brands. During the company’s 2023 event, held this week at the Anaheim Convention Center, several of Wyndham’s leaders discussed the company’s growth trajectory. 

In the early summer of 2021, Wyndham repositioned its Registry Collection of vacation rentals in the Wyndham Destinations portfolio as a dedicated luxury brand with 17 hotels open and another 12 in the pipeline. Four months later, the company announced Wyndham Alltra, an all-inclusive resort brand that focuses on the upper-midscale segment, developed in partnership with Playa Hotels & Resorts.

Nearly a year later, Wyndham acquired the European Vienna House brand to gain a foothold in overseas markets where the company had a limited portfolio. 

And last year, the company launched the Echo Suites extended-stay brand, which Geoff Ballotti, president and CEO of Wyndham, called “the fastest growing all new-construction economy extended-stay brand in the land.” By March, the brand's pipeline had reached 200 hotels.

“It's just been amazing, that midscale and above growth that we've seen,” Ballotti said during the conference’s opening general session, noting that the company had traditionally lacked a presence in the luxury and all-inclusive spaces, and that the new brands were meant to fill those voids. 

International Growth

At Wyndham’s 2019 global conference, the company’s leaders shared their goals of international expansion. Only a few months later, the pandemic forced the entire industry to adjust and adapt to new demands and expectations, and while not all of the 2019 goals were realized, the company’s global growth strategy remains strong. 

“Our growth internationally has been faster than it's ever been,” Ballotti said during the general session. “We've never seen the type of growth—since we've last all been together—than we have overseas.” Wyndham’s global pipeline, he added, currently stands at more than 1,800 hotels with 230,000 rooms. “We've never had a faster-growing pipeline, both domestically and internationally.” 

Dimitris Manikis—president of Europe, Middle East and Africa for Wyndham—noted some solid markets for growth in his region. While development in Russia is currently on hold, he reported “amazing growth” in other central independent states like Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan. Germany is doing “phenomenally well,” as is the U.K. “We see a lot of growth in the leisure markets in Spain, Portugal, Greece, Cyprus and the southern parts of Italy and France."

Gustavo Viescas, Wyndham’s president for Latin America and the Caribbean, said the company has 251 hotels with more than 39,000 guestrooms in the region. A year-old partnership with Spanish hotel company Palladium Hotel Group added 14 all-inclusive hotels with more than 6,500 rooms to Wyndham’s Registry Collection luxury brand. “We went into a new segment, and it’s one of the segments that is growing fastest in this moment,” Viescas said. 

Across the 18 countries of the Asia-Pacific region, Wyndham has more than 1,700 hotels with more than 200,000 guestrooms across 14 of the company’s 24 brands, said Joon Aun Ooi, president for APAC, adding that these properties are predominantly franchised. “Our pipeline is easily [between 300 and] 400 direct franchised hotels, and about 100,000 rooms,” he said. Last year, Wyndham signed 170 deals across the Asia-Pacific region and opened about 140 hotels. “This year, we are on track to surpass last year's numbers,” Ooi added. In China alone, Wyndham has more than 1,500 properties, about on par with where it was four years ago. Outside of China, 60 percent of the company’s growth in the region is focused on Vietnam.  

Manikis expects the company’s expansion to attract inbound travelers from the target markets as well. “There is a new line of consumers, which is the younger generation that is driven by cost-effective travel and most focused on experiences. And this is where I think the three of us are betting a lot of our futures: creating experiences, but doing it in a cost-effective manner.”