AC Hotels accelerates American advance

Pictured: rendering of AC by Marriott Hotel Naples, Florida.
Marriott International’s select service brand, AC Hotels by Marriott, is increasing its American ambitions with a strong pipeline dominated by upcoming sites in the USA.

According to the THP database, the select service brand has at least 49 upscale hotel additions on the slate, totalling 8,473 keys.

Extra quarter

As at 30 September 2022, the strand had 218 sites encompassing 33,940 keys in operation across 33 countries. Therefore its pipeline will mean that AC’s portfolio will expand by at least a quarter over the next few years.

Looking at opening pace, we see that the next couple of years will have a steady tempo, with at least 18 additions expected by the end of this year, representing 37% of the high end pipeline. A further 15 new sites will come online in 2024, while just two are currently scheduled for 2025. The remaining 14 are yet to be designated a delivery date.

American ascendency

AC’s premium pipeline is chiefly comprises American projects. The North American continent as a whole is due to welcome at least 38 sites, representing 78% of the total, with the rest of the continents trailing far behind on single figures.

The USA itself is expecting 37 of those 38 North American additions, equating to 76% of the whole. Only China and Poland have multiples of expected openings, with three and two scheduled apiece.

Recent signings

According to THP, US signings are continuing apace, with at least seven added in the second half of 2022.

One of these recent projects well underway is AC by Marriott Hotel Naples in Florida. The hotel is the hospitality component of Naples Square, a mixed-use development master-planned by Wheelock Street Capital and The Ronto Group. Developed by South Carolina-based OTO Development, the three-storey property will include a ground floor café and lobby, 2,500 sq ft of divisible meeting space, a rooftop pool, and Limón, a destination rooftop restaurant and bar with indoor and outdoor seating.

Other latest signings are AC Hotel by Marriott Nexton in Summerville, South Carolina, which will deliver 117 guestrooms on four floors by the end of 2024; AC by Marriott Hotel Kansas City, a 240-key site which will result from the conversion of the 13-storey Rialto Building, due for completion in Q3 this year; and across the other side of Missouri, the 207-room AC by Marriott Hotel Clayton will arrive in Q1 2024.

Brand character

AC hotels are designed to create a comfortable, elevated and unobtrusive experience for guests. The brand focuses on details and experiences that should provide a seamless, intuitive experience that lets travellers live life by design.

The hotels feature signature spaces including the AC Lounge, which invites locals and travellers to collaborate during the day or enjoy cocktails and tapas at night, and the AC Kitchen, offering a European-inspired breakfast. AC’s guest rooms and public spaces feature sleek furnishings, curated artwork, and intuitive technology to inspire and connect guests.