Cape Town’s skyline is set to change as the world’s largest hotel company cements its local presence with the development of three hotels in the Mother City (and two in Johannesburg)
The ink had barely dried on the $13bn merger with Starwood Hotels that made Marriott International the largest hotel operator in the world when the company announced a series of firsts. This notably included a R3bn agreement with local property developers Amdec Group that will result in five branded hotels opening in South Africa, catering for different market segments among international and domestic visitors.
The three new hotels in the Mother City include the first Marriott Hotel in Cape Town; the first upscale extended-stay brand in South Africa, Residence Inn by Marriott; and AC Hotels by Marriott, the first hotel under this brand for the Middle East & Africa region. And, of the R3bn total, R1bn is earmarked for the Johannesburg developments: Marriott Hotel Melrose Arch and Marriott Executive Apartments, expected to open mid-August 2018.
First of the Cape Town hotels to open will be the 189-room AC Hotel Cape Town Waterfront at The Yacht Club in June 2018, a unique mixed-use landmark that includes exclusive residential apartments and prime-grade offices. Then, in 2019, mixed-use development Harbour Arch – set to act as the new gateway to the city centre – is expected to open. This will house the 200-room Cape Town Marriott Hotel Foreshore as well as the 150-room Residence Inn by Marriott Cape Town Foreshore.
Marriott has been aggressively extending its footprint across Africa, opening its first branded hotel in Rwanda this week and announcing a series of expansion plans, propelled by the continent’s growing middle class, which is expected to drive tourism and business travel.
Words Lucinda Jordaan