Homes & Villas by Marriott Bonvoy: Shift in Guest Preferences Sparks Rise in Non-Traditional Destinations



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Marriott Homes & Villas saw growth to 160,000 homes and a 38% surge in international demand, combined with innovative use of generative AI for tailored guest experiences.

Since 2021, international reservations are making up a bigger piece of bookings at Homes & Villas by Marriott Bonvoy: It has surged from 14% to 38% of the total, according to vice president Jennifer Hsieh. 

This growth reflects not only the increasing comfort of travelers with international destinations but also the strength of the U.S. dollar.

Hseih said that the classics like Italy, France, the UK, and Spain remain popular, but Marriott is also seeing a rise in less traditional destinations. “Travelers are now choosing Paros over Santorini and Curaçao over St. Maarten,” Hsieh said.

“The beauty of the vacation rental industry is you can have incredible distribution in these small and burgeoning destinations,” she said. “And our job is to find those places for you.”

Expansion of curated collections

Homes & Villas also expanded its listings to nearly 160,000 homes globally, marking a 39% growth in the past year.

A significant part of this growth strategy is the introduction of curated collections. “We talked to our partners, our guests, and we looked at the passion points of our bottom line members and we said, how do we put together the most compelling set of inspirational homes that guests need?” said Hsieh.

The collections are meant to fit specific guests needs, from family-friendly homes to Instagram-worthy moments to meditation domes.

But while consumers aren’t looking for standardization in their homes and experiences, there is a demand for quality. “What I think has shifted is that consumers don’t want standardization in the home product design or style or amenities even, what they want is consistency and cleanliness, safety and security.”

Leveraging AI

The integration of generative Artificial Intelligence (AI) is another key development for Homes & Villas.

Marriott will be using generative AI to enhance search functionality and help customers find ideal rentals. For example, a user can input specific requirements like proximity to Dollywood, pet-friendliness, and the need for a hot tub, and the AI will match them with suitable properties.

Hsieh said that this has allowed the company to go beyond what traditional filters can do.

“Generative AI is really helpful in sorting through complex things,” said Hsieh. “And homes are incredibly complex. Every single home is unique and customers want to know everything from the layout of the beds, to how shallow the pool is upon entry in case their toddler is there. It is full of details.”



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