Will Marriott Be the Next Airbnb?
To compete in the booming home-share market and stand up to the dominance of Airbnb, global hotel chain Marriott has joined forces with California-based booking platform BookingPal for its recently launched Homes & Villas division.
With BookingPal, Marriott Homes & Villas uses the technology company's connectivity platform, inventory management portal, reservation and payment engine, central reservation system, and customer service portal.
Jennifer Hsieh, vice-president of Homes & Villas by Marriott International, said: "Marriott has a history of innovation, and BookingPal's capabilities have helped us quickly establish our new home-rental offering, providing guests, including members of our travel incentive programme, more accommodation options to meet their evolving travel needs."
The home-share platform launched in 100 destinations in April this year, with 2,000 luxury homes in the US, Europe, the Caribbean and Latin America. Options include a six-bedroom cottage in Sorrento with an infinity pool and wood-fired pizza oven, an ocean-front villa in Anguilla with private beach and personal butler, and an 18th-century 17-bedroom castle, complete with fishing lake.
Read Tomorrow's Super-Spender Luxury Travellers for more on high-end home rentals for wealthy consumers. For more left-field thinking on home-sharing, see Airbnb Partners with 23andMe for Heritage Vacations and Airbnb Partners with The Louvre for a Sleepover.