Marriott aims to open 30 hotels in Africa by 2020

Following its acquisition of Protea Hotel Group for an estimated $200 million earlier this year, Marriott is planning to open 30 properties across the continent by 2020. By that year, the company is set to go from 120 properties in Africa with 14,000 rooms across ten markets to 150 properties with 19,000 rooms across 17 markets.

According to MoneyWeb, Marriott may build 40 to 50 hotels in Nigeria, South Africa and Egypt each by 2020 to benefit from a surge of travelers. From the Ethiopian capital city Addis Ababa, Alex Kyriakidis, the chain’s president for the Middle East and Africa, said that the plan is to add 10,000 hotel rooms each in Africa’s three biggest economies based on their economic potential and tourist attractions.

Even more significantly, Kyriakidis said that the company sees the region as its highest revenue-growth market to 2020. Occupancy rates at the chain’s hotels in Cairo and at Red Sea resorts have increased to 60 percent to 75 percent from 30 percent to 45 percent since the May election of President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi, he added.

It will open nine hotels with a total of 1,300 rooms in the next 14 months in Ethiopia, Rwanda, Ghana, Uganda and South Africa, Kyriakidis said. According to Breaking Travel News, the Marriott Executive Apartments Addis Ababa, owned by Sunshine Business plc, will be the first property under the extended stay brand to open in Africa. The hotel is expected to have 104 units and will be located at the financial district, close to the UN Headquarters and Addis Ababa Stadium. In Uganda, a new Residence Inn by Marriott Kampala Kololo has just been signed, bringing the total property count under the Protea Hotels and Residence Inn brands in the country alone to three.

“The potential of the African market is awe-inspiring,” Kyriakidis said. “Over the next few years we plan to expand our presence even further from ten countries to 17 with a capital investment by Marriott’s real estate partners of $1.5 billion across the continent.